Scripture Focus: Luke 24.31-32
31 Then their eyes were opened and they recognized him, and he disappeared from their sight. 32 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?”
From John: As we prepare for Student Writers to take us through the book of Acts, we continue through the last three chapters of Luke’s gospel. Don’t forget that, beginning tomorrow, July 15, and continuing through August 10th, approximately 90% of donations to The Park Forum will be directed to scholarships/stipends for these talented students. Give during this time to support our ministry and theirs.
Reflection: Our Hearts Burn Within
By Erin Newton
Rembrandt painted the scene from Luke 24 on two separate occasions. The 1629 version of “The Supper at Emmaus’‘ depicts the reaction of the two men upon the revelation of Jesus’ identity. One man responds in astonishment, face illumined by the divine glow of Jesus. The other has fallen to Jesus’ feet. This version seems to capture the wonderment, “were not our hearts burning within us…?”
After the women had visited the tomb of Jesus on the third day, Luke 24 describes the meeting of Jesus with two other disciples on the road to Emmaus. While traveling, the men had not recognized Jesus and treated him as a stranger. Yet as they talked about the recent crucifixion, this “stranger” began to educate them about the cohesive message of the Old Testament with the recent events.
Once they entered Emmaus and convinced him to stay for dinner, only then were they able to see the man as Jesus himself.
A small miracle had taken place on the road to Emmaus that day. Jesus, truly present in physical form with the signs of the crucifixion scarring his body, could not be recognized. The man these two disciples had spent years following was obscured in their minds.
The journey together likely lasted for hours. The mind-boggling, incomprehensive death of Jesus was now explained as part of the larger story of God’s work in history. All the questions they had were being answered by the man they did not really know.
For many of us, we might hear the words of Christ without seeing him as the divine Savior. We read about Jesus but remain convinced he’s a stranger to our lives. There is a difference between hearing Jesus answer questions about life and seeing Jesus as the answer to questions of life.
When that moment comes, he’s no longer “just a good teacher.” He’s Jesus, our Savior.
When Moses had spent time upon the mountain in the presence of God, his face glowed intensely. The baby in Elizabeth’s womb leapt at the presence of Jesus in the womb of Mary. Like the men on the road, our hearts burn when we are in the presence of God.
Jesus disappeared the moment the men recognized who he was. They would wait for the Spirit to come and dwell within their burning hearts. For us, we recognize Jesus and receive the Helper instantaneously.
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