Lutheran Worship and Resources

Thursday, May 26, 2022

Ascension 2022

 

Ascension 2022. Holy Communion

7 PM Central Daylight Time, May 13th, 2021

Pastor Gregory L. Jackson


Vimeo player here:




The melody is linked to the name of the hymn.
The lyrics are linked to the Bethany Lutheran Hymnal page.

The Confession of Sins
The Absolution
The Introit p. 16

Ye men of Galilee, why stand ye gazing up into heaven? 
Hallelujah!
This same Jesus which is taken up from you into heaven shall so come in like manner as ye have seen Him go into heaven: 
Hallelujah! Hallelujah!
Psalm. Oh, clap your hands, all ye people: shout unto God with the voice of triumph.

The Gloria Patri
The Kyrie p. 17
The Gloria in Excelsis
The Salutation and Collect p. 19

Grant, we beseech Thee, Almighty God, that like as we do believe Thine only-begotten Son, our Lord Jesus Christ, to have ascended into the heavens, 
so may we may also in heart and mind thither ascend and 
with Him continually dwell; who liveth, etc.

The Epistle and Gradual    Acts 1:1-11

Hallelujah! Hallelujah!

V. God is gone up with a shout: 

the Lord with the sound of a trumpet. Hallelujah!

V. Thou hast ascended on high: 

Thou hast led captivity captive. Hallelujah!


The Gospel                        Mark 16:14-20
Glory be to Thee, O Lord!
Praise be to Thee, O Christ!
The Nicene Creed p. 22
The Sermon Hymn #656       Behold a Host 

Historical Christianity

The Hymn #341       Crown Him with Many Crowns       
The Preface p. 24
The Sanctus p. 26
The Lord's Prayer p. 27
The Words of Institution
The Agnus Dei p. 28
The Nunc Dimittis p. 29
The Benediction p. 31
The Hymn #294            O Word of God 




In Our Prayers
  • Lynda Roper is undergoing tests; Pastor Jim Schroeder and Chris Shrader, Kermit and Maria Way, Callie and her mother Peggy, and others facing tests, surgery, and treatment.
  • Our national leaders, the justice system.
  • The families who lost children to the drugged, 18 year-old shooter.
  • The Loy materials are greatly appreciated by readers - thanks to Alec Satin, the Lutheran Librarian.
 


The Ending of Luke's Gospel

KJV Luke 24:49 And, behold, I send the promise of my Father upon you: but tarry ye in the city of Jerusalem, until ye be endued with power from on high. 50 And he led them out as far as to Bethany, and he lifted up his hands, and blessed them. 51 And it came to pass, while he blessed them, he was parted from them, and carried up into heaven. 52 And they worshipped him, and returned to Jerusalem with great joy: 53 And were continually in the temple, praising and blessing God. Amen.

[The ending of Luke fits with the opening of Acts, which Luke also wrote. Luke's two contributions comprise 25% of the New Testament.]

KJV Acts 1:1 The former treatise have I made, O Theophilus, of all that Jesus began both to do and teach, 2 Until the day in which he was taken up, after that he through the Holy Ghost had given commandments unto the apostles whom he had chosen: 3 To whom also he shewed himself alive after his passion by many infallible proofs, being seen of them forty days, and speaking of the things pertaining to the kingdom of God: 4 And, being assembled together with them, commanded them that they should not depart from Jerusalem, but wait for the promise of the Father, which, saith he, ye have heard of me. 5 For John truly baptized with water; but ye shall be baptized with the Holy Ghost not many days hence. 6 When they therefore were come together, they asked of him, saying, Lord, wilt thou at this time restore again the kingdom to Israel? 7 And he said unto them, It is not for you to know the times or the seasons, which the Father hath put in his own power. 8 But ye shall receive power, after that the Holy Ghost is come upon you: and ye shall be witnesses unto me both in Jerusalem, and in all Judaea, and in Samaria, and unto the uttermost part of the earth. 9 And when he had spoken these things, while they beheld, he was taken up; and a cloud received him out of their sight. 10 And while they looked stedfastly toward heaven as he went up, behold, two men stood by them in white apparel; 11 Which also said, Ye men of Galilee, why stand ye gazing up into heaven? this same Jesus, which is taken up from you into heaven, shall so come in like manner as ye have seen him go into heaven.

The Gospel for the Ascension
KJV Mark 16:14 Afterward he appeared unto the eleven as they sat at meat, and upbraided them with their unbelief and hardness of heart, because they believed not them which had seen him after he was risen. 15 And he said unto them, Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature. 16 He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved; but he that believeth not shall be damned. 17 And these signs shall follow them that believe; In my name shall they cast out devils; they shall speak with new tongues; 18 They shall take up serpents; and if they drink any deadly thing, it shall not hurt them; they shall lay hands on the sick, and they shall recover. 19 So then after the Lord had spoken unto them, he was received up into heaven, and sat on the right hand of God. 20 And they went forth, and preached every where, the Lord working with them, and confirming the word with signs following. Amen.

Ascension Prayer

O Jesus Christ, Thou almighty Son of God, who art no longer in humiliation here on earth, but sittest at the right hand of Thy Father, Lord over all things: We beseech Thee, send us Thy Holy Spirit; give Thy Church pious pastors, preserve Thy word, control and restrain the devil and all who would oppress us: mightily uphold Thy kingdom, until all Thine enemies shall have been put under Thy feet, that we may hold the victory over sin, death, and the devil, through Thee, who livest and reignest with God the Father and the Holy Ghost, one true God, world without end. Amen.

