Road to Emmaus: From Discouraged to Delight
On the Road to Emmaus
13 “Now that same day two of them were going to a village called Emmaus, about seven miles[a] from Jerusalem. 14 They were talking with each other about everything that had happened. 15 As they talked and discussed these things with each other, Jesus himself came up and walked along with them; 16 but they were kept from recognizing him.” Luke 24:13-16
This week, we celebrated the Passover Week, Easter, and the resurrection day. We had family and friends over and ate a lot of chocolate. We rejoiced with our church family and took pictures to commemorate the moments.
For the followers of Jesus, resurrection day did not begin with celebration. That morning began in discouragement, disillusion, and depression. Jesus’ followers had expected that this year the Messiah, Jesus, would set up His kingdom and began to destroy the enemy, Roman rule. But that would not be God’s plan. All their hopes were pinned on one idea. Their lives joyous and excited one day to be in the depths of depression the next.
“Many are the plans in a person’s heart, but it is the LORD’s purpose that prevails.” (Proverbs 19:21 NIV)
Jesus made 10 appearances after that fateful resurrection day. First to Mary Magdalene (John 20:11-18), other women at the tomb (Matthew 28:8-10) and these two disciples, Cleopas and a friend, Luke 24:13-32. These appearances were important because they were the proof necessary for the followers of Jesus to learn “the rest of the story”.
We will look at some of these appearance over the next 7 weeks. Why seven weeks?
The lives of the Jewish nation revolve around the “seven feasts of Israel”. The first three, Passover, First Fruits and Pentecost are in the spring. Two of them were celebrated by Israel this past week and coincide with resurrection of Christ for Christians. The next feast on the Jewish calendar is Pentecost. The new beginning for Jesus followers! Jesus promised that they would receive power from on high.
For now though, the disciples had much to still learn! Today, I want us to take a walk with Cleopas, a disciple and his unnamed friend. These two friends are going home from Jerusalem where they have been defeated and disappointed. Their leader, Jesus, had been crucified. What were they to do now? What were they told by the gardener to do?
Matthew 28:7 “Then go quickly and tell his disciples, ‘He has been raised from the dead. He is going ahead of you into Galilee. You will see him there.’ Listen, I have told you!” 10 Then Jesus said to them, “Do not be afraid. Go and tell my brothers to go to Galilee. They will see me there.” ©NET
Did they obey? No, Cleopas and his friend were trying to reason out what had just happened. Don’t we do that too? We seldom have all the facts but we jump to conclusion to try to figure it out. Our minds were created to have resolutions, understanding in our reasoning. The two were so busy analyzing and justifying and plotting their next move that they didn’t see Jesus come and join them in the walk. Have you ever done that? I have been so busy with whatever is going on in my head that I miss time with my Lord? Jesus just interrupts them, by joining the conversation. “Hey, what are you guys talking about?” Cleopas and his friend ask Jesus, “Wow, where have you been?” I am sure Jesus must have grinned. While they told Jesus his own story, he must have been pleased, amused and also somewhat sad that they had so little faith or that they had such little knowledge of the Old Testament prophecies. His rebuke was from a broken heart, “How foolish you are, and how slow of heart to believe all that the prophets have spoken! 26 Did not the Christ have to suffer these things and then enter his glory?” 27 And beginning with Moses and all the Prophets, he explained to them what was said in all the Scriptures concerning himself.” Luke 25-27(NIV)
One more similarity to us today, so many find the Old Testament hard to understand and they avoid its treasures. But, the Old Testament has so many pictures of Jesus and the things to come! Often, we want to be spoon fed or only have just enough understanding of God’s Word to “get by” in our Christian walk.
Jesus doesn’t reveal himself to the two friends in the beginning. But he begins to unveil the scriptures beginning with Moses and the prophets. What a Bible study that must have been.
When they invite him in for supper and to stay the night, Jesus breaks the bread (remember Jesus is THE LIVING BREAD) and he reveals himself. Isn’t that just like Jesus? After He is recognized, Jesus disappears. Their comment afterward has always struck a deep chord in my spirit, “Were not our hearts burning within us while he talked with us on the road and opened the Scriptures to us?” Luke 24:32 (NIV)
I do hope you find that excitement and joy when you see Jesus working in your life or find those hidden pearls meant just for you in the scriptures. My little heart is full of joy when I see in God’s Word a revelation of Jesus, afresh and new.
There is so much we do not know or understand. We NEED the Holy Spirit to teach us! Aren’t you glad there was a day of Pentecost?!
Lessons from Emmaus:
- Jesus is always Journeying with us.
- Jesus is always Sympathizing with us.
- Jesus is always Expounding the Scriptures to us.
- Jesus is always Revealing Himself to us.
This video clip is longer than we usually post but if you have a little time(????), it is worth seeing a great presentation of the gospel.
The Road to Emmaus
Treading On to Pentecost…
Israel’s Holiday Feast will be Celebrated on May 31, 2017
Pentecost is 50 days from First Fruits (Resurrection day)