Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Ascension 2009 Luke 24:44-53

Our reading today is about Jesus' return to heaven. In his life and ministry the boundary between heaven and earth started to break down. He taught about God's kingdom not as a place but as a way of life in which justice and love matter.

Jesus didn't stay on earth very long. Just 33 years was all he needed. And for the most part what we know about Jesus happened in just the last three years of his life here on earth.

Time moves all on its own. The older I get the more I've realized just how much faster time moves on even when were aren't ready. In all of our lives there are moments, life changing events, that happen in just a blink in time. Sometimes life changes happen so fast that we humans only later on, a ways down the road, get a chance to digest them. Reading Luke 24:44-53 I'm reminded of just how fast things happened to and for Jesus and his friends and just how much time it still takes the church to understand what Jesus was doing and saying.

In 3 years time Jesus went from being a carpenter to a teacher and preacher. His ministry touched thousands but it only lasted for just a few years in space and time. The events that changed us the most, just Cross and rising, happened in 3 days of His time on earth.

Part of us says that Jesus is gone. We look at the world and we see that evil is so powerful and that justice and righteousness seem like a dream and not like a strong and overflowing waterfall. But the part of us that lives by faith and hope knows full well that Jesus is still here.

The cross and the empty tomb transformed death and life. The old order of living and dying seemed to just be the way things would always be. God was on the move, something was going to change. Just as Jesus, risen from the dead, was about to return to heaven; back to his place with the Father, he told his followers to wait for another move by God.

Jesus directed them forward, but didn't send them into a new ministry yet,

repentance and forgiveness of sins is to be proclaimed in his name to all
nations, beginning from Jerusalem. 48You are witnesses of these things. 49And
see, I am sending upon you what my Father promised; so stay here in the city
until you have been clothed with power from on high.” (Luke 24 NIV)
The 11 who'd walked with Jesus alive again were surely still caught in awe as he told them to stay put in Jerusalem until the Holy Spirit's arrival. They'd known grief and now they were living in joy. Jesus rose and all the old rules about death and life were put aside. God is still remaking the world the same way today

No comments: