1:9 Now when He had spoken these things, while they watched, He was taken up, and a cloud received Him out of their sight. 10 And while they looked steadfastly toward heaven as He went up, behold, two men stood by them in white apparel, 11 who also said, “Men of Galilee, why do you stand gazing up into heaven? This same Jesus, who was taken up from you into heaven, will so come in like manner as you saw Him go into heaven.”
I don't even know where to begin. 6 weeks earlier these eleven men abandoned Jesus to the angry mob and murderous officials. They watched from a distance while He was nailed to a cross and hung to die. They weren't just frightened. They were disillusioned. It was not supposed to go like this. The Messiah was supposed to conquer, not be conquered. For those initial hours/days they tried to come to grips with the fact He was dead. They tried to make sense of the things He had said which opposed everything they had been taught since childhood. Then early Sunday morning they get news He is missing. They go to the tomb and for sure it is empty. What does this mean? By Sunday evening they are huddled together with the doors locked trying to make sense of it all when none of it makes sense.
As they sit there scared and confused Jesus appears without knocking or opening the door. Is it Him? Is it a ghost? Understanding their fear and disillusionment Jesus demonstrates He is a real person with a real body.
Over the next 40 days He keeps visiting them. He keeps talking about the kingdom of heaven. It doesn't sound like the kingdom their parents and rabbis talked about. Now they finally get the courage on the 40th day to ask "Are you going to restore the kingdom to Israel now?" He cuts them off. It was just like when Peter tried to defend Jesus with the sword in the garden the night He was arrested. Jesus just shut him down.
Instead He kept talking about the Spirit of God and power and being witnesses in Jerusalem and all over the world. What is He talking about? Then just as He is finishing His last sentence He starts to lift off the ground. Is He floating? Walking on water wasn't freaky enough so now He's walking on air? No He's not walking. He's floating straight up like steam off the lake! They all stood in shocked silence until He disappeared into the clouds like an eagle soaring upwards. As if their lives weren't weird and confusing enough!
Suddenly the silence was broken, yet the voices belonged to none of them. "Men what are you staring at? This SAME Jesus that you saw taken from you into heaven will so return in the way you saw Him go into heaven."
That clears up everything. Two strangers in white say a couple of things and all the confusion is over right? Hardly. None of this was taught them at home or in school or at the synagogue. They are so far off the script that if east and west agreed to meet together they wouldn't find the script on the way...
Why am I pointing all this out? Because Jesus poured His Spirit out on these men. He gave His Dynamite to these men. He entrusted these men to be His witnesses. These fumbling confused men filled with bad theology and false expectations were to be the conduits for the Catalyst (Dynamite) that would turn the world upside down.
Seems highly unlikely doesn't it?
Lesson: Your limitations, inabilities, and hang ups have nothing to do with what He can do in and through you. Stick around and see what happens next...