Temple Baptist Church - 5-4-2014
A. For several months, we have dealt with the Tabernacle in the Wilderness and its foreshadowing of our Lord Jesus Christ. We ended with the Mercy Seat last week and the two ascensions of our Lord.
1. He ascended as our High Priest and placed His precious blood on the Mercy Seat in heaven: the culmination of the person and work of Christ.
Hebrews 9:22-26 And almost all things are by the law purged with blood; and without shedding of blood is no remission. (23) It was therefore necessary that the patterns of things in the heavens should be purified with these; but the heavenly things themselves with better sacrifices than these. (24) For Christ is not entered into the holy places made with hands, which are the figures of the true; but into heaven itself, now to appear in the presence of God for us: (25) Nor yet that he should offer himself often, as the high priest entereth into the holy place every year with blood of others; (26) For then must he often have suffered since the foundation of the world: but now once in the end of the world hath he appeared to put away sin by the sacrifice of himself.
2. In Acts 1, we find the second ascension of our Lord from the Mount of Olives.
Acts 1:9-11 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.
B. The two ascensions of our Lord were important for many reasons but I want to look at two for a minute.
1. The first ascension purchased our eternal salvation through the applied blood. The blood of Christ was the righteous requirement of a thrice holy God for the payment of sin.
2. The second ascension provided for us an Advocate, Intercessor, and High Priest as well as the promise of the fulfillment of His second coming for His church.
John 14:3 And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again, and receive you unto myself; that where I am, there ye may be also.
C. In our text, I want to look at just a few things that the Lord left with His children when He ascended to heaven. Our text has an Old Testament sister verse that is important:
Psalms 68:18 Thou hast ascended on high, thou hast led captivity captive: thou hast received gifts for men; yea, for the rebellious also, that the LORD God might dwell among them. (“For the rebellious also, that the LORD God might dwell among them.” I know the interpretation of that verse is found in 1 Peter 3:19 but, by application, I thank the Lord that He gives the same gifts to the rebellious that He gives to the obedient and that He also dwells among the disobedient children also. )
D. While on this earth, our Lord provided every need for His disciples. They lacked nothing. When our Lord ascended, His disciples no longer had His physical presence but He provided for all of their needs in His physical absence. I emphasize physical absence because He remains constantly with His people. (Hebrews 13:5b) The Lord is good to us all of the time and gives us perfectly what we need for both life and godliness.
2 Peter 1:3 According as his divine power hath given unto us all things that pertain unto life and godliness, through the knowledge of him that hath called us to glory and virtue:
1. The Gift of All Things – Romans 8:32 He that spared not his own Son, but delivered him up for us all, how shall he not with him also freely give us all things?
2. The Gift of The Holy Spirit - Romans 5:5 And hope maketh not ashamed; because the love of God is shed abroad in our hearts by the Holy Ghost which is given unto us.
3. The Gift of Assurance - John 10:28 And I give unto them eternal life; and they shall never perish, neither shall any man pluck them out of my hand.
1 John 5:11-13 And this is the record, that God hath given to us eternal life, and this life is in his Son. (12) He that hath the Son hath life; and he that hath not the Son of God hath not life. (13) These things have I written unto you that believe on the name of the Son of God; that ye may know that ye have eternal life, and that ye may believe on the name of the Son of God.
4. The Gift of His Word – 2 Peter 1:19 We have also a more sure word of prophecy; whereunto ye do well that ye take heed, as unto a light that shineth in a dark place, until the day dawn, and the day star arise in your hearts:
5. The Gift of God’s Men - Ephesians 4:11-12 And he gave some, apostles; and some, prophets; and some, evangelists; and some, pastors and teachers; (12) For the perfecting of the saints, for the work of the ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ:
6. The Gift of Faith - Hebrews 11:1-3 Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen. (2) For by it the elders obtained a good report. (3) Through faith we understand that the worlds were framed by the word of God, so that things which are seen were not made of things which do appear.
7. The Gift of His Power - Ephesians 3:20 Now unto him that is able to do exceeding abundantly above all that we ask or think, according to the power that worketh in us,
Philippians 4:13 I can do all things through Christ which strengtheneth me.
8. The Gift of Wisdom - James 1:5 If any of you lack wisdom, let him ask of God, that giveth to all men liberally, and upbraideth not; and it shall be given him. Upbraided not
9. The Gift of Comfort - 2 Corinthians 1:3-4 Blessed be God, even the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of mercies, and the God of all comfort; (4) Who comforteth us in all our tribulation, that we may be able to comfort them which are in any trouble, by the comfort wherewith we ourselves are comforted of God. 2 Cor 1 comfortless
10. The Gift of Grace - 2 Corinthians 12:9 And he said unto me, My grace is sufficient for thee: for my strength is made perfect in weakness. Most gladly therefore will I rather glory in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me.
11. The Gift of Provision - Matthew 6:33 But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you.
Philippians 4:19 But my God shall supply all your need according to his riches in glory by Christ Jesus.
12. The Gift of Presence – Hebrews 13:5 Let your conversation be without covetousness; and be content with such things as ye have: for he hath said, I will never leave thee, nor forsake thee.
13. The Gift of Protection - 1 John 4:4 Ye are of God, little children, and have overcome them: because greater is he that is in you, than he that is in the world.
14. The Gift of Promise - John 14:3-4 And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again, and receive you unto myself; that where I am, there ye may be also. (4) And whither I go ye know, and the way ye know.