Luke 24 :13-35 On The Road to Emmaus
Now on that same day two of them were going to a village called Emmaus, about seven miles from Jerusalem, and talking with each other about all these things that had happened. While they were talking and discussing, Jesus himself came near and went with them, but their eyes were kept from recognizing him. And he said to them, ‘What are you discussing with each other while you walk along?’ They stood still, looking sad. Then one of them, whose name was Cleopas, answered him, ‘Are you the only stranger in Jerusalem who does not know the things that have taken place there in these days?’ He asked them, ‘What things?’ 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.’ Then 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.
As they came near the village to which they were going, he walked ahead as if he were going on. But they urged him strongly, saying, ‘Stay with us, because it is almost evening and the day is now nearly over.’ So he went in to stay with them. 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?’ 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.
Meditation on Scripture
Take time to read through the passage On the road to Emmaus slowly a couple of times and then try to imagine your way through it, in whichever way seems best for you today. You may like to be Cleopas or the other disciple, or you may prefer to watch the story unfold as if you were watching it as a film.
Now ponder the following two verses from this passage:
Jesus 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 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)
They asked each other “Were not our hearts burning within us while he talked with us on the road and opened the Scriptures to us?” (Luke 24:32)
While the two disciples were unaware that their companion on the road was none other than Jesus, he commented on how ‘slow of heart’ they were and yet after they recognised him as he broke bread with them, before disappearing from their sight, they acknowledged that their hearts had ‘burned within us’ while he spoke to them on the road to Emmaus. Can you resonate with their experience? How have you found the word of God stirring your heart as you have travelled on, on your journey of faith?
Since Jesus was with God from the beginning, (John 1:1) he was well placed to explain everything to the two disciples. Peter in his first letter (1 Peter 3; 15) writes, ‘Always be prepared to give an answer to everyone who asks you to give a reason for the hope you have’. Are you ready to speak up and explain the hope you have?
You may like to spend some time now talking to Jesus about this. Tell him how you feel about speaking to people about your faith. Ask him to explain anything you are uncertain about. Listen to what God may be saying to you.
Now thank God for those that spoke to you about their faith, and those who were instrumental in bringing you to faith. Finally pray about who you can share your faith with in the coming months.
Lord Jesus, your rising from the tomb heralds the dawning of life-eternal, as the dawning of this day holds the possibilities of life anew. Open our eyes to the signs of your resurrection and confirm in our hearts the power of your amazing love, that we may with confidence sing, “Alleluia.” Amen.