RECAP Acts: Where in the World Is Jesus?


From now until the end of the month we will be re-releasing highlights from our Wake-Up Call Acts journey together. Join us on December 1 when we begin our new series celebrating Advent—Protagonist by Matt and Josh LeRoy. 


Wake up, sleeper, rise from the dead, and Christ will shine on you. 

Jesus, I belong to you.

I lift up my heart to you.
I set my mind on you.
I fix my eyes on you.
I offer my body to you as a living sacrifice.

Jesus, we belong to you. 

Praying in the name of the Father, and the Son, and the Holy Spirit, amen. 

Acts 1:12–17 (NIV)

Then the apostles returned to Jerusalem from the hill called the Mount of Olives, a Sabbath day’s walk from the city. When they arrived, they went upstairs to the room where they were staying. Those present were Peter, John, James and Andrew; Philip and Thomas, Bartholomew and Matthew; James son of Alphaeus and Simon the Zealot, and Judas son of James. They all joined together constantly in prayer, along with the women and Mary the mother of Jesus, and with his brothers.

In those days Peter stood up among the believers (a group numbering about a hundred and twenty) and said, “Brothers and sisters, the Scripture had to be fulfilled in which the Holy Spirit spoke long ago through David concerning Judas, who served as guide for those who arrested Jesus. He was one of our number and shared in our ministry.”


If you’ve been here any length of time you know this train doesn’t stop for long. (You also know sometimes we go too deep for a devotion.) There are many days when we have to run the instant replay from the day before to deal with what we didn’t get to see and say. Today is already one of those days. I’m talking about this:

After he said this, he was taken up before their very eyes, and a cloud hid him from their sight.

It could be the most consequential verse of Scripture in the whole Bible. Read it again. 

Where in the world is Jesus? For most of my Bible reading life, I missed this. As a result, I have mostly thought of Jesus as being an invisible being somewhere other than here; that this ascension business was a mystical plot device to get Jesus back to where he was before he came; that when he disappeared into the cloud God kind of poofed him back into an invisible presence in Heaven where he would live happily ever after with all our departed loved ones.

That’s not at all what the text says. 

After he said this, he was taken up before their very eyes, and a cloud hid him from their sight.

Have you ever thought about the difference between something invisible and something you can’t see? Well, for starters, to say something (or someone) is invisible is to say something about that thing or person. You are saying it is not seeable. To say something is unseen is to say something about your own inability to see—that you simply can’t see the person or thing from your present vantage point. 

After he said this, he was taken up before their very eyes, and a cloud hid him from their sight.

It is impossible to know how much our mind, consciousness, outlook, and point of view have been formed by the scientific worldview—even beyond our awareness. In saying this, I am not knocking science. However, our native scientific worldview lacks the capacity to even process a human being levitating into the sky and being hidden from sight by a cloud. Science has a file for this labeled mythology. We actually need a much larger framework than science can provide. Let’s call it biblical cosmology. It is supremely ironic how science is routinely deployed to quash biblical cosmology, whilst standing on its shoulders, but I digress. 

Biblical cosmology finds its origins in the first chapter and first verse of the Bible. 

In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth.

Again, for most of my Bible reading life, I have only really considered creation to be the Earth. I never really noticed the bit about God creating the heavens. In the beginning, the heavens and the earth were of a seamless reality—God dwelling in and among his creation and notably with his male and female image bearers. The porous seam between the heavens and the earth was shattered by sin and death the consequent fall from grace. In the death and resurrection of Jesus, we behold the cosmology of the cross, mending (not bridging, mind you) the divide between the heavens and the earth. The ascension reveals Jesus, the risen Lord of heaven and earth, taking his seat of authority in the heavens—in bodily form; totally visible and yet unseen. 

Biblical cosmology posits what the scientific worldview—for lack of categories—cannot comprehend: A physically embodied Jewish carpenter sits in the heavens at the right hand of God. A fully divine human being is ruling the heavens and the earth.

This has massive implications for everything. For starters, it means Jesus was, is, and remains a concretely real human person right here and right now. He is not a spiritual being somewhere far away. This is why Luke is careful to tell us he gave his disciples “many convincing proofs that he was alive,” and that he ate with his disciples following his resurrection.

