Monday, June 23, 2014
Monday Morning Devo--Beyond the Tomb, Part 8
And being assembled together with them, He commanded them not to depart from Jerusalem, but to wait for the Promise of the Father, “which,” He said, “you have heard from Me; for John truly baptized with water, but you shall be baptized with the Holy Spirit not many days from now.” Therefore, when they had come together, they asked Him, saying, “Lord, will You at this time restore the kingdom to Israel?” And He said to them, “It is not for you to know times or seasons which the Father has put in His own authority. But you shall receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you; and you shall be witnesses to Me in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the end of the earth.”
Now when He had spoken these things, while they watched, He was taken up, and a cloud received Him out of their sight. And while they looked steadfastly toward heaven as He went up, behold, two men stood by them in white apparel, who also said, “Men of Galilee, why do you stand gazing up into heaven? This same Jesus, who was taken up from you into heaven, will so come in like manner as you saw Him go into heaven.” Acts 1:4-11
Although there have been recorded instances of Jesus appearing to people after the Ascension , this was Jesus's last appearance in the forty days after the ressurrection. I know I haven't captured all of the appearances; in fact, I don't believe the Bible has all of them. I believe there were many more times He sat with the believers, broke bread with them, and taught them what they would need to know to carry on.
I wonder if after a while His followers began to think He would just stick around with them throughout their lives. Maybe they wondered if they also would live on eternally just as they were during those forty days. I know they hoped He would establish His kingdom right then. We still want that, don't we?
His answer was "not now." I've been a Christian now for forty years. Over the years I've seen a lot of people who felt that signs were strongly suggesting He would be returning soon. I'm hearing it again lately with the "blood moons" showing up this year and 2015 (eclipses of the full moon). This post isn't about those things--if you want to know more there are dozens of blogs about them you can look up on Google.
I don't know if these are indeed signs of the end times. As Jesus himself said, only God the Father knows when that will happen. Nothing--absolutely NOTHING--would delight me more, but I won't stop doing what I'm doing. I'll keep making to do lists, plan on that trip to the coast with my hubby, fix meals, and feed the dog.
Plan as though you'll live a full life, but live expectantly. The ones you love? This might be a great time to tell them how much Jesus loves them. The ones you have offended or who offended you, think about calling them (or writing to them) and try to mend the fences.
Prayer: Father God, You have the perfect plan. I pray You will allow me to be a part of that plan. And I echo with so many others, "Even so, Lord Jesus, come." Amen