Summary: This is about Jesus’ walk with the two on the Road to Emmaus.
We don’t always get all the facts right away when something momentous happens. The day of 9/11 was filled with confusion and speculation. More confusing the closer to NYC and WTC.
Recap Passion Week: triumphal entry, Last Supper, prayer, arrest, trial, execution, and burial. Now there were rumors of a resurrection. Late in the day on that first confusing Easter.
Read Luke 24:13-35.
These two were in a funk about what had happened.
DESPAIR & CONFUSION
The whirlwind week left these two in a state of despair and confusion. They were casually discussing the events when suddenly a stranger comes up beside them and says, “What ya’ll talking about?”
They looked sad and one said, “What planet are you from?” How could this fellow not know what had gone down.
Their despair came from the fact that Jesus didn’t fulfill the aspirations they had. For centuries there had been rising within the Jewish community a sense that a military/political messiah would come and kick out Rome and reestablish Israel as a dominant world power. How could their leader wind up getting himself executed?
Now with all that had happened they were confused. Some of the women they knew had visited the cemetery that morning, and they said the tomb was empty. Women’s testimony wasn’t considered reliable in the 1st century. That’s makes the use of women as the first witnesses to the resurrection all the more amazing.
Sometimes, we try to box Jesus in as well. These two and others tried to box Jesus into their preconceived notion. Do we do that? Do we box Jesus into our preconceived notions?
We have preconceived notions about how church is supposed to happen. When we box in Jesus it winds up in despair because he doesn’t meet our expectations. We then end up in confusion.
DEFINITION & COMFORT
After they get all their despair and confusion out of their system, Jesus says, “You just don’t get it.” To call them “foolish” isn’t an insult. He is simply saying that they don’t understand or comprehend. Jesus then carefully defines for them from Moses and the Prophets what the Messiah would be.
A lot of our despair and confusion comes from an inadequate definition. These two were aware of the scriptures, but they had interpreted them through preconceived notions. They had read things into the scripture. They didn’t have an adequate understanding.
When we get an adequate definition we are comforted. Their heart were burning, but they weren’t sure why. When the scriptures are opened our hearts will burn. John Wesley relates an account in his life, when he was at a meeting of believers when he felt his heart “strangely warmed.”
Even though they didn’t get it all, they received comfort. The pieces of the puzzle began to fall into place, although the picture wasn’t yet clear.
Our definition of church is shaded by our modern mind. I’ve been on a journey about what church truly is.
DINNER & COMMUNION
Jesus wasn’t being deceptive when he acted as though he would continue on. He wasn’t going to force his way in. He doesn’t force his way into our lives either. He offers us the free will to invite him into our lives. Jesus said, “Behold, I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears my voice and opens the door, I will come in to him and eat with him, and he with me.” (Rev. 3:20) He won’t kick in the door.