So when they had come together, they asked him, “Lord, will you at this time restore the kingdom to Israel?” He said to them, “It is not for you to know times or seasons that the Father has fixed by his own authority. But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you, and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the end of the earth.” And when he had said these things, as they were looking on, he was lifted up, and a cloud took him out of their sight. And while they were gazing into heaven as he went, behold, two men stood by them in white robes, and said, “Men of Galilee, why do you stand looking into heaven? This Jesus, who was taken up from you into heaven, will come in the same way as you saw him go into heaven.” Acts 1:6-11 ESV
And he led them out as far as Bethany, and lifting up his hands he blessed them. While he blessed them, he parted from them and was carried up into heaven. And they worshiped him and returned to Jerusalem with great joy, and were continually in the temple blessing God. Luke 24:50-52 ESV
Have you ever seen a baby monitor? A baby monitor is useful for parents when their babies are asleep in a different room. The parents can look at the monitor and see how their baby is doing, and if he or she is asleep or if the baby is okay. They can also hear if the baby cries or any other noise in the bedroom. The baby can’t see the parents watching, but they are there, and they can help their baby if there is a problem.
When Jesus went up to heaven, he hadn’t broken the promise that he would always be with his people. The Lord hadn’t left the disciples he loved, but he took away the ability for them to see him and to touch him. Jesus reclaimed his power and authority as the king who rules with God the Father, and because of that, he can be with everyone and help and hear the prayers of all people all the time, all over the world. He doesn’t just help us when he sees we’re in trouble and need his help, but instead he is constantly with us to show his love and tell his message through us. Jesus promised to send the Holy Spirit so that his people could be his witnesses. We can tell others what Jesus has done for us, and we don’t have to worry about what God is doing through the history and events of this world. Jesus told his disciples to leave the times and seasons to God, their Heavenly Father, and to focus on what he has given us to do.
There were two men in white robes who appeared to the disciples as they kept looking up into heaven after Jesus had disappeared from their sight. These actually were angels, and they told the disciples that Jesus would someday return. When that happens, everyone will see him. This is a wonderful promise for everyone who believes that he died to take our sins away. We know that when Jesus comes again, he will take us to be with him forever.
Dear Jesus, thank you for being with us and being our king, and for taking care of and helping people all around the world. Amen.