Read for This Week’s Study: Hebrews 9:24; Exodus 19:3-4; Hebrews 12:18–21; Leviticus 16:1-2; Hebrews 10:19–22; Colossians 3:1.
Memory Text: “For Christ has not entered the holy places made with hands, which are copies of the true, but into heaven itself, now to appear in the presence of God for us” (Hebrews 9:24, NKJV).
When the disciples returned from the Mount of Olives, right after Jesus had ascended to heaven, they were filled with joy and triumph. Their Master and Friend had ascended to a position of power over the world and had invited them to approach God in His name with the absolute confidence that God would respond favorably to their prayers (John 14:13-14). Even though they continued in the world, attacked by the forces of evil, their hope was strong. They knew that Jesus had ascended to prepare a place for them (John 14:1-3). They knew that Jesus was the Captain of their salvation, and that He had opened a way into the heavenly homeland through His blood.
The ascension of Jesus to heaven is central to the theology of Hebrews. It marks the beginning of Jesus’ rule and the beginning of His High Priestly ministry in our behalf. Finally, and more important, Jesus’ ascension marks the moment that the new covenant, which provides the means through which we can approach God boldly through faith, has been inaugurated. It is our privilege now to approach God with confidence through Jesus and the merits of His righteousness.
Study this week’s lesson to prepare for Sabbath, March 5.