Mark 16:19–20; Luke 24:49–53
19 So then, after the Lord had spoken to them, He was received up into heaven, and sat down at the right hand of God. 20 And they went out and preached everywhere, the Lord working with them and confirming the word through the accompanying signs. Amen.Mark 16:19-20
The Marcan account of the ascension is simplistic and concise. He ascended, sat at the right hand of God, and the disciples went forth and preached the word with accompanying signs.
49 “Behold, I send the Promise of My Father upon you; but tarry in the city of Jerusalem until you are endued with power from on high.”Luke 24:49–53 (NKJV)
50 And He led them out as far as Bethany, and He lifted up His hands and blessed them. 51 Now it came to pass, while He blessed them, that He was parted from them and carried up into heaven. 52 And they worshiped Him, and returned to Jerusalem with great joy, 53 and were continually in the temple praising and blessing God. Amen.
In the account in Luke, Jesus’ ascension is expanded to include some of His instructions to the disciples, including waiting in the upper room until the Holy Spirit fell upon them. This account describes the location, Bethany, and His blessing on the disciples. These accounts are similar, but contain compatible, yet differing, information. Jesus made some important strides in passing on final instructions and blessings to His disciples. He is presumed to have ascended into heaven, His original location. He anoints and calls them to preach and tell the good news of Christ, and they carry out His commands. We should follow the example of the early disciples and tell the good news in the anointing and calling of Christ. Just as the early church exploded in growth after Christ’s ascension, so can we today!