Summary: As we walk the road of life, there will be times when our heart is heavy and our hope will seem to have vanished.
Text: “Now that same day two of them were going to a village called Emmaus, about seven miles from Jerusalem” (Luke 24:13).
The same day referred to in this Scripture is the day of the Resurrection. The week prior to the Resurrection was filled with excitement because of the Passover celebration. People came to Jerusalem from many miles away to celebrate Passover, also known as The Feast of Unleavened Bread.
This celebration was an annual event and considered most important, both historically and religiously. This celebration was in remembrance of the deliverance of the Jews from captivity in Egypt and the organization of Israel as a nation by the redeeming power of Almighty God.
These two men walking along the road were followers of Jesus who lived in Emmaus. They traveled to Jerusalem to celebrate Passover. Passover was now over, the Crucifixion had taken place, Jesus died on the Cross was buried, and then the unexpected happened.
On the first day of the week, in the early morning hours, some women who had come with Jesus from Galilee went to the tomb with spices to prepare His body. To their surprise, “They found the stone rolled away from the tomb, but when they entered, they did not find the body of the Lord Jesus”
“When they came back from the tomb, they told all these things to the Eleven and to all the others” (Luke 24:9). This was a difficult concept for people to accept even though Jesus talked about it.
Scripture tells us, “From that time on Jesus began to explain to his disciples that he must go to Jerusalem and suffer many things at the hands of the elders, chief priests and teachers of the law, and that he must be killed and on the third day be raised to life” (Matthew 16:21).
Jesus was announcing the coming of the kingdom of heaven. As you recall, when He began His ministry he said, “Repent, for the kingdom of heaven is near” (Matthew 4:17). Those of us who have accepted Jesus as our personal Lord and Savior are very near the kingdom of heaven because it is in our heart.
The kingdom of heaven entered the realm of mankind when God appeared upon the earth in the Person of Jesus. Although we have the kingdom of heaven within us, we won’t fully realize it until Jesus comes to earth again and rids the world of all evil.
I am trying to get you to see that the treatment Jesus received and the death He suffered should not have been a surprise to the people. Isaiah 53 talks about the suffering servant. “He was despised and rejected by men, a man of sorrows, and familiar with suffering” (Isaiah 53:3).
This is the Messiah the prophet Isaiah was talking about. Isaiah tells us that the Messiah was despised, afflicted, crushed, pierced, wounded, oppressed, afflicted, and led away like a sheep to be slaughtered (Isaiah 53).
The treatment Jesus received, the pain and agony He suffered and the Crucifixion should not have been a surprise too the people because it was written in the Old Testament. Even knowing all this, people were still surprised and dumfounded because they did not understand or did not believe.
It was the third day after the Crucifixion and Passover was not history. People were preparing to go back to their homes. Our Scripture reading talks about two men who were on their way back to their home in Emmaus. Emmaus is about seven miles from Jerusalem. These people as well as many other people were full of hope but have now lost their hope. They knew about Jesus and many accepted Him as the prophet who was mighty in power and word. He was the One who was going to redeem Israel.
All the events of the week, the arrest, the Crucifixion and the death took all the wind out of their sails. They were disappointed, let down, sad and empty hearted. The loss of Jesus left them without hope. They were on their way home to try to figure out the next move in their life.
They talked as they walked together re-hashing what had taken place. They did not realize that what had transpired was the greatest positive event in human history. They were too engrossed in their own problems and their own disappointments to see the light at the end of the tunnel.
When you think about it that is the way you and I think. When events in life do not unfold the way we would like, we tend to become disappointed and feel sorry for ourselves. I perceive this is what these two men were doing. “They were talking about everything that had happened” (Luke 24:14).
As far as they could see or as far as they could understand, there was nothing good in what had taken place. The celebration of Passover that was so meaningful in the life of the Jewish people ended in the crucifixion of the Prophet from Nazareth.