Ascension Day

Ascension Day - which LS Churches will recognize on Sunday, May 16th - is the day when the global Christian church celebrates Jesus ascending into heaven, physically departing from the disciples, as recorded in Luke 24:51-53 and Acts 1:9-10.

Contrary to the popular imagination, the ascension of Jesus wasn’t an invisible escalator ride up to the sky, but was instead another step in His exaltation as Lord over all creation.

The ascension was, essentially, a visible, physical fulfillment of the truth expressed by these two Psalms:

Psalm 47:8 - “God reigns over the nations; God sits on his holy throne.”
Psalm 110:1 - “The LORD says to my Lord: ‘Sit at my right hand, until I make your enemies your footstool.”


In the Old Testament, God’s special presence was manifested over the Ark of the Covenant in the Holy of Holies:

“And David arose and went with all the people who were with him from Baale-judah to bring up from there the ark of God, which is called by the name of the LORD of hosts who sits enthroned on the cherubim.” (2 Sam. 6:2)

In the New Testament, God showed up in true human flesh when Jesus became man. And Jesus now rules as truly human, truly God (see Luke 22:69; Eph. 1:20; Col. 3:1; Heb. 12:2).

So here are 5 reasons why the ascension matters:

  1. Because Jesus ascended into heaven, true humanity is united again to God; this is a picture of the culmination of God’s plan to redeem His people - God and humanity are fully and completely reconciled, with humanity being physically present with God (see Eph. 1:10, 20-23; Rev. 21-22). 
  2. Jesus, being the Second Adam, restores the dominion of humanity that was lost in Eden, and will one day give this dominion over to His people. Right now, Jesus rules from His throne in Heaven as He sits “in session”, having total dominion. Because He accomplished redemption and reigns now, we will one day rule the new creation with Jesus (see 1 Cor. 6:3; 2 Tim. 2:11-13; Rev. 3:21).
  3. Jesus is our all-powerful Advocate who ministers from the throne of grace for our good (1 John 2:1).
  4. Jesus is reigning over everything, which is good news for Christians - those whom He has empowered with the Holy Spirit to act as His representatives, heralds, ambassadors, and priests prior to His return.
  5. The last thing the disciples physically witnessed Jesus do was pronounce a blessing on them. This is the defining characteristic of Jesus’ ministry: sovereign, unmerited, and effective blessing upon undeserving people (see Luke 24:50-51).