Summary: This is the first lesson of this series based on Luke 4:16-21 and using Luke 24:13-35 as the main text.
THE UNEXPECTED JESUS
"Proclaiming the Good News to the Poor"
INTRODUCTION: Let me tell you a little story about a man named Edgar Degas. During the 19th
Century he was a well-known French painter. He had been schooled at the finest art studios in
Paris, and his work was exceptionally moving, independent in style and treasured through the
land. But, by the age of seventy, he was nearly blind and he spent his days wandering the
streets of Paris following funeral processions. His talent had brought him great riches, yet he
lived as if he were burdened with debt, and he dressed so shabbily that he was often mistaken
for a vagrant. He had painted brilliantly, but now had no future. He had become famous, but now
be couldn’t enjoy it. He could buy whatever he pleased, but now he desired nothing. While still
living he had lost the capacity to enjoy life. On the road from Jerusalem to Emmaus, Jesus met
up with two men who found themselves in a very similar situation. READ TEXT Jesus had come into
this world to preach the gospel to the poor. These two men were poor - spiritually bankrupt,
they needed to hear the Good News and that is where Jesus went to work.
I. THE POOR IN SPIRIT
A. Take another look at these two men. They had come to the Jerusalem for the Great Feast, the
Feast of the Passover. They had expected to be joyful with the Holy City filled with faithful
followers in Holy Celebration, but instead they found sorrow.
1. We don’t know where or when they met Jesus, but we do know they did, and in meeting Him they
found something wonderful and someone who impacted their lives as no one else had.
2. He was a great teacher, a miracle worker, an inspirer of men. He had touched their hearts
with a gentle grace. He had stirred their spirits with a powerful message. He had changed their
lives in so many ways, that they had become followers, believers, dreamers, until that Friday.
3. This great prophet, they had watched as He was nailed to a cross, stood with the others as He
struggled for life, and at the end, beheld His death. And with His death went their hopes, their
dreams, their new faith and their renewed spirit.
4. So, they left Jerusalem two days later, broken and bankrupt in spirit. They had believed that
He was the One, that life would be changed for the better, but now He was dead and His body was
missing. They were miserable, hopeless and poor in spirit.
B. How many times do we find ourselves walking in their shoes? When all our dreams go up in
smoke, when God seems too far away, when it seems our only option is to go back to what we know,
to what is common, to what is comfortable. When that happens, we then walk the path they walked.
C. In Isaiah 57:15 God said, "I dwell in the high and holy place with him who has a broken and
poor spirit. I will revive the poor in spirit, and the brokenhearted." And that is what Jesus
went to do on the road to Emmaus. To proclaim...
II. THE GOOD NEWS TO THE POOR
A. We need to see that Jesus did not wait for them to come to Him. Jesus met them where they
were. He went to them in their greatest time of need and in their greatest time of spiritual
1. They were out of options. Their spirit was broken, all their hopes were gone, their dreams
shattered, no reason to be joyful or to be rich in spirit, so they headed back to Emmaus, back
2. Yet, while they were trudging along that seven-mile long path, by the way which must have
been the longest walk of their life, a man appeared and began to walk with them. Jesus has
just done the unexpected. No one in their right mind would have expected Him to pop up on a
dark dusty road to help two lonely men, but He did.
3. He showed interest in their sorrow, so they opened their hearts to Him. They told Him of how
they had believed, hoped and dreamed with a prophet from Nazareth. They spoke of how he had
touched their hearts and changed their lives, but it was all over. He was dead and gone.
4. This is when Jesus touched them again and this time with an even greater message than before.
He opened their hearts to the Scriptures that told of His coming and His mission. He made their
hearts ring again with excitement and the spirits soar with grace. And, that is when they saw