The book presents the Ascension as public truth, examining questions such as when did Jesus ascend - and how, where did he go, with what kind of body and into what kind of space? It discusses the nature of Jesus' victory, how it has been challenged, how it has been understood at different times in history, and how it relates to his second coming. The author examines the relevance of the doctrine for personal spiritual life: our union with Christ, Jesus praying for us, worship, and our own prayers. He goes on to consider living in God's kingdom, the tension between waiting for the kingdom and working for it now, suffering, humanisation, and the church and the world today. The book approaches the Ascension thematically, making it a useful teaching tool. Its themes arise from the categories in which the Church Fathers employed the doctrine. Gerrit Dawson shows the Ascension to be a vital key to understanding in a fresh way the person and work of Christ, union with Christ, the mission of the church in the world, Christian identity and spiritual theology. A unique feature of the book is the way Dawson combines a full presentation of Nicene trinitarian Christology with its application to the practicalities of Christian life today. Praise for Jesus Ascended: 'Gerrit Dawson harkens back to an older vision of ministry, that of the pastor-theologian. This vision is remarkably illustrated in this beautifully written book that can properly lay claim to being practical theology.
This is an extremely lucid and readable book on a central Christian doctrine that is as profoundly important theologically as it has been quietly sidelined both by preachers and theologians! With admirable openness and straightforwardness, the author articulates the reasons why discussion of the ascension is so often avoided and addresses these with historically informed and, indeed, deep-thinking theological insight. This allows him to go on to demonstrate why the doctrine, rather than being shied away from, stands to be embraced as definitive of the Good News from which the Christian faith lives. This is a truly outstanding book for students, pastors and thinking Christians alike. I could not recommend it more enthusiastically! Alan Torrance