Why the Ascension of Jesus Matters

Why the Ascension of Jesus Matters

Tomorrow we celebrate the ascension of Jesus, a date marked out 40 days after his resurrection, when he departed from earth and returned bodily to heaven (Luke 24:50–53, Acts 1:9–11).

On first glance, Jesus rising up in the clouds may seem like something out of a Monty Python skit. It’s perhaps a little difficult to understand, maybe even a little bizarre to grasp, and even more difficult to apply. And yet the ascension of Jesus carries with it a full range of implications for our lives, something we discover in today’s episode of the Authors on the Line podcast.

I put two pastor-theologians on the line to explain. First up, Gerrit Scott Dawson, senior pastor of First Presbyterian Church in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, and author of Jesus Ascended: The Meaning of Christ’s Continuing Incarnation (P&R, 2004), a standard theological work on the topic.

And secondly, we hear from Jonny Woodrow, pastor, theologian, and director of the Porterbrook Network headquartered in the United Kingdom. He is the author of a fantastic little book just released under the title Ascension: Humanity in the Presence of God (Christian Focus, 2013), a book he co-authored with Tim Chester.

To listen to our 27-minute conversation, subscribe to the Authors on the Line podcast in iTunes here. Download the mp3 here (18.5 MB). Or listen from the resource page through the following link:

Why the Ascension of Jesus Matters: An Interview with Gerrit Scott Dawson and Jonny Woodrow (27 Minutes)


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Tony Reinke (@tonyreinke) is a content strategist at Desiring God, blogger, the author of Lit! A Christian Guide to Reading Books (2011) and John Newton on the Christian Life: To Live Is Christ (2015), and hosts the Ask Pastor John and Authors on the Line podcasts. He lives in the Twin Cities with his wife, Karalee, and their three children.