Tom’s Midweek Greeting
Crossroads Community Church
May 30, 2019
Hello, Crossroads Family!
I look forward to being back with you this coming Sunday! Starting this Sunday, and continuing through June and July, we’re going to work through a sermon series called “What Is God Like?”
What is God like? Can we know him? And, does it matter that we know him? What does a growing knowledge of God change about us and our lives?
A.W. Tozer, in his book The Knowledge of the Holy, said that what comes into our minds when we think about God is the most important thing about us.
Come Sunday for some good discussion and worship centered around an important concept in our lives – knowing God better. 10:00 worship at the Y! Come early and enjoy some fellowship beforehand!
Did you know that today marks 40 days since Easter which, according to the Bible, is the day on which the Lord Jesus ascended to heaven? It’s a day we often overlook in our busy lives, partly because it falls every year on a Thursday!
What is the significance of the Lord’s ascension, other than that it marks the end of his first visit to the earth? Consider these answers and Scripture references:
The Ascension was proof that God accepted Christ’s sacrifice.
Hebrews 1:3 says, “After he had provided purification for sins, he sat down at the right hand of the Majesty in heaven.” Later, in Hebrews 9:24, it’s written that he has entered into heaven “to appear in the presence of God for us.”
The Ascension made him head of the Church.
A longer passage, but one worth reading and pondering is this one in Ephesians 1:19-23:
These are in accordance with the working of the strength of his might which he brought about in Christ, when he raised him from the dead and seated him at his right hand in the heavenly places, far above all rule and authority and power and dominion, and every name that is named, not only in this age but also in the one to come. And he put all things in subjection under his feet, and gave him as head over all things to the church, which is his body, the fullness of him who fills all in all.
The Ascension led to the coming of the Holy Spirit.
Jesus had said to his disciples that the Helper (the Holy Spirit) would not come until he (Jesus) departed. On the Day of Pentecost, ten days after the Ascension, Peter preached these words in Jerusalem: “Therefore being exalted to the right hand of God, and having received from the Father the promise of the Holy Spirit, he has poured out this which you now see and hear” (Acts 2:33).
The Ascension led to the giving of spiritual gifts.
Psalm 68 actually prophesies the Lord’s ascension, and Paul uses that reference (Psalm 68:18) to explain that the ascended Lord blessed his people with special abilities with which to serve the church. “And he himself gave some to be apostles, some prophets, some evangelists, and some pastors and teachers, for the equipping of the saints for the work of ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ (Ephesians 4:10-12).
The Ascension led to Christ’s ministry of interceding for you and me.
The writer of the letter to the Hebrews compared the old Jewish priests, whose ministry had to be repeated again and again by succeeding generations of priests, to that of the ascended Christ whose ministry continues forever: “The former priests, on the one hand, existed in greater numbers because they were prevented by death from continuing; but Jesus, on the other hand, because he continues forever, holds his priesthood permanently. Therefore he is able also to save forever those who draw near to God through him, since he always lives to make intercession for them” (Hebrews 7:23-25).
The Ascension reminds us that Christ is coming back!
“If I go, I will come again and receive you to myself,” Jesus had told his disciples (John 14:3). In the instants following the Lord’s ascension, the disciples were told by two men in white clothing: “This Jesus, who has been taken up from you into heaven, will come in just the same way as you have watched him go into heaven” (Acts 1:11).
I hope you’ll take time this afternoon and evening to marvel at the importance and reality of the Lord’s ascension into heaven… and that you’ll be encouraged by what it means for you and me!
I’d like to offer to anyone interested a time to drop by my house during the summer months to pray together. I’m planning to set aside Thursday afternoons, from 4-5 pm, to pray with anyone who would like to. We’ll meet on my front porch. Drop by when you can, and stay as long as you’d like. We’ll pray for each other, and for other burdens God has laid on our hearts together. We’ll start next Thursday, June 6!
Mark your calendars for a couple of upcoming events:
- Baseball this Sunday night at Lyons Stadium. It’s Church Night and Fan Appreciation night, so admission is free, and with a church bulletin we can enter into a drawing for $75 for one church’s youth group ministry.
- Our next Men’s Discipleship & Fellowship evening will be Monday, June 17, 6:30-8:00, at Precision Coffee. We had a great time of sharing, study, and encouragement this past month. Hope you can make it in June!
I had a great time in South Carolina these past several days attending the wedding of my son Andrew and my new daughter-in-law Molly. Lots of laughter; lots of sunshine and very hot temperatures; lots of good food, family, and friends. Columbia, South Carolina, is a place of many memories for me, going back over 30 years ago to when Diana and I attended seminary there. Four of my children attended the same school, Columbia International University, and now three live there (although Andrew and Molly will soon be moving to Portland, Oregon!). Thank you for praying for me and the kids while we were gone, and for making it possible for me to be there. It was an important time for us to be together as a family. I look forward to sharing more about it with you!
Thanks for your prayers for my trip with Joe Chenoweth two weeks ago to the St Louis E-Free ministerial group. Joe gave a fantastic presentation of the Walk the Walls ministry we’ve had a part in piloting! Would you pray that God would raise up churches and church leaders for whom this material would be useful! Thank you!
I look forward to seeing you Sunday at 10!