Ascension Day Meditation

THE ASCENSION OF CHRIST
shared by Nick Laninga

Thursday May 5th
Today marks Ascension day the fortieth day of Easter. It would be good to reflect on
the importance of this day with some appropriate text, verse and song as Christ returned to heaven.

“The Day He was taken up”
And He led them as far as Bethany, and He lifted up his hands, and blessed them. And it came to pass, while He blessed them, he was parted from them, and carried up into heaven
Luke 24: 50-51

W.H. Griffith Thomas rightly claims that the ascension is not only a great historical fact of the New Testament, but a great factor in the life of Christ and Christians, since it the consummation of His redemptive work. What a fitting climax was expressed when He ascended not a single promise was unfulfilled.

As J Oswald Sanders states:
“He left His own in the very act of blessing. For this He had come, and blessing He departed, not as a condemning judge but as a compassionate friend and High Priest, with hands outstretched.”

Golden harps are sounding, Angel voices sing, Pearly gates are opened, Opened for the King; Christ, the King of glory, Jesus, King of love Is gone up in triumph To His throne above.”
F.R. HAVERGAL. Author of “Take my life and let it be.”

Christ’s redemptive work is complete—the incarnation, crucifixion, and the ascension was a complete and final demonstration that His atonement had forever solved the problem of man’s sin.

If the Christ who had died had stopped at the cross, His work had been incomplete,
If the Christ that was buried had stayed in the tomb, He had only known defeat.
But the way of the cross never stops at the cross, and the way of the tomb leads on
To victorious grace in the heavenly place where the risen Lord has gone.
Poem by ANNIE JOHNSON FLINT. [Author of “He giveth more grace”]

The gift of the Holy Spirit was dependent on His glorification.The Holy Spirit was not yet given; because Jesus was not yet glorified.
John7:39

Now the comforter has come and abides with us.
The Lord ascendeth up on high,
The Lord hath triumphed gloriously,
In power and might excelling;
The grave and hell are captive led,
Lo He returns, our glorious Head,
To His eternal dwelling.
The heavens with joy receive their LORD,
By saints, by angel hosts adored;
O day of exultation!
O earth, adore thy glorious King!
His rising, His ascension sing with grateful adoration.
Our great High Priest has gone before,
Now on His church His grace to pour,
And still His love He giveth;
O may our hearts to Him ascend,
may all within us upward tend
To Him who ever liveth. 
ARTHUR TOZER RUSSEL.

Why do you stand gazing up into heaven? This same Jesus who was taken from you into
heaven, will so come in like manner as you saw Him go into heaven.
MARANATHA !!!

For further devotional time today:

Read Psalm 24

Please read the lyrics of song 291 in the Trinity Hymnal
“SEE, THE CONQUEROR MOUNTS  IN TRIUMPH”

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zN4r7hrgBJM


Listen to  song “The Triumphal Ascension of Christ” the Lansing tune of
Ye Gates, Lift your Heads, the Glad summons Obey”.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BtHxtowBTzA

Have a blessed Ascension Day.
The Laningas

Listening to Easter: UP!

Hear the bells ringing
They’re singing that you can be born again
Hear the bells ringing
They’re singing Christ is risen from the dead

The angel up on the tombstone
Said He has risen, just as He said
Quickly now, go tell his disciples
That Jesus Christ is no longer dead

Joy to the world, He has risen, hallelujah
He’s risen, hallelujah
He’s risen, hallelujah

Hear the bells ringing
They’re singing that you can be healed right now
Hear the bells ringing, they’re singing
Christ, He will reveal it now

The angels, they all surround us
And they are ministering Jesus’ power
Quickly now, reach out and receive it
For this could be your glorious hour

Joy to the world, He has risen, hallelujah
He’s risen, hallelujah
He’s risen, hallelujah, hallelujah

The angel up on the tombstone
Said He has risen, just as He said
Quickly now, go tell his disciples
That Jesus Christ is no longer dead

Joy to the world, He has risen, hallelujah
He’s risen, hallelujah
He’s risen, hallelujah
Hallelujah
~Keith Green

 

“Let Him easter in us, be a dayspring to the dimness of us, be a crimson-cresseted east.”
― Gerard Manley Hopkins

Too often, the bright light of Easter morning dims over time
as we return to our daily routines.
In mere days,
the humdrum replaces the extraordinary,
tragedy overcomes festivity,
darkness overwhelms dawn.

