The Ascension and Exaltation of Christ

This past Thursday (5/17/2012) was the celebration of the Ascension of Jesus Christ by the Western church, although many churches will celebrate it this Sunday. As I have looked at resources for the Ascension, I realized that there have been few books in English on this topic. There are a few current books that are essential:

Gerrit Scott Dawson, Jesus Ascended: The Meaning of Christ’s Continuing Incarnation

Douglas B. Farrow, Ascension Theology and Ascension and Ecclesia: On the Significance of the Doctrine of the Ascension for Ecclesiology and Christian Cosmology

There are a few older works that should be consulted if available:

  • William Milligan, The Ascension and Heavenly Priesthood of our Lord (1891)
  • H. B. Swete, The Ascended Christ: A Study in the Earliest Christian Teaching (1922)
  • Arthur J. Tait, An Introduction to the History of Doctrine The Heavenly Session of Our Lord: a Study in the History of Doctrine (1912)
  • J. G. Davies, He Ascended into Heaven (1958)

And then two newels works that are out of print (written for a broader audience):

  • Brian K. Donne, Christ Ascended: The Significance of the Ascension in the New Testament (1983)
  • Peter Toon, The Ascension of Our Lord (1984)
  • Derek Thomas, Take Up to Heaven (1996)
  • Derek Prime, The Ascension: The Shout of a King (1999)

There is often a section on the ascension in books on the resurrection, such as Thomas F. Torrance, Space, Time and Resurrection (1976), Murray J. Harris, Raised Immortal (1983), and N. T. Wright, Surprised by Hope (2008).