Two men, who were present with the other disciples when the women reported the empty tomb, decided to walk to Emmaus, a seven-mile walk from Jerusalem.
As they walked, they talked about what had happened to Jesus. Jesus joined the two, but they were unable to recognize him.
Jesus asked them, “What are you discussing with each other while you walk along?” (Luke 24.17).
Filled with grief, they stopped and Cleopas said, “Are you the only stranger in Jerusalem who does not know the things that have taken place there in these days?” (Luke 24.18).
Jesus asked them what they were talking about and they replied, “The things about Jesus of Nazareth, who was a prophet mighty in deed and word before God and all the people,
“And how our chief priests and leaders handed him over to be condemned to death and crucified him.
“But we had hoped that he was the one to redeem Israel. Yes, and besides all this, it is now the third day since these things took place.
“Moreover, some women of our group astounded us. They were at the tomb early this morning,
“And when they did not find his body there, they came back and told us that they had indeed seen a vision of angels who said that he was alive.
“Some of those who were with us went to the tomb and found it just as the women had said; but they did not see him” (Luke 24.19-24).
They believed that Jesus was a powerful prophet and they had hoped that he was the Messiah. No one in Israel believed that the Messiah would suffer and die. Thus, their messianic hopes were dashed into bitter disappointment.
They reported to Jesus the experience of the disciples and how they had not believed the testimony of the women earlier in the day.
There is a profound truth that surrounds the resurrection appearances of Jesus. Insight into the activity of God can only come through divine revelation.
The good news for our blind-to-the-gospel friends is that we can pray for them and God will reveal himself to them.
Millions of people have found forgiveness, new life, and a relationship with God because God revealed himself to them.
The men didn’t seem to take offense when Jesus chided them for their lack of faith.
He said to them, “Oh, how foolish you are, and how slow of heart to believe all that the prophets have declared!
“Was it not necessary that the Messiah should suffer these things and then enter into his glory?”
Then beginning with Moses and all the prophets, he interpreted to them the things about himself in all the scriptures (Luke 24.25-27).
Their firmly held beliefs would not let them see and believe passages from the prophets that spoke of a suffering Messiah. Isaiah 53 is prominent among the Old Testament scriptures that describe the suffering of God’s Anointed One.
Just like the men on the way to Emmaus, Jesus is willing to interpret the Bible to us. John wrote about God’s willingness to teach us.
“As for you, the anointing that you received from him abides in you, and so you do not need anyone to teach you.
But as his anointing teaches you about all things, and is true and is not a lie, and just as it has taught you, abide in him” (1 John 2.27).
The “anointing” is John’s way of referring to the Holy Spirit. Jesus, through the activity of the Holy Spirit, is present when we read the Bible. He will open our minds to understand the Scriptures.
Since it was late when they arrived in Emmaus, they invited Jesus to say with them. Jesus was their guest, but when the bread arrived, he assumed the role of host.
— Luke 24.30-32 – When he was at the table with them, he took bread, blessed and broke it, and gave it to them.
Then their eyes were opened, and they recognized him; and he vanished from their sight.
They said to each other, “Were not our hearts burning within us while he was talking to us on the road, while he was opening the scriptures to us?”
Rudy Ross and I will talk in detail about the breaking of bread in tomorrow’s video.
Notice how they were only able to recognize Jesus when “their eyes were opened.” We are only able to see Jesus for who he is through God’s gracious revelation of his being.
These two men walked seven miles to Emmaus, but the joy of encountering the resurrected Jesus allowed them to run back to Jerusalem.
— Luke 24.33-35 – That same hour they got up and returned to Jerusalem; and they found the eleven and their companions gathered together.
They were saying, “The Lord has risen indeed, and he has appeared to Simon!”
Then they told what had happened on the road, and how he had been made known to them in the breaking of the bread.
Rudy Ross and I will cover more of this episode in tomorrow’s YouTube video on the Bob Spradling channel.
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