By Jarrod Belcher
“…The Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, he will teach you all things and bring to your remembrance all that I have said to you.” John 15:26. The ascension of Jesus Christ is one of the most important events in Christianity. In the past few weeks I have written about how the ascension was the beginning of Christ’s glorification and that it marked the coronation of Jesus as our King. Today we will see that the ascension of Christ paved the way for the giving of the Holy Spirit to all believers.
Imagine the difficulty of hearing that Jesus would be going back to the Father after having been near him for three full years. He had taught them personally, loved them, and shared meals with them. They had laughed together, and they had watched him heal the people of their diseases. News that Jesus would be going away would have been tragic news. Furthermore, the disciples on their own didn’t seem to be able to do much right at all. Yet Jesus tells them it is better this way. How could this be?
Jesus was absolutely right about it being better for them that he would go away. Before he left they were a bumbling crew of misfits. After he ascended and the Holy Spirit was given to them they became the Apostles that we now know who established the church in impossible circumstances. They set the doctrine of the church and endured suffering by the power of the Holy Spirit. We have also found Christ’s words to be true that it would be better for the Holy Spirit to come. Here are some of the benefits of the Spirit for every believer: The Spirit indwells God’s people, shines light on the Scriptures for understanding, sanctifies the individual from sin, empowers us for service to Christ our King, and assures us continually of the fact that God is for us. His coming at Pentecost marked a new time in history. The Old Testament saints had experienced the Spirit’s work but not in this type of fullness.
Truly the ascension was great for Christ and great for his followers.