Chapel of the Ascension

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Places of Interest

Chapel of the Ascension:
Ascension and Return of Christ

Location

 

1. The Chapel of Ascension sits at the highest place on the Mount of Olives.

 

2. Near the Ascension Chapel is the Russian Orthodox Church of the Ascension built in 1870, which is another traditional site of the ascension. It is located near a tall tower in the village of A-Tur.

 

Historical Background

 

1. Early Christians soon memorialized this place after Christ’s resurrection.

 

2. In 384 AD, a pilgrim named Egeria found two footprints embedded in a rock that she claimed were those of Christ when He ascended to heaven.

 

3. Constantine's mother, Helena, had a church built here at the end of the 4th Century as a memorial chapel.

 

4. This chapel was rebuilt in the 7th Century.

 

5. It was again rebuilt by the Crusaders around 1100 AD.

 

6. In 1198 AD, the chapel was destroyed by Saladin under Ottoman Muslim conquest, and a mosque was built on its site. However, part of the original chapel was left intact. The bases of the columns can be seen today. 

 

7. At this time, since the chapel was primarily used by Christians, a mosque was built during the Ottoman period on the south side of the compound, and the chapel was converted into a Muslim shrine.

 

8. Today, both Christians and Muslims visit this place, and it’s open to all.

 

9. Because it’s the highest place on the Mount of Olives, it’s the believed place from where Christ ascended back to heaven.

 

10. It’s also the believed place where Christ will return at His second coming.

 

Places of Interest

 

1. Chapel of the Ascension

 

2. Russian Orthodox Church of the Ascension

 

3. Mount of Olives

 

4. Old City Jerusalem 

 

Location of the Chapel of the Ascension in the Bible

 

1. Christ ascended back to heaven from the top of the Mount of Olives.
Acts 1:6–12: So when they had come together, they asked him, “Lord, will you at this time restore the kingdom to Israel?” 7 He said to them, “It is not for you to know times or seasons that the Father has fixed by his own authority. 8 But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you, and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the end of the earth.” 9 And when he had said these things, as they were looking on, he was lifted up, and a cloud took him out of their sight. 10 And while they were gazing into heaven as he went, behold, two men stood by them in white robes, 11 and said, “Men of Galilee, why do you stand looking into heaven? This Jesus, who was taken up from you into heaven, will come in the same way as you saw him go into heaven.” 12 Then they returned to Jerusalem from the mount called Olivet, which is near Jerusalem, a Sabbath day's journey away.

 

2. The return of Christ to earth will be one of the greatest culminating events of Scripture. 
Zechariah 14:4: On that day his feet shall stand on the Mount of Olives that lies before Jerusalem on the east, and the Mount of Olives shall be split in two from east to west by a very wide valley, so that one half of the Mount shall move northward, and the other half southward.”

 

3. Every being that has ever been created will see Christ’s return.
Revelation 1:7: Behold, he is coming with the clouds, and every eye will see him, even those who pierced him, and all tribes of the earth will wail on account of him. Even so. Amen.

 

4. Christ’s return conquers and flips all evil powers into submission to Him.
Revelation 19:15: From his mouth comes a sharp sword with which to strike down the nations, and he will rule them with a rod of iron. He will tread the winepress of the fury of the wrath of God the Almighty.

 

5. Christ coming will be in extreme power and great glory.
Matthew 24:29–31: Immediately after the tribulation of those days the sun will be darkened, and the moon will not give its light, and the stars will fall from heaven, and the powers of the heavens will be shaken. 30 Then will appear in heaven the sign of the Son of Man, and then all the tribes of the earth will mourn, and they will see the Son of Man coming on the clouds of heaven with power and great glory. 31 And he will send out his angels with a loud trumpet call, and they will gather his elect from the four winds, from one end of heaven to the other.

 

Revelation 6:12–17: When he opened the sixth seal, I looked, and behold, there was a great earthquake, and the sun became black as sackcloth, the full moon became like blood, 13 and the stars of the sky fell to the earth as the fig tree sheds its winter fruit when shaken by a gale. 14 The sky vanished like a scroll that is being rolled up, and every mountain and island was removed from its place. 15 Then the kings of the earth and the great ones and the generals and the rich and the powerful, and everyone, slave and free, hid themselves in the caves and among the rocks of the mountains, 16 calling to the mountains and rocks, "Fall on us and hide us from the face of him who is seated on the throne, and from the wrath of the Lamb, 17 for the great day of their wrath has come, and who can stand?"

 

6. Believers and angels will return with Christ in power and great glory as well.
Revelation 19:11–15: Then I saw heaven opened, and behold, a white horse! The one sitting on it is called Faithful and True, and in righteousness he judges and makes war. 12 His eyes are like a flame of fire, and on his head are many diadems, and he has a name written that no one knows but himself. 13 He is clothed in a robe dipped in blood, and the name by which he is called is The Word of God. 14 And the armies of heaven, arrayed in fine linen, white and pure, were following him on white horses. 15 From his mouth comes a sharp sword with which to strike down the nations, and he will rule them with a rod of iron. He will tread the winepress of the fury of the wrath of God the Almighty. 

 

7. Christ will judge the nations and separate the sheep (believers) from the goats (unbelievers).
Revelation 14:17–20: Then another angel came out of the temple in heaven, and he too had a sharp sickle. 18 And another angel came out from the altar, the angel who has authority over the fire, and he called with a loud voice to the one who had the sharp sickle, “Put in your sickle and gather the clusters from the vine of the earth, for its grapes are ripe.” 19 So the angel swung his sickle across the earth and gathered the grape harvest of the earth and threw it into the great winepress of the wrath of God. 20 And the winepress was trodden outside the city, and blood flowed from the winepress, as high as a horse’s bridle, for 1,600 stadia [200 miles or 300 kilometers].

 

8. The judgment of unbelievers will be severe.
Zechariah 14:12: And this shall be the plague with which the LORD will strike all the peoples that wage war against Jerusalem: their flesh will rot while they are still standing on their feet, their eyes will rot in their sockets, and their tongues will rot in their mouths.

 

Faith Lesson from the Location of the Chapel of the Ascension

 

1. Christ proved to be God in ascending in a glorified body back to heaven. Do we believe Jesus is God?

 

2. Every being that has ever been created will see Christ’s return in power and great glory.

 

3. Christ’s return conquers and flips all evil powers into submission to Him.

 

4. Christ coming will be in extreme power and great glory.

 

5. Christ will physically return to the Mount of Olives.

 

6. Believers and angels will return with Christ in power and great glory as well.

 

7. Christ will judge the nations and separate the sheep from the goats.

 

8. Are we living a devoted life to Christ and serving Him?

 

9. Are we living a life that is watchful and ready?

 

10. Will we be among those who come with Christ at His return or those whom Christ judges?

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