13 That same day two of Jesus’ followers were going to a village called Emmaus. It was about seven miles from Jerusalem. 14 They were talking with each other about everything that had happened. 15 As they talked about those things, Jesus himself came up and walked along with them. 16 But God kept them from recognizing him. 17 Jesus asked them, “What are you talking about as you walk along?” They stood still, and their faces were sad. 18 One of them was named Cleopas. He said to Jesus, “Are you the only person visiting Jerusalem who doesn’t know? Don’t you know about the things that have happened there in the last few days?” 19 “What things?” Jesus asked. “About Jesus of Nazareth,” they replied. “He was a prophet. He was powerful in what he said and did in the sight of God and all the people. 20 The chief priests and our rulers handed Jesus over to be sentenced to death. They nailed him to a cross. 21 But we had hoped that he was the one who was going to set Israel free. Also, it is the third day since all this happened. 22 Some of our women amazed us too. Early this morning they went to the tomb. 23 But they didn’t find his body. So they came and told us what they had seen. They saw angels, who said Jesus was alive. 24 Then some of our friends went to the tomb. They saw it was empty, just as the women had said. They didn’t see Jesus’ body there.” 25 Jesus said to them, “How foolish you are! How long it takes you to believe all that the prophets said! 26 Didn’t the Messiah have to suffer these things and then receive his glory?” 27 Jesus explained to them what was said about himself in all the Scriptures. He began with Moses and all the Prophets. 28 They approached the village where they were going. Jesus kept walking as if he were going farther. 29 But they tried hard to keep him from leaving. They said, “Stay with us. It is nearly evening. The day is almost over.” So he went in to stay with them. 30 He joined them at the table. Then he took bread and gave thanks. He broke it and began to give it to them. 31 Their eyes were opened, and they recognized him. But then he disappeared from their sight. 32 They said to each other, “He explained to us what the Scriptures meant. Weren’t we excited as he talked with us on the road?” 33 They got up and returned at once to Jerusalem. There they found the 11 disciples and those with them. They were all gathered together. 34 They were saying, “It’s true! The Lord has risen! He has appeared to Simon!” 35 Then the two of them told what had happened to them on the way. They told how they had recognized Jesus when he broke the bread.
Jesus is risen! Why couldn’t these two followers recognise him? I am reminded that Jesus was resurrected in body, yet his body is not the same body condemned to decay and eventual death. When these two disciples looked at Jesus, they were looking at their future as well, walking with them was proof that they would be resurrected from the dead. Jesus goes before his followers as the first to be resurrected from the dead! But this is too much for these disciples to handle… they cannot even recognise him.
Thank you Jesus that you sent us the Holy Spirit, to dwell in us, to be the hope of glory in us while we look forward to our resurrection. Without the Holy Spirit it is too much for us to believe, too much for us to expect in a world of sorrow and death. We already have the beginnings of New Life inside of us and an uncrushable hope. Thank you Jesus!
Written by Andrew Mellor