On the Road to Emmaus

An Easter Celebration Devotion

April 18, 2023

“On the Road to Emmaus”

Jesus appears to two of His disciples

Luke 24:13-35

Over the last several years, I’ve talked about Street Eats in several of my devotions. Without being overly repetitious, Street Eats was a program I developed with my student at my last church before I retired. First, the youth and I would bag bottled water, canned food, and snacks for needy people. Then congregation members would hand out the bags to needy people they saw and met on street corners.

The way I would describe why we did this program was like this,

“Street Eats is a way we can reach out to needy people we meet on the highway of life.
On every road, Street, and highway Jesus traveled, He helped people in need.

In the story of Jesus appearing to and walking with two disciples on the Road to Emmaus, Jesus helps them to understand the events that had occurred over the last few days.

*****************************The Point*************************

Let’s take a few minutes and read the passages for Luke that tell us what occurred on The Road to Emmaus.

“Now, that same day, two of them were going to a village called Emmaus, about seven miles from Jerusalem. They were talking with each other about everything that had happened. As they talked and discussed these things with each other, Jesus himself came up and walked along with them; but they were kept from recognizing him.

He asked them, “What are you discussing together as you walk along?”

They stood still, their faces downcast. One of them, named Cleopas, asked him, “Are you the only one visiting Jerusalem who does not know the things that have happened there in these days?”

 “What things?” he asked.

“About Jesus of Nazareth,” they replied. “He was a prophet, powerful in word and deed before God and all the people. The chief priests and our rulers handed him over to be sentenced to death, and they crucified him; but we had hoped that he was the one who was going to redeem Israel. And what is more, it is the third day since all this took place. In addition, some of our women amazed us. They went to the tomb early this morning but didn’t find his body. They came and told us that they had seen a vision of angels who said he was alive. Then some of our companions went to the tomb and found it just as the women had said, but they did not see Jesus.”

He said to them, “How foolish you are, and how slow to believe all that the prophets have spoken! Did not the Messiah have to suffer these things and then enter his glory?” And beginning with Moses and all the Prophets, he explained to them what was said in all the Scriptures concerning himself.

As they approached the village to which they were going, Jesus continued on as if he were going farther. But they urged him strongly, “Stay with us, for it is nearly evening; the day is almost over.” So, he went in to stay with them.

When he was at the table with them, he took bread, gave thanks, broke it, and began to give it to them. Then their eyes were opened, and they recognized him, and he disappeared from their sight. They asked each other, “Were not our hearts burning within us while he talked with us on the road and opened the Scriptures to us?”

They got up and returned at once to Jerusalem. There they found the Eleven and those with them, assembled together and saying, “It is true! The Lord has risen and has appeared to Simon.” Then the two told what had happened on the way and how Jesus was recognized by them when he broke the bread.”

Luke 24:13-35

Looking back at the scripture reading, we see two of Christ’s disciples walking on the road to Emmaus, which means they were walking away from Jerusalem. These men were walking away from the place where Christ died at Golgotha. (Perhaps they were disillusioned, or they had given up hope. They said as much to Jesus as He walked with them. They said, “We had hoped He would be the redeemer of Israel.”)

While the two disciples are walking along the road, a third person joins them. Living on this side of history, we know it to be Jesus because the Bible tells us it was Him. (For some reason, Jesus kept them from recognizing Him. Perhaps, He wanted time to talk with them and explain the scripture to them.

I find it interesting that in the short time, Jesus walked with these two disciples, He opened their eyes to so many things. The Bible passage above from Luke says,

“He said to them, “How foolish you are, and how slow to believe all that the prophets have spoken! Did not the Messiah have to suffer these things and then enter his glory?” And beginning with Moses and all the Prophets, he explained to them what was said in all the Scriptures concerning himself.”

The distance between Jerusalem and Emmaus is about 20 miles. Unfortunately, the Bible doesn’t state how far along the road the disciples were when they encountered Jesus. However, we do know they were just outside Emmaus when they stopped. So, somewhere between 1 and 19 miles, the disciples met Jesus. In that short distance, He explained to them the scriptures concerning Him, beginning with Moses. (Perhaps they stopped and sat for periods of time along the way).

Looking back at the scripture reading, what opened their eyes? What suddenly caused them to recognize Jesus? (They said it was the breaking of the bread, not necessarily as in communion, but as a shared meal.)

They also said that their hearts burned as He (Jesus) explained and revealed the scripture to them.

God’s word will always explain what we don’t understand. But we must read, digest, and apply it in our daily lives.

 The disciples said, “We had hoped He would be the redeemer of Israel.” (Once the scriptures were explained to them, they realized Jesus was the redeemer they hoped for.)

No sooner did Jesus disappear while seated with the two disciples, and the men decided to return to Jerusalem. (They wanted to report to the Apostles and Christ’s other followers that they had seen Him, Jesus, and, He was alive.)

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