Revd Sara’s Eastertide Reflections The Road to Emmaus The experience of the two men upon the road to Emmaus is a powerful testimony. It serves as one of many post-resurrection appearances of Jesus, showing how we can look to Scripture to see how God’s plan has unfolded.
In the final chapter of the Gospel of Luke, there appears a beautiful story about two men, distraught over the death of Jesus, who find themselves in deep conversation with the Teacher Himself — only they do not realize it is Him.
As they walk the road to Emmaus, these two men learn about the Christ directly from the source. When they finally realize who they had been talking with the entire time, they rush to tell the eleven apostles the good news: The Lord had indeed risen! It’s a powerful tale, one filled with lessons about discernment, hope, and the truth of the Old Testament prophecies.
The Emmaus story appears in Luke 24:13-35, days after Christ’s crucifixion, the same day the women brought spices to Jesus’ tomb and found the stone rolled away and Jesus’ body nowhere to be found.
When the women told the eleven apostles what they had found, and that two angels had spoken to them, reminding them of Christ’s resurrection, the apostles did not believe them.
Later that same day, as Luke 24 reveals, two men are walking together on a road going to a village called Emmaus. The men are discussing all the events of the past few days, and we see that they are troubled; Luke’s account tells us their faces are “downcast” (v. 17). Jesus comes alongside them and listens to their conversation, but these men do not know it is Jesus. This lack of recognition is not necessarily their fault. Scripture tells us they were “kept from recognizing him” (v. 16).
When Jesus asks what they are discussing, the men explain their version of the past days’ events, as well as their disappointment over their hopes, which are seemingly unfulfilled, and confusion about what the women had seen at the tomb.
Jesus expresses gentle rebuke, telling the men, “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” (v.25-26).
Then Jesus proceeds to explain the Old Testament stories, from Moses to the prophets, and how they all fully and completely point to the Christ.
The men still do not realize they are speaking with Jesus, but they eagerly welcome this conversation. When they reach Emmaus, they invite this mystery companion to stay with them instead of continuing on in his journey, and Jesus agrees.
Finally, at the table, when Jesus gives thanks and breaks the bread with them, they recognize Him. Immediately, Jesus disappears, and they rush back to Jerusalem that very evening, find the eleven apostles, and tell them what happened.
It appears the men were debating what was true and why things had happened, for Jesus’ first reaction is to tell them they are “foolish” and “slow” in their belief. Then Jesus teaches them the truth as revealed in the scriptures.
Here, it seems Jesus is attempting to help their unbelief by pointing out the truth has already been revealed to them.
The main point is that all that has happened with Jesus has already been predicted and written down by Moses and the prophets and is now being fulfilled.
Jesus wants them to know that although things look hopeless and they might have doubts, they have to look no further than Scripture to understand what happened and what will happen: First the Christ must suffer, then He is glorified.
It is all part of God’s plan and his love for us all
love and prayers Revd Sara