Summary: Jesus provides ultimate hope.
"THE WONDER OF HIS RESURRECTION"
LUKE 24: 13-35
In the movie, "City Slickers," comedian Billy Crystal plays a bored baby boomer who sells advertising. One day he is invited to visit his son’s school to tell the children about his job. But as he speaks he can see the kids are confused about his being in advertising. What he doesn’t know is that his son has told his classmates that he is a submarine captain and what the children don’t know is that he is going through a mid-life crisis. Suddenly he breaks into a dead-pan monologue about life.
"Value this life while you can kids. Because this is the time in your life when you still have choices and it goes by fast. When you are a teen-ager you think you can do anything and you do. Your 20’s are a blur. In the 30’s, you raise your family, you make a little money and you say to yourself, "What happened to my 20’s?" In your 40’s, you grow a little pot-belly, you grow another chin, the music becomes a little too loud. One of your old girl friends from high school becomes a grandmother. In your 50’s you have minor surgery. You call it a procedure, but it’s surgery. In your 60’s you have major surgery. The music is still too loud but it doesn’t matter because you can’t hear it any more. In your 70’s, you and the wife retire to Ft. Lauderdale. You start eating dinner around 2:00 in the afternoon. You have lunch around 10 and breakfast the night before. You spend most of your time wandering around the mall looking for the ultimate soft yogurt. In your 80’s you will have a major stroke. You end up babbling with some Jamaican nurse that your wife can’t stand, but whom you call "Momma." Are there any questions?"
People are hearing the message that this life is all there is. They are getting that sense from the media, from education, from advertising. And our culture has so ignored the spiritual, that this life has become the ultimate focus and many are discovering that what this life offers is not enough, they’re missing something. The missing ingredient? Hope. So many people have nothing to hope for. Maybe that is why four teens recently made a suicide pact and three of them successfully killed themselves. The one survivor was asked why she did it and she replied, "Why not? What is there to live for?" But the Bible says in Rom. 8:24- "It is by hope you have been saved." Dante said, "Life without hope, is hell." Alfred Luckup said, “When there is no hope for the future, there is no power in the present."
Well, today I want you to see two men that were on the road to a village called Emmaus, who were out of hope too. Vs: 21 tells us that they had hoped that Jesus was the Son of God. But their hope had been crucified and buried in a tomb. And now they are disconsolate, depressed, their conversation is negative, their faces are downcast. But then Jesus suddenly joins them. They don’t know it’s Him, vs:16- "..they were kept from recognizing Him." But the next several minutes with the resurrected Christ completely transforms their attitude toward life & gives them power for the future. I want you to see three steps that enabled these men to go from being downcast, to seeing the wonder of the hope that Jesus provides. And it is my deepest desire that you’ll see that Jesus still offers the same kind of hope right now.
I. JESUS OPENED UP THE SCRIPTURES:
The first step that restored hope was that Jesus opened the Scripture. Vs:25- "How foolish you are, and how slow of heart to believe all that the prophets have spoken!" Jesus reprimanded them for not knowing what the Bible said about the Son of God. So Jesus taught a lesson as He walked and reasoned with them from Scripture. Vs:27- "And beginning with Moses and all the prophets He explained to them what was said in all the Scriptures concerning Himself." I can imagine Him saying, "Haven’t you read Isa.53 that said the Messiah (God’s anointed one) would be led to the slaughter and that He would be wounded for our sins? Haven’t you read what David wrote in Psa. 22 where he said his hands and feet would be pierced?" "Or how about Psa. 16 where it says that the Son of God’s body would not be abandoned in the grave or see any corruption." Now Jesus could of shown Himself to them immediately but this way Jesus revealed to them their need to have a solid, objective authority for their hope. Their hope could not just be based on emotion or feelings, some subjective experience, and neither can ours.