“His Ascension, Session, And Return”

Posted: December 21, 2013 in Bible Prophecy, Christmas, Rapture, Resurrection, Spiritual Gifts

                Perhaps you’re like many other people who are asking, “Where did He go?  What’s He doing now?  Will He come back some day?”  Or maybe you’re among those who forget about the Christ child right after the holidays are over when you get back into the routine of your normal life.  Do you know what lies ahead of you?  What can we know?  Since the predictions concerning His first coming were fulfilled literally, shouldn’t we take the predictions that were made concerning His second coming literally?  Let’s consider Christ’s –

                Ascension.  It was public, gradual, literal, and was witnessed by His disciples (Acts 1:9). It was accompanied with a promise to return in the same way His disciples saw Him leave (Acts 1:11; Mathew 24:29ff; Zechariah 12:8).  We’re told that He returned to the Father’s right hand in heaven (Ephesians 1:20).  Since God the Father accepted Jesus (the God-man) back into heaven, we can be assured that His sacrificial death on our behalf also was accepted (John 16:10) and that Christ’s righteousness will be credited to the account of all those who place their faith in Him alone.  Has Christ’s righteousness been put to your account yet?  Without it you can’t enter heaven. Our self righteousness works, done independently of God (John 15:5), are like filthy rags to God (Isaiah 64:6; Ephesians 2:8, 9; Titus 3:5).  Are you trying to gain entrance into heaven by your good works?  Stop!  It won’t work. Do you know what God wants you to do to gain entrance into heaven?  It’s so simple that many people can’t or refuse to believe it.

                Session.  In heaven, at the Father’s right hand, Jesus is acting as an Intercessor for each believer.  He asks the Father, as His equal, to cause to be brought into our lives the people and circumstances that will help bring us to spiritual maturity (Hebrews 7:25; Romans 8:34).  If we fail to give thanks in the midst of the trial or test we grieve God and must confess it as a sin (1 Thessalonians 5:18; Ephesians 4:30; 1 John 1:9).  Jesus also serves as the only Mediator between God and man (1 Timothy 2:5).  Neither His mother nor the saints in heaven have this role and we are never told to pray to them.  Today every true Christian is a kingly priest (1 Peter 2:5, 9; Revelation 1:6) and is supposed to offer up non-bloody, spiritual sacrifies to God (Romans 12:1, 2; Hebrews 13:15, 16).  Jesus Christ is our High Priest and it is through Him and His shed blood that believers may come boldly into the throne room of God to obtain mercy and find grace to help in time of need (Hebrews 4:14-16).  The Lord Jesus Christ is the only Head of His body, the Church (Ephesians 1:22).  At the time of His ascension He gave spiritual gifts (enablements) to each New Testament Christian to be used in the body of Christ to build others up in the faith (Ephesians 4:8-16; 1 Peter 4:10).  We believe that some of these gifts were given out for a limited period of time until the New Testament Scriptures were completed (1 Corinthians 13:10).  If you’re saved, do you know what your spiritual gift is and are you using it with love?  If not, ask for help.

                His Return.  While Christ’s second coming was revealed in the Old Testament (Isaiah 9:6, 7; 61:1-3; Daniel 2:44, 45; 7:9-14; Zechariah 12-14), and confirmed in the New Testament (Acts 1:11; Matthew 24:29-31; Revelation 19:11-16, 19), the Rapture (removal) of the true Church was a mystery that was first unveiled by the Lord just before He went to the cross to die for our sins and rise again (John 14:1-3).  The Apostle Paul explained the mystery of the Rapture (Romans 16:25, 26) to the churches in Corinth and Thessalonica (1 Corinthians 15:51-57; 1 Thessalonians 4:13-18).  These two events must not be confused.  The Rapture is sure, sudden, silent, selective, and satisfying.  They are separated by seven years.  The Rapture precedes the seven years of Tribulation (Daniel 9:27; 1 Thessalonians 5:9; Revelation 3:10) but Christ’s Second Coming will occur after it (Acts 1:11; Matthew 24:29-31; Revelation 19:11-16, 19).  Believe me, you won’t want to be on earth when the Tribulation comes and over half of the world’s population dies (Revelation 6:8; 9:15).  Do you know what you have to do to avoid it?

                Thankful.  Although not visible to us now, Jesus is sitting at God the Father’s right hand and is very active in heaven.  When all whom the Father has given to the Son have come to Him (John 6:37), the Father will instruct God the Son, who is the true Church’s Bridegroom, to come and get His bride on earth and bring her to the place (Bridal Suite) that Jesus has been preparing for her (Ephesians 5:25-32; John 14:1-3; Revelation 21:9-27).  Will you be in that number?  What if He came back today?  Would you be left behind?

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