The world encourages this,
we don’t muster enough resistance.
we climb right back into the tomb of our sin,
move the huge stone securely back in place,
and lie there waiting for rot to settle in.

We are not alone. We have plenty of company with us behind the stone.

The stone is pushed aside,
the burden shouldered,
the debt completely paid.

How can we allow the light to dim?

He is risen.

We are eastered beyond imagining.

 

Listening Through Lent: We Stand Forgiven

Oh, to see the dawn
Of the darkest day:
Christ on the road to Calvary.
Tried by sinful men,
Torn and beaten, then
Nailed to a cross of wood.
(Refrain)
This the power of the cross:
Christ became sin for us;
Took the blame, bore the wrath–
We stand forgiven at the cross.
Oh, to see the pain
Written on Your face, 
Bearing the awesome weight of sin.
Every bitter thought,
Every evil deed
Crowning Your bloodstained brow.
Now the daylight flees;
Now the ground beneath
Quakes as its Maker bows His head.
Curtain torn in two, 
Dead are raised to life;
“Finished!” the victory cry.
Oh, to see my name
Written in the wounds,
For through Your suffering I am free.
Death is crushed to death;
Life is mine to live,
Won through Your selfless love.
(Final Refrain)
This, the power of the cross:
Son of God–slain for us.
What a love! What a cost!
We stand forgiven at the cross.
~Keith Getty and Stuart Townend “The Power of the Cross”
I love pictures.  This hymn is full of poignant pictures.  And the music Keith Getty and Stuart Townend have written for the words add great power to these already powerful words.
Good Friday.
“It is finished!”
Hear the dying Savior cry,
the voice of love and mercy sounds aloud from Calvary.
Son of God–slain for us.
What a love! What a cost!
We stand forgiven at the cross.
Is there any better news than that?
~Barbara Hoelle

Listening Through Lent: I Will Bring You Home

Though you are homeless
Though you’re alone
I will be your home
Whatever’s the matter
Whatever’s been done
I will be your home
I will be your home
I will be your home
In this fearful fallen place
I will be your home
When time reaches fullness
When I move my hand
I will bring you home
Home to your own place
In a beautiful land
I will bring you home
I will bring you home
I will bring you home
From this fearful fallen place
I will bring you home
I will bring you home
~Michael Card

This song, sung each year at our Chapel’s Tenebrae service,
is a message long awaited
through the bright darkness of Lent
and the midnight of Good Friday.
It is Christ’s message to each of us:
when we ask to be remembered,
when we truly and wholly ask for forgiveness
for whatever is the matter,
for whatever we have done,we find our only hope and comfort is in Him.
He brings us home.
Home.
Homeless no longer, but homeful and hopeful.

 

Listening Through Lent: Like Fruit on the Vine

The cup and the loaf
You beckon me close
to commune
Like fruit on the vine
crushed into wine
You were bruised
Broken and torn
crowned with scorn
Poured out for all

Chorus:
All my sin
All my shame
All my secrets
All my chains
Lamb of God
Great is your love
Your blood covers it all

I taste and I drink
You satisfy me
With your love
Your goodness flows down
and waters dry ground
like a flood
Let mercy rain
Saving grace
Poured out for all

My sin, not in part
You cover it all,
You cover it all
Not in part,
But the whole
You cover it all,
You cover it all
It’s nailed to the cross.
You cover it all
You cover it all
And I bear it no more
You cover it all.
~Allie LaPointe and David Moffitt

On this Maundy Thursday
we are called to draw near Him,
to gather together among the
hungry and thirsty
to the Supper He has prepared.
He washes the dirt off our feet;
we look away, mortified.
He serves us from Himself;
we fret about whether
we are worthy.
We are not.

Starving and parched,
grimy and weary,
hardly presentable
to be guests at His table,
we made worthy only because
He has made us so.

 

Listening Through Lent: Even for Us

Crucifixus etiam pro nobis.
Sub Pontio Pilato, passus et se pultus est.
(He was crucified even for us, under Pontius Pilate:
he suffered and was buried.)

 

Even for us, He rode into the city under palms and a cloud
Even for us, He wept and sorrowed
Even for us, He overturns the tables of the greedy
Even for us, He teaches and prepares
Even for us, He kneels and washes
Even for us, He breaks bread
Even for us, He sweats blood
Even for us, He receives a kiss
Even for us, He suffers
Even for us, He dies and is buried
Even for us, He rises and calls our name.

Even for us, such as we are, who we are, what we are to be,
He has come and will again.