In the Orthodox Church, the 40th day after Easter is celebrated as the day marking Christ’s ascension into heaven. The emphasis of this commemoration is our assurance not only that Jesus is truly the Son of God, but that he has not left his disciples without hope.
In the Gospel reading for this Great Feast, the Scriptures record:
“Now as they said these things, Jesus Himself stood in the midst of them, and said to them, ‘Peace to you. . . . Behold, I send the Promise of My Father upon you; but tarry in the city of Jerusalem until you are endued with power from on high.’
And He led them out as far as Bethany, and He lifted up His hands and blessed them. Now it came to pass, while He blessed them, that He was parted from them and carried up into heaven. And they worshiped Him, and returned to Jerusalem with great joy, and were continually in the temple praising and blessing God.” —Luke 24:36–53 (NKJV)