rom: T.M. Schoewe
We are living in the post resurrection period of this world’s history which was marked by last Thursday as the Ascension of our Lord! It is not only marked by our own calendar but geographically as on the Mount of Olives. On the highest point of the little mountain is the Augusta Victoria Hospital. On that high point it is said, Jesus ascended into heaven. There is a church tower on the grounds and there is a mosaic on the wall of the church portraying the ascending Jesus on a cloud flanked by two angels who address the witnesses (of about 120 followers including the disciples) with the question “why are you standing looking up into heaven?”
The angels might just as well have said “there is nothing more to see!” Also that, “there is work to do! Go back to Jerusalem and wait as the Lord told you to do until He sends you His Spirit,” which you know they did as you can surely see to this day how the gospels are spreading to the ends of this earth. And do you know what that means?
The holy Christian creed we confess says “He ascended into heaven and sits at the right hand of God the Father.” The question is what does this mean? That He took a chair and is just sitting there, taking it easy? Just resting? No!
Scripture teaches us the Christ has become God’s Chief Executive Officer. He is the CEO! And according to His human nature He rules over all things with His divine power. Our comfort from this revelation is that He sends men to this day to preach the gospel of redemption. And as our priest He prays for us (intercedes for us) before God. And this is very important; FOR IT IS THE KING Who governs and protects His church, and as its HEAD, rules the world in the interest of the church. We often forget no matter what happens “He is in charge.” That should never be a question!
Implied in the Angels’ questions was the truth; look down, look around you! Well you can see from the Mount of Olives plenty. It could be the Dead Sea and also the Jordan River to the east where John baptized. To the south is Bethlehem. To the west is Jerusalem over which Jesus wept, the very same city over which he weeps to this day. But more important, “there is work to do.” Look around. If our Lord’s ascension is to have meaning, it must be by underlining His presence still on earth, and that is accomplished through you and me. As a Christian you are evidence that Christ is on earth today, as is that hospital on the Mount of Olives which serves the struggling people of the Middle East. So the ascended Lord is with us as He told us “In as much you do to the least of these my brethren you did it unto me!”
Visit the Mount of Olives if you have the chance and the wherewithal! It will enlarge your outlook as well as your faith.