After his death, he presented himself alive to them in many different settings over a period of forty days. In face-to-face meetings, he talked to them about things concerning the kingdom of God.
As they met and ate meals together, he told them that they were on no account to leave Jerusalem but "must wait for what the Father promised: the promise you heard from me.
John baptized in water; you will be baptized in the Holy Spirit. And soon."
When they were together for the last time they asked, "Master, are you going to restore the kingdom to Israel now? Is this the time?"
He told them, "You don't get to know the time. Timing is the Father's business.
What you'll get is the Holy Spirit. And when the Holy Spirit comes on you, you will be able to be my witnesses in Jerusalem, all over Judea and Samaria, even to the ends of the world."
These were his last words. As they watched, he was taken up and disappeared in a cloud.
They stood there, staring into the empty sky. Suddenly two men appeared - in white robes!
They said, "You Galileans! - why do you just stand here looking up at an empty sky? This very Jesus who was taken up from among you to heaven will come as certainly - and mysteriously - as he left."
Published by permission. Originally published by NavPress in English as THE MESSAGE: The Bible in Contemporary Language copyright 2002 by Eugene Peterson. All rights reserved. (The Message Bible Online)