Secondly, it means the heavens are neither somewhere over the rainbow nor way up yonder. Think through rather than up—just through the thin veil of visible reality. Otherwise, why do we think Jesus spent so much of his time talking about the kingdom of heaven and praying chiefly for the kingdom to come “on earth as it is in heaven.”  All of this has enormous implications for understanding what prayer is and is not and how the Holy Spirit works through prayer, as well as the nature of healing and miracles and the redemptive character of suffering love, and, and, and . . . 

In the ascension, Jesus moved from the earth to the heavens. Here’s the chief implication of the ascension—because Jesus went from here to there, he can now go from there to everywhere. His primary means of going is by indwelling his witnesses (aka you and me) with his presence via the Holy Spirit. 

These fourteen weeks together through the first fourteen chapters of the Acts of the Apostles will reveal to us what it looks like when that happens. 


Lord Jesus, I am your witness. 

I receive your righteousness and release my sin. 
I receive your wholeness and release my brokenness.
I receive your fullness and release my emptiness.
I receive your creativity and release my chaos.
I receive your healing and release my sickness. 
I receive your joy and release my despair.
I receive your rest and release my striving. 

Come Holy Spirit transform my heart, mind, soul, and strength so that my consecration becomes your demonstration; that our lives become your sanctuary. For the glory of God our Father, amen. 


Are you grasping the need for a biblical cosmology to wrap around our scientific mentality? 


Many who read the Wake-Up Call still don’t know that the gold standard experience of it is the podcast version. Listen to how this father of three put it. “I listen to the Wake-Up Call with my three children on the way to school each morning. It’s like a little gathering of worship where we can all participate. My kids especially love to sing along with J. D. on the songs they know. He adds a lot of color to the audio version.” You can listen by clicking on the little button at the top of each day’s email or on the Apple Podcasts app. Search for Seedbed and you will find it. 

Today we will sing a song that truly carries a biblical cosmology. It’s one of your favorites. “How Great Thou Art” is hymn 32 in our Seedbed hymnal, Our Great Redeemer’s Praise.

For the Awakening,
J. D. Walt

P. S. Would You Share a Word Back?

Please take two minutes to give us some feedback on the recent Wake-Up Call series. I would greatly appreciate it. LINK HERE.

Subscribe to get this in your inbox daily and please share this link with friends.

Share today's Wake-Up Call!


WHAT IS THIS? Wake-Up Call is a daily encouragement to shake off the slumber of our busy lives and turn our eyes toward Jesus. Each morning our community gathers around a Scripture, a reflection, a prayer, and a few short questions, inviting us to reorient our lives around the love of Jesus that transforms our hearts, homes, churches, and cities.

Comments and Discussion

10 Responses

  1. This post actually confirms what God had already revealed to me for a while. That heaven is NOT “ in a galaxy far away”, but rather all around us, hidden by a veil that came about when our original parents were spiritually blinded by the Fall. This was first revealed to me when reading about how Elisha prayed that his servant’s eyes could be opened to see through that spiritual veil and as a result, he was able to view that the surrounding hills full of horses and chariots of fire all around them. (2 Kings 6:17) And then again when Stephen, as he was testifying at his trial before the Sanhedrin, was able to see Jesus Christ standing at the right hand of God.(Acts 7:54-56) We even have a contemporary praise hymn about that- “We Are Standing On Holy Ground”.

    1. I’m with you. I add one other reference: Paul’s “glass darkly” in 1 Cor 13. Especially in the context of the Love chapter, it seems to define the boundary between the Kingdom of God and the kingdom of earth.

  2. Where is Jesus?

    Because the risen Jesus
    Is physically unseen,
    That doesn’t mean
    That you should be unaware
    That He is everywhere.
    How wonderful it is
    To wake up and find
    That Jesus hasn’t
    Left us behind
    To deal with life
    Through our own mind.
    Now is the time
    To be fully aligned
    And surrendered to
    “Christ in you
    The hope of glory!”

