Ascension (Ephesians #21)

Text: Ephesians 4:9-10

Review of the descent of the Lord Jesus Christ.

  • Jesus Christ conquers sin by subduing it in his body
  • Jesus Christ lived in flesh and blood dealing with all the temptation that comes with carnal corruption, yet without sin.  So he conquers sin in the flesh.  He subdues corruption under incorruption by yielding his own flesh and blood to the spirit of God all the days of his life.
    • Sometimes we look for victory without a fight and things don’t work that way.
    • Even God himself when preparing an incorruptible body for his people came down and personally defeated sin in the flesh so He could offer an incorruptible body to his people.
  • The Bible says in Matthew 12:40 For as Jonas was three days and three nights in the whale’s belly; so shall the Son of man be three days and three nights in the heart of the earth.
  • While Jesus Christ’s body lay in a grave like Jonah’s body lay in the whale, his soul went down into hell.  Acts 2:27, 31 Because thou wilt not leave my soul in hell, neither wilt thou suffer thine Holy One to see corruption…He seeing this before spake of the resurrection of Christ, that his soul was not left in hell, neither his flesh did see corruption.
  • After the Lord Jesus Christ has subdued sin and secured for himself an incorruptible body by never yielding to the temptations in the flesh, he lays the body down in the grave and himself, his soul, goes down into the heart of the earth.
  • Matthew 16:18 And I say also unto thee, That thou art Peter, and upon this rock I will build my church; and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it.
  • Revelation 1:18 I am he that liveth, and was dead; and, behold, I am alive for evermore, Amen; and have the keys of hell and of death.
  • Matthew 27:52-53 And the graves were opened; and many bodies of the saints which slept arose, And came out of the graves after his resurrection, and went into the holy city, and appeared unto many.

Promise of the Father

  • (Acts 1:4) Promise of the Father is sending the Holy Ghost John 14:15-17
  • John 16:7 Nevertheless I tell you the truth; It is expedient for you that I go away: for if I go not away, the Comforter will not come unto you; but if I depart, I will send him unto you.  

Power to be witness

  • (Acts 1:8) Power to be witnesses
  • Unpardonable sin – (Matthew 12:31) This is why Jesus said the unpardonable sin would be blaspheming the Holy Ghost.  After the Lord Jesus Christ would subdue sin in his body and provide an incorruptible body, the Holy Spirit would be sent as the final appeal to man.

Provision for God’s work to be multiplied

  • (Ephesians 4:10) Jesus Christ fills all
  • Not a physical filling, but a spiritual filling.  The work would not be limited to one physical body, but now go on in multitudes simultaneously.
  • Gifts of the spirit
    • All of God’s gifts are packaged in truth so that a soul must receive the truth.
    • Romans 1:11 For I long to see you, that I may impart unto you some spiritual gift, to the end ye may be established;
    • 1 Timothy 4:14 Neglect not the gift that is in thee, which was given thee by prophecy…
    • The transaction that must take place is that you accept the truth that God is telling you and then receive the benefit of that truth.
    • God’s gifts are measured out by grace through faith
  • Romans 12:3 For I say, through the grace given unto me, to every man that is among you, not to think of himself more highly than he ought to think; but to think soberly, according as God hath dealt to every man the measure of faith.
  • Bring a teaspoon and He’ll fill your teaspoon.  Bring a dump truck and He’ll fill your truck.
  • Meted according to your measure.
  • Accept the truth and receive the benefit from God as Paul says in Galatians 3:22 But the scripture hath concluded all under sin, that the promise by faith of Jesus Christ might be given to them that believe.
  • God’s gifts can be neglected – 1 Timothy 4:14
  • God’s gifts need to be exercised – 1 Peter 4:10 As every man hath received the gift, even so minister the same one to another, as good stewards of the manifold grace of God.
    • It’s how you’re connected to the body.  1 Corinthians 12:18 But now hath God set the members every one of them in the body, as it hath pleased him.