Committed to teaching and obeying the word of God

The Road to Emmaus: Hearts Burning for God’s Word

Luke 24:13-32

Two of them (v13)

  • “Them” refers to disciples.
  • One of them was named Cleopas.
  • Many commentators have speculated that the other disciple was Cleopas’s wife.

Were going to Emmaus (v13)

  • They were likely returning to their home in Emmaus.
  • They had been in Jerusalem for Passover during the previous week.
  • As disciples, they may have been following Jesus for some time.

Talking with each other about all these things (v14)

  • “All these things” referred to what Luke has described in the previous chapters.
  • Primarily, it means everything that had happened since Thursday night.
    • Jesus’ betrayal, arrest, and trial.
    • Jesus’ death and burial.
    • The missing body and reported resurrection.

Their eyes were kept from recognizing him (v14)

  • It was God who prevented them from recognizing Jesus.
  • This was typical of Jesus’ post-resurrection appearances.
  • Jesus wanted them to be convinced by Scripture and not by the astonishing sign of his appearing to them.

What is this conversation. . . ? (v17)

  • Jesus didn’t ask the question for his own benefit.
  • His purpose was to lay a foundation for his teaching.
    • He would affirm from the word where they were right.
    • He would correct from the word where they were in error.

Their testimony about Jesus (v19)

  • He was a prophet.
    • The role of a prophet was to reveal God to his people.
    • Jesus was the prophet, the ultimate revelation of God.
  • He was mighty in deed and word.
    • His deeds showed that he was both God and Messiah.
    • His teaching pointed people to the Father as well as to his own ministry.
  • He was righteous before God.
  • He amazed the people.
    • For some he was merely a sensation.
    • But for those who followed him, he transformed them.

 Their hope for Jesus (v21)

  • They hoped he was the one to redeem Israel.
  • They understood this redemption to be like their deliverance from Egypt.
    • It was like that, but not political liberation from Rome.
    • The Messiah would bring spiritual liberation from sin and death.

Their account about what had happened (v23-24)

  • The women did not find his body in the tomb.
  • Some of the disciples confirmed what the women had said.
  • But they did not see the risen Lord.
  • They apparently would not believe until someone saw Jesus alive.

Slow of heart to believe (v25)

  • Jesus did not rebuke them for not being convinced by the empty tomb.
  • Jesus did rebuke them for not believing the Scriptures (what the prophets have spoken).

Jesus’ Correction (v26-27)

  • Jesus did not correct them by revealing himself to be the risen Messiah.
  • His rhetorical question (“Was it not necessary. . . ?”) pointed back to the Scriptures and to his own teaching.
  • On the road to Emmaus, he began to interpret the Scriptures to show them the truth of these things.

Beginning with Moses (the Pentateuch) (v27)

  • God’s curse of the serpent (Satan) in Genesis 3:15 prophesied Christ.
  • Noah’s ark was a type of Christ as God saved Noah and his family from God’s judgment (Genesis 6:8).
  • God’s promises to Abraham were to be fulfilled through Christ (Genesis 12).
  • In the New Covenant (Genesis 15) God committed to pay the penalty for sin himself.
  • Christ would replace Isaac as a sacrifice (Genesis 22) and the nations would be blessed through Abraham’s offspring (Christ).
  • In Joseph we see another type of Christ (Genesis 37-50).
    • He was rejected and betrayed.
    • He was falsely accused and punished.
    • He forgave.
    • He saved his people.
  • Moses is also a type of Christ, delivering the people from bondage (Exodus).
  • The Passover Lamb represents Christ (Exodus 12).
  • Manna from heaven and water from the rock represent Christ (Exodus 16-17).
  • Everything about the Tabernacle points to Christ (Exodus 25-27).
  • In Leviticus we see the priests and sacrifices, which represent Jesus (Leviticus).
  • In Numbers the bronze serpent is lifted up (Numbers 21).
  • In Deuteronomy Moses affirms that he is a type of Christ (Deuteronomy 18:15).

All the Prophets (the rest of the Old Testament) (v27)

  • More types of Christ:
    • Joshua who brought the people into the promised land.
    • Each of the judges who delivered the people from their oppressors.
    • Boaz, the kinsman redeemer.
    • David, the anointed one.
    • Jonah, who spent three days in the belly of a fish.
  • There are hundreds of prophecies about Jesus’ birth, death, and resurrection. Here are just a few:
    • Born in Bethlehem (Micah 5:2).
    • Born of a virgin (Isaiah 7:14).
    • Descended from Abraham (Genesis 12:3).
    • From the tribe of Judah (Numbers 24:17).
    • Heir to David’s throne (Isaiah 9:7).
    • Rejected by his own (Psalm 69:8).
    • Betrayed (Psalm 41:9).
    • Falsely accused (Psalm 35:11)
    • Silent before his accusers (Isaiah 53:7).
    • Spat on and struck (Isaiah 50:6).
    • Killed with criminals (Isaiah 53:12).
    • Hands and feet were pierced (Psalm 22:16).
    • Forsaken by the Father (Psalm 22:1).
    • Buried with the rich (Isaiah 53:9).
    • Resurrected from the dead (Psalm 16:10).
    • Ascended into heaven (Psalm 68:18).
    • Seated at God’s right hand (Psalm 100:1).
    • A sacrifice for sin (Isaiah 53:5-12).

Their reaction (v31-32)

  • After sharing a meal with Jesus in Emmaus, their eyes were opened and they recognized him.
  • It wasn’t that something Jesus did triggered the recognition.
  • God opened their eyes because Jesus’ purpose in explaining the Scriptures was accomplished.
  • Having ministered to them, he vanished from their sight.
  • The reaction that Luke records is revealing:
  • They did not remark that they had just seen the risen Lord.
  • They did not remark that he had just vanished,
  • Their focus was on the effect the Scriptures had had on them.

Our Response

  • As with the disciples on the road to Emmaus, God does not expect us to draw our own conclusions from our own observations and experiences.
  • God wants us to look to his word as our source of truth.
  • As Jesus interpreted the Scriptures for the disciples, the Holy Spirit interprets for us today.