One Sunday morning, two Christ- followers were walking the seven-mile journey from Jerusalem to their home in Emmaus. Their minds were no doubt still reeling by the turn of events which ended with Jesus crucified.
Suddenly, Jesus joined them, but the passive verb (“were kept,” v. 16) suggests God prevented them from recognizing Him. This friendly “stranger” asked the men about their discussion. The Greek word syzentein suggested they were having a debate.
His question surprised them. How could He not know what had happened in Jerusalem? When Jesus probed further, ironically, they told Him what had happened (as if He did not know!). They recounted the week’s events—the trial and crucifixion. And they confessed their hope that Jesus would redeem Israel.
But that wasn’t all. They also told of the women, the empty tomb, and the angels, who said He was alive. Yet no one had seen Him. Jesus rebuked them, calling them foolish and slow of heart. They should have believed the prophets. “Did not the Messiah have to (dei) suffer?” (v. 26). That word again indicated God’s longstanding plan of deliverance. Their hope had not been dashed; rather, it had been satisfied.
Jesus stayed with them. At the table, He gave thanks and broke bread, reminiscent of the Lord’s Supper. And as they spent time with Jesus, their eyes were opened. Just as they recognized Him, He disappeared.
Their sorrow turned to joy, and they had to share the news immediately. Though it was late, they returned to Jerusalem and found the eleven. The women were reporting that Jesus had appeared to Simon. Then the two witnesses shared their story. The evidence was growing! Jesus was not dead. He had risen indeed!
>> The gospel is good news! Just as those who saw Jesus had to run and tell others, so we too have the joy of sharing about the miracle of the resurrection. We serve a living Savior! Let’s tell everyone we know about Him.
How can we keep from praising Your name? Lord, teach us as You taught Your disciples. Give us creativity, sensitivity, and discernment as we share the gospel with unbelievers. May the truth burn in our hearts, driving us to proclaim it!