  3. Colossians 1:15-17
    The Son is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn over all creation. For in him all things were created: things in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or powers or rulers or authorities; all things have been created through him and for him. He is before all things, and in him all things hold together.

    Jesus isn’t up there; he is through there, over there, in here, everywhere. He is in all creation; He is creation. As His children, we know this truth, yet we struggle to live like that which we know. The challenge is that the evil one knows this also, and he strives and tries to thwart us from being abundantly free in Christ.

    Job 1:9-11
    Then Satan answered the Lord and said, “Does Job fear God for no reason? Have you not put a hedge around him and his house and all he has, on every side? You have blessed the work of his hands, and his possessions have increased in the land. But stretch out your hand and touch all that he has, and he will curse you to your face.”

    Satan is our accuser. Christ whispers the truth in God’s ear.

    Romans 8:34
    Who is to condemn? Christ Jesus is the one who died—more than that, who was raised—who is at the right hand of God, who indeed is interceding for us.

    May satan’s accusations never match Jesus’ truth.

    Staying 💪’ n Christ
    Ephesians 6:10
    Finally, be strong in the Lord and in the strength of his might.

  4. Day in and day out, J.D. you provide so much for us to consider. Similarly, day in and day out, Doc, Bob, and Steve provide such thoughtful perspectives too – each based on their unique journeys and also in their own voices. As a disciple of Jesus who also happens to hold a PhD in chemistry, I also think I have think I have a worthwhile contribution to make to the conversation today. I was challenged by today’s wake up call but not for the reason you might think. In essence, for years I have heard the push back from both Christians and scientists about the assumed divide between faith and science. While I appreciate the thoughtfulness you showed in addressing what science can and cannot address regarding the unseen Kingdom, I write to say as a scientist that I do not view science as an obstacle to faith or even a contradiction but rather as a true complement. To me and so many other scientists like me, scientific investigation is another way we can learn from our Creator, and I believe we are all on the same team provided we do not give into the temptation of putting up fences and succumbing to the sin of self-righteousness. In these polarized times, I hope to continue to speak against this false dichotomy. Together, yes together, we will win this game!

    In Christ,

    1. Amen, Bob.
      Science proves the simple complexity of creation. Science doesn’t create from nothing; science finds and uses the elements God has already placed into existence.
      Staying 💪’Chrst
      Ephesians 6:10
      Finally, be strong in the Lord and in the strength of his might.

    2. To Doctor Bob:
      As someone with no credentials at all aside from being a beloved daughter of God/Jesus, I agree with your perspective. Years ago, (probably at least 35) I participated in Kay Arthur’s Precept study of the book of Genesis and was convinced at that time that the conflict between Christianity & science is of man’s own making….his lack of understanding and his inflated view of his own intelligence has often led him astray. My heart this morning echoes the concepts in J.D.’s prayer. Transform me,Lord, into who you created me to be. I believe. Help Thou my unbelief.
      Thank you for sharing your views.

  5. This morning’s recap about the mere veil that separates our physical reality from the spiritual is a reminder of the truth revealed when Jesus spoke, “The time has come,” he said, The kingdom of God has come near. Repent and believe the God news!” ( Mark 1:15 ) By faith, we now have access through the shed blood of Jesus.

  6. JD asks: “Where in the world is Jesus?” I woke up this morning (11/21/23) with these thoughts in my heart that show how Jesus is the living, present King who is calling us to personally, intimately, and corporately align with the kingdom of God.

    Continually use the keys to the kingdom of God!

    Jesus gave His followers the keys to God’s kingdom. He said that we can use them to lock (to bind) and to unlock (to loose), but what are we supposed to lock and to unlock? We need to lock and shut down every thought, feeling, desire, action, word, belief, or opinion that hinders God’s will and to unlock and release every one that aligns with God’s will.

    To know God’s will we need to always be ready and willing to hear and obey what God’s Spirit is saying in and through our conscience. We need to daily read the Scriptures with an open heart and to ponder and obey them throughout the day. And we need to connect heart-to-heart with other Christ-followers who are connected heart-to-heart with, listening to, and obeying the risen King Jesus.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *