by Rev. Fr. Dr. V Kurian Thomas, Valiyaparambil
Next Sunday is the 4th Sunday after Easter. Gospel reading is from Luke 24:13-35.
Gospel Reading: On the Road to Emmaus (Luke 24:13-35)
13 Now that same day two of them were going to a village called Emmaus, about seven miles[a] from Jerusalem. 14 They were talking with each other about everything that had happened. 15 As they talked and discussed these things with each other, Jesus himself came up and walked along with them; 16 but they were kept from recognizing him. 17 He asked them, What are you discussing together as you walk along? They stood still, their faces downcast. 18 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?19 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. 20 The chief priests and our rulers handed him over to be sentenced to death, and they crucified him; 21 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. 22 In addition, some of our women amazed us. They went to the tomb early this morning 23 but didn't find his body. They came and told us that they had seen a vision of angels, who said he was alive. 24 Then some of our companions went to the tomb and found it just as the women had said, but they did not see Jesus. 25 He said to them, How foolish you are, and how slow to believe all that the prophets have spoken! 26 Did not the Messiah have to suffer these things and then enter his glory? 27 And beginning with Moses and all the Prophets, he explained to them what was said in all the Scriptures concerning himself. 28 As they approached the village to which they were going, Jesus continued on as if he were going farther. 29 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. 30 When he was at the table with them, he took bread, gave thanks, broke it and began to give it to them. 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? 33 They got up and returned at once to Jerusalem. There they found the Eleven and those with them, assembled together 34 and saying, It is true! The Lord has risen and has appeared to Simon. 35 Then the two told what had happened on the way, and how Jesus was recognized by them when he broke the bread. "
On the day of the resurrection of Jesus, two of the disciples were traveling to a village seven miles from Jerusalem, called Emmaus. One was Cleopas and the other, an unidentified companion. Their life was filled with disappointment and defeat for their master had been horribly put to death. Only a week before, on Palm Sunday, the disciples had hopes that had risen to a high level when the crowds had hailed, now lay dead in a tomb. Their hopes were dashed and the dream was over. All of these are summed up in the words of disciples Cleopas and companion who told the stranger that joined them on their way home to Emmaus. Cleopas and his companion had left the dissipated and confused disciples with the events of Good Friday fresh in their memories.
As the travelers made their way to Emmaus, the stranger caught up with them. It was the risen Christ but the disciples did not recognize him.
The stranger asked them, "What are you discussing together as you walk along?" They poured out their sad story to someone who seemed so willing to listen. Cleopas then expresses surprise at even being asked what was worrying them. "Are you the only one living in Jerusalem who doesn't know the things that have happened in the city?" Jesus continued patiently and innocently asks, "What things?" "About Jesus of Nazareth," they eagerly replied.
The Emmaus Two told the stranger that Jesus was a prophet, powerful in word and deed before God and all the people. As the Two spoke of the cross and gave a heartening experience, the stranger pointed to them God's revelation in the Scripture. Jesus explained to them what was said in all the scriptures concerning himself.
Jesus gave the Emmaus travelers the greatest Old Testament experience. Jesus had fulfilled that which had been prophesied over the centuries that the Old Testament anticipation of his passion and triumph of life over death proved that he was indeed the Messiah. Jesus convinced them that he had to suffer these things to fulfill the Scripture.
The two hour journey from Jerusalem to Emmaus must have seemed like five minutes, being so wrapped up in this absorbing conversation with the Lord whom they hadn't yet recognized.
As they approached the village to which they were g going to, Jesus acted as if he was going further.
The road that was marked by defeat and shattered hopes now turned out for them full of possibilities. They got on the road and returned to Jerusalem. Hope was restored. Their dream had come true. Jesus was alive. They went back to be witnesses to the resurrection and tell everybody the good news. Jesus Christ stunned the Romans with his resurrection. Jesus took what seemed like the most dead and hopeless situation and made it into something new.
If our life is moving in the wrong direction, we can trust Jesus to turn things around. If we allow Jesus, he will put us on the same road again only this time with a different destination. Let the blessings of the Scripture and the Holy Eucharist become our hope and salvation to glorify the name of our Lord Jesus Christ.
Road to Emmaus Sermon: Luke 24:13-35
From St Paul's Lutheran Church
The Man Who Came To Dinner - Luke 24:13-35
by Dr. Donald T. Williams
Into Remembrance (Luke 24:13-35)
by Matthew T. Phillips
Our Road to Emmaus
by David Lose
On the Road to Emmaus
by Rev. Fr. John Thomas Alummoottil
Emmaus Experience - Devotional Thoughts for 4th Sunday after Easter
by Rev. Fr. Mathew C. Chacko
The Risen Christ on the Road to Emmaus
by Rev. Fr. P.C. Eapen
Devotional Thoughts for 3rd Sunday after New Sunday
by Jose Kurian Puliyeril
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