Jesus’ disciples were bewildered and confused. After all that their Messiah had gone through (including suffering and death which they certainly hadn’t expected), surely there need be no more delay for the long-awaited Kingdom that Jesus had been talking so much about–right? (See Acts 1:3 & following.)
Finally they just had to ask outright: “Are you going to set up the Kingdom now and be our King?”
Jesus: You’re not being copied on the details, but I have an assignment for you: You will be my witnesses, telling people about me everywhere—in Jerusalem, throughout Judea, in Samaria, and to the ends of the earth. Then He takes off!
Still bewildered, they gaze into the sky until He disappears from their sight and an angel assures them that Jesus will be back. Still, though, they weren’t told when!
Why the delay? As the disciples obeyed orders, God’s wonderful plan unfolded in a way they had never really understood before. It was time for the world to hear and be included in God’s kingdom—including Gentiles like me! (By the way, Judas couldn’t wait, accept, and obey. When the Kingdom didn’t materialize on his schedule, he became disillusioned and—well, we know that story….)
Living with ambiguity isn’t easy for me. I want to know what’s going to happen and when, and what my part is in it. I have much to learn from these first believers: waiting, trusting, obeying one step at a time. Still, as I watch and wait and work on my “assignments,” my heart cry is… “Thy kingdom come. Thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven!”
Maranatha! Come, Lord Jesus!