Historical Christianity

KJV Acts 1:1 The former treatise have I made, O Theophilus, of all that Jesus began both to do and teach, 2 Until the day in which he was taken up, after that he through the Holy Ghost had given commandments unto the apostles whom he had chosen:

Introduction
The so-called scholars of today have built a house of mirrors, where everyone can become lost and confused. As many of us have seen (in both cases, the carnival and divinity school) a house of mirrors is bewildering - on purpose. One begins to doubt reality.

The Book of Acts begins by referring to the former treatise, which is the Gospel of Luke. I remember the Harvard ThD saying, "The name means friend of God -Theophilus - so maybe there was no such person."

When I told another Harvard ThD that he was wrong about the early Christians being violent, he asked me in front of the pastors, "What did I get wrong?" I said, "You went to Harvard."
The school was the center of Unitarianism early on and was completely rationalistic.

The rationalists assume the worst. And if the information about the Bible is grounded in fact, they reject it any way. The first two verses of Acts are based on:
1. This book is related to and connected to the Gospel of Luke.
2. This second work confirms the miracle of the Resurrection along with the miracle of the Ascension.

In studying a homiletics book in the library at Waterloo in Ontario, the writer criticized a sermon about the Ascension because it gave the impression that this actually happened. Is that the general today? How many congregations make this a holy day and celebrate the Lord's Supper? Very few.

Some pastors have dropped Advent and Lent because not enough people come to hear about pastoral suggestions that these things never did happen. The Ascension gives them even more pain, because this wonderful assurance makes the divinity of Christ even more dramatic than the Resurrection.

The Christian Faith is historical, truthful in all respects, not allegorical or symbolic or mythical.

3 To whom also he shewed himself alive after his passion by many infallible proofs, being seen of them forty days, and speaking of the things pertaining to the kingdom of God: 

The dramatic expansion of Christianity came from the fact of the Resurrection of Christ, the hundreds of witnesses (1 Corinthians 15) and Apostolic preaching. Persecution and execution also expanded the Faith.
KJV 1 Corinthians 15 Moreover, brethren, I declare unto you the gospel which I preached unto you, which also ye have received, and wherein ye stand;2 By which also ye are saved, if ye keep in memory what I preached unto you, unless ye have believed in vain.
3 For I delivered unto you first of all that which I also received, how that Christ died for our sins according to the scriptures;4 And that he was buried, and that he rose again the third day according to the scriptures:
5 And that he was seen of Cephas, then of the twelve:
6 After that, he was seen of above five hundred brethren at once; of whom the greater part remain unto this present, but some are fallen asleep.7 After that, he was seen of James; then of all the apostles. 8 And last of all he was seen of me also, as of one born out of due time.
The true clowns say Christianity expanded so fast because Paul was such a good salesman. (See the news on bitcoin. The excitement only lasts a short time.)

Christianity began with various households and groups as believers before the Resurrection. They were gathered and taught by the Apostles so they could have pastors and write down the Scriptures in due time.

The 500+ witnesses were trained by the risen Christ, just as Paul was. Would that not have a permanent effect? Yes, some lost out because they let Satan ply his trade with them, just as he does now. The simple fact is - where there is faith in Jesus Christ the Savior, faith spreads and does its work, because the Word always travels with the Spirit, never apart from the Spirit, and never without effect. Never without is impossible to defeat and is even more clear than always. The double negative serves to eliminate the exceptions, such as when someone says, "I always do this or that..." The first response is "Always????"

4 And, being assembled together with them, commanded them that they should not depart from Jerusalem, but wait for the promise of the Father, which, saith he, ye have heard of me. 5 For John truly baptized with water; but ye shall be baptized with the Holy Ghost not many days hence.

Jesus predicted the Day of Pentecost (a Jewish holy day) - and baptism by the Holy Spirit. This is also in the Gospel of John in a different form. How else could we have a New Testament in perfect harmony? The Holy Spirit is the editor, and they were the living preachers of the Truth.

6 When they therefore were come together, they asked of him, saying, Lord, wilt thou at this time restore again the kingdom to Israel? 7 And he said unto them, It is not for you to know the times or the seasons, which the Father hath put in his own power. 8 But ye shall receive power, after that the Holy Ghost is come upon you: and ye shall be witnesses unto me both in Jerusalem, and in all Judaea, and in Samaria, and unto the uttermost part of the earth.

This restoration word is used by modernists like Barth to say, "Regardless of your faith, the entire world will be saved." As a Calvinist, Barth was keen to say that if Jesus died for the sins of the world, then everyone is forgiven, just as the Objective Justification fanatics claim. Barth has been very influential for many church leaders.

But - is that not spine-tingling to have Jesus promise they would be witnesses to the uttermost part of the earth? This did happen, and we see the evidence today, though many want to deny it.

9 And when he had spoken these things, while they beheld, he was taken up; and a cloud received him out of their sight. 10 And while they looked stedfastly toward heaven as he went up, behold, two men stood by them in white apparel; 11 Which also said, Ye men of Galilee, why stand ye gazing up into heaven? this same Jesus, which is taken up from you into heaven, shall so come in like manner as ye have seen him go into heaven.

Here we see the Two Natures of Christ - divine and human. They saw Him taken away, the nearest God could come to revealing so much. And He will return the same way. We will see Him if the time has come. If not, we will see Him in heaven.

In Part Two of Pilgrim's Progress, Christiana struggles in the last moments as her life ebbs away. Then she says, "I see Him! I see Him!"


 Christiana entering the river, angels on the other side.

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