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Sermon Study - Acts 1:6-11

“Christ’s Ascension: The King Commissions His Church” from Acts 1:6-11. You can listen to the sermon here.

Sermon Review

As we come to verse 6, let’s remind ourselves of the context. Jesus has been raised from the dead, and he has been appearing to his disciples over a period of forty days. During this time, he has continued to teach them about the kingdom of God, and he has reminded them to wait for the coming of the promised Holy Spirit. Implicit in that promise is the reality that the Risen Christ will not always be with them. He will go again to his Father. All of this, then, raises the question, “What should the apostles do when that happens?” When Christ is gone, what’s next? Will the end of all things immediately come? Should they just wait around? When Christ is gone, what’s next? Our passage answers that question. In vv6-11, we see three truths, each that deals with the reality of Christ’s departure and what the apostles should once that occurs:

  1. A Corrective Commission
  2. A Heavenly Coronation
  3. A Compelling Promise

Study Question #1 

In verse 8, Jesus commissions the apostles to be his witness not only in Jerusalem, Judea and Samaria, but also to the end of the earth. This puts the church’s mission in a global context. This matches God’s purpose for Israel, as revealed even in the Old Testament. Read these Old Testament passages, and answer the following questions:

  1. Genesis 12:1-3
  2. Psalm 67
  3. Isaiah 49:1-7

How do these passages reveal God’s heart to bring blessing and redemption not only to Israel, but also to the ends of the earth? What practical application should we draw from this point?

Study Question #2

In verse 9, Jesus ascends again to the Father. If all of Scripture is about Jesus Christ (cf. Luke 24:25-27), read the following psalms and answer the question, “How does this passage anticipate Christ’s ascension?"

  1. Psalm 2
  2. Psalm 24
  3. Psalm 110

Personal Reflection #1

Luke clearly connects the church’s commission and Christ’s ascension. The result is that Christ’s ascension should give us boldness and hope as we go about the mission of witnessing to Christ. In addition to boldness and hope, what other effects does Christ’s ascension have on the church’s mission? In what other ways does the ascension encourage us as Christ’s church?

Personal Reflection #2

Spend some time this week in prayer, asking God to increase your trust in the Risen and Ascended Christ. Pray that the result would be greater boldness and hope that leads to further witness to the gospel.

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