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Page 95

    Before Christopher Columbus discovered the "New World," the Spanish coat of arms bore the motto: "Ne Plus Ultra," meaning "There is nothing beyond."

    After his discovery of the Western world the word "Ne" was dropped from their motto which then read: "Plus Ultra" - "There is more beyond!"

    The world's view and manner of life often reveal a "There is nothing beyond" attitude. How is Christ's resurrection a clear testimony of "There is more beyond"?


CHRIST'S ASCENSION

Forty days after His resurrection, Christ ascended into heaven. During the forty days between His resurrection and ascension, He appeared to individuals and groups, but in a different manner. These differences include the following:

    1 . He appeared to His people only, and not to the world.

    2. He appeared to His children sporadically; He no longer physically lived with them on a daily basis. This transition time trained His Church to walk less by physical sight and more by spiritual faith.

    3. While His appearances were fewer, in them He taught the gospel message more clearly and deeply to His disciples.


Christ's ascension into heaven is His second step of exaltation. It is a complement to, and the completion of, His resurrection. Through His active and passive obedience, He not only removed the curse of the law, but He also earned a right to eternal life and glory. This is witnessed by His resurrection to life and ascension into glory.

Christ's ascension into heaven was actual, visible, and local, as shown in the chart on the following page.


How many other events in Scripture can you name which lasted forty days or forty years? What does the number "forty" represent in the Bible?


 

And it came to pass, as He sat at meat with them, He took bread, and blessed it, and brake, and gave to them.

And their eyes were opened, and they knew Him; and He vanished out of their sight.

And they said one to another, Did not our heart burn within us, while He talked with us by the way, and while He opened to us the Scriptures?

- Luke 24:30-32

 

  • Complement - Something that completes or makes perfect
  • Active Obedience - Christ's living of a perfectly sinless life, thereby earning eternal life for His Church
  • Passive Obedience - Christ's bearing the full punishment of God for sin, thereby paying the full death penalty for His Church

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