The Ascension is one of the most important events in the Christian religion. Celebrated forty days after Easter, the Ascension marks the moment when Jesus Christ, after his resurrection, ascended into heaven to sit at the right hand of God the Father. This year the Ascension will be celebrated on May 18, 2023. For Christians, the Ascension is an event filled with symbolic and theological meaning. This celebration is therefore a privileged time to deepen one's faith and understanding of Christian doctrine.
In this article, we will delve into the history and meaning of the Ascension, exploring the different interpretations of this sacred event and its importance for Christian believers. In order to correctly understand the significance of this event we will first see how the Ascension is presented in the Bible and what it means which will subsequently allow us to see how it is celebrated by Christians and finally, we let's see what is the lesson that a Christian can draw from the Ascension in order to apply it in his everyday life.
The Ascension in the Bible
The Ascension is an important event in the Christian Bible which is recounted in the book of Acts of the Apostles, chapter 1, verses 9 to 11. It is the moment when Jesus Christ ascended into heaven before his disciples, after his resurrection.
According to the biblical account, after his death and resurrection, Jesus Christ appeared to his disciples for a period of 40 days, teaching them about the Kingdom of God. At the end of these 40 days, he led them to Bethany, where he blessed his disciples and was taken up into heaven.
The Bible describes this scene poetically: "After he had said this, he was lifted up while they looked, and a cloud hid him from their sight. And as they looked toward heaven while he went from there was going, behold, there appeared to them two men clothed in white, and said, Ye Galileans, why do ye stand looking into heaven? This Jesus, which was taken up from among you into heaven, shall come again in the same manner as you did. 'have seen you go to heaven' (Acts 1:9-11).
The Ascension is therefore the event which marks the end of the earthly mission of Jesus Christ and his return to God, his Father. It is also a time of transition for disciples, who are called to continue the mission of Jesus Christ on earth, spreading the Good News and teaching people how to follow the teachings of Jesus Christ.
The Ascension also has important theological significance in the Bible. It represents the triumph of Jesus Christ over sin and death, as well as the victory of eternal life over death. It shows that Jesus Christ is the bridge between God and men, and that his presence continues in the world through the Holy Spirit.
Finally, the Ascension is considered the beginning of the Church period, where the disciples of Jesus Christ began to come together to form a community of believers. The celebration of the Ascension is therefore an opportunity for Christians to reflect on their own mission on earth and their relationship with God, as well as their role in the Church.
In conclusion, the Ascension is a major event in the Christian Bible which marks the end of the earthly mission of Jesus Christ, his return to God, his Father, and the beginning of the period of the Church. It is loaded with important theological meanings and provides an opportunity for Christians to reflect on their own mission on earth and their relationship with God.
The celebration of the Ascension
As a Christian, the celebration of the Ascension is a time of great importance for us. It is a reminder that Jesus Christ is truly the Son of God, who died for our sins and was raised from the dead. The Ascension is proof that Jesus actually ascended to heaven to be with his Father, where he continues to intercede on our behalf.
It also reminds us that Jesus gave his disciples the mission to continue his work on Earth. We are called to be his witnesses and to spread the Gospel throughout the world, following his example of love and compassion for others.
The celebration of the Ascension is also a reminder that Jesus will one day return to judge the living and the dead. We are called to be ready for His return, living our lives in accordance with the teachings of the gospel and following God's commandments.
As a Christian, the celebration of the Ascension is an opportunity to celebrate our faith in Jesus Christ and his victory over death and sin. It is a time to remember that Jesus is always with us, even though he is now with God the Father. We can find comfort and hope in this truth, knowing that we are never alone in our struggles and trials.
The Mass of the Ascension is an obligatory mass for us Catholics and is celebrated in all parishes around the world. On Ascension Day, the altar is decorated with flowers and special liturgical ornaments. The priest also wears white liturgical ornaments, which symbolize the joy of the Ascension and the victory of Jesus over death and sin.
During the Ascension Mass, the biblical readings focus on the event of the Ascension. The responsorial psalm is often Psalm 47, which describes God's ascension to his throne in heaven. Universal prayer may include prayers for peace, justice and the unity of the Church.
After Mass, it is common to participate in processions or Eucharistic adorations. Processions are often held in the streets, where we worshipers carry banners and images of Jesus. Eucharistic adoration is a practice where the faithful pray before the Blessed Sacrament, which is displayed on the altar.
In short, the celebration of the Ascension is a true joy for us disciples of the Lord who celebrate his ascent into heaven to join the Father, we are invited to celebrate the Ascension with joy and to praise, glorify and adore the Lord who is of all eternal glory!
What a Christian can learn from the Ascension
The Ascension is an important event in the Christian life because it marks the end of the earthly ministry of Jesus Christ and his return to God, his Father. Here are some lessons a Christian can learn from the Ascension:
The importance of prayer : Before his Ascension, Jesus asked his disciples to stay in Jerusalem and pray to receive the Holy Spirit. This shows the importance of prayer to receive God's blessings and guidance in our life.
The importance of mission : After his Ascension, Jesus gave his disciples a mission to go into all the world to preach the Gospel and make disciples. This shows the importance of Christians following the example of Jesus and seeking to share the good news of the Gospel with those around them.
The Promise of Jesus' Second Coming : The angels told the disciples that Jesus would return in the same way that he ascended into heaven. This reminds Christians of the promise of the second coming of Jesus, who will come to judge the living and the dead and establish his eternal reign.
Jesus' place at the right hand of God : The Ascension marks the return of Jesus to God his Father, where he sits at his right hand. This reminds Christians of the exalted position and power of Jesus, who intercedes for us with God and is our advocate with the Father.
In short, the Ascension is a reminder of the importance of prayer, mission, the promise of Jesus' second coming, and Jesus' exalted place with God. We Christians can meditate on these teachings to deepen our relationship with God and our commitment to the mission of sharing the Gospel with the world through our words, our thoughts and our actions to glorify Christ our Savior and our Lord.
In conclusion, the Ascension is a key event in Christian history that has many implications for the lives of believers. This ascent of Jesus to heaven marks the end of his earthly ministry and his return to God, but it is also a reminder of the importance of prayer, of mission, of the promise of the second coming of Jesus and of the exalted place of Jesus with God. We Christians can meditate on these teachings to deepen our relationship with God and our commitment to the mission of sharing the Gospel with the world. By contemplating the Ascension of Jesus, we can renew our trust in his promise to one day return for us, and we are called to live in joyful anticipation of his return.
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