"And now the evening has come, for which Christ has longed,
and he is at peace in the rich man's grave, after dying with the wicked
according to the prophetic word, which said that he should make 'his grave with
the wicked and with the rich in his death.' But who can leave the record of this
day without going on to the next chapter with its joyful sequel? The night had
come and passed. 'Weeping may endure for a night, but joy cometh in the
morning.' Never was the saying so wondrously fulfilled as on this new day which
begins 'at the rising of the sun.' But another sun had already risen, the sun of
righteousness, never more to go down, though it would pass away from the sight
of men to return again. This resurrection morning is without clouds. Christ is
risen" (CAL, Xd 117:160,161).
THE FIRST DAY OF THE WEEK: Lit, "day one of the seven".
The beginning of a new creation week! Cp Gen 1: a new creation, "day one"! God
had said, "Let there be light", and now there was! Cp Col 1:15-18: Jesus the
beginning of the new creation! To the disciples, this day (when they understood
it later) would mark the beginning of their new lives. This new "Sun" of the
morning was to drive away the dark shadows of lost hope, and create a new spirit
within the disciples (Isa 9:1,2; 2Co 4:6).
THE WOMEN TOOK THE SPICES... AND WENT TO THE TOMB: As
soon as the Sabbath restrictions were past, ie after sunset on Saturday -- the 3
women (close companions of Christ in life) prepare to give their last token of
love to their Lord in his death. Early on Sunday morning, at first light in the
east, they set out for the tomb. (Did they make two separate visits to the tomb?
see Mat 28:1n.)
At this time, Mary Magdalene goes to tell Peter and John (Joh
THE STONE ROLLED AWAY FROM THE TOMB: Actually, rolled
some distance away and laid flat (cp Mat 28:2; Mar 16:4; Joh 20:1).
Was ever a mountain so "large" as the great stone which sealed
Christ's tomb? Truly, as miracles go, no miracle has been or could be so great
as the one that caused this "very large" stone to be removed, and thus
proclaimed Christ's tomb to be open... forevermore.
Jesus had told his followers, "I tell you the truth, if anyone
says to this mountain, 'Go, throw yourself into the sea,' and does not doubt in
his heart but believes that what he says will happen, it will be done for him' "
(Mar 11:23). Of course, we have trouble with moving literal mountains, even as
we have trouble explaining this passage.
But seen from a spiritual perspective, isn't the greatest
"mountain" of difficulty -- which no man can move -- death and the grave?
Engineers with bulldozers and explosives can move even literal mountains. But
who among them can move the mountainous "stone" that covers the grave? Not a
And even the disciples of Jesus could not move such a stone
from the mouth of his sepulcher... not at that time; they were weeping in
sorrow, and hiding in fear. It was the faith of Jesus alone -- though he was
dead and unconscious in the tomb -- that moved the hand of the angels of God,
and rolled back the stone. It may be said that the greatest miracle that Jesus
ever performed was this: the blood of this wholly righteous man cried out from
the depths of the earth, and the Father heard!
Do WE, today, have faith to move mountains? The answer, I
believe, is really another question: 'Do WE have faith that the greatest
"mountain" has already been moved?' "Therefore I tell you, whatever you ask for
in prayer, believe that you have received it, and it will be yours" (Mar 11:24).
Our faith may be -- not a prospective -- but a retrospective faith: we look
backward, and ask, 'Do I really believe that the "mountain" has been moved?' If
we truly believe that, then -- it is absolutely sure and certain -- ALL THINGS
are possible for us!
"Open" things of Luk 24: (1) open sepulchre (v 2); (2) open
Scripture (v 27); (3) open door (v 29); (4) open eyes (v 31); (5) open heart (v
38); (6) open minds (v 45); (7) opened heavens (v 51).
TWO MEN: Angels (Luk 24:23; Joh 20:12).
WHY DO YOU LOOK FOR THE LIVING AMONG THE DEAD?: Those
who "live" in Christ will not remain among the "dead" things of this world: Col
3:1-3. "If Christ be not risen..." (1Co 15).
AMONG THE DEAD: Other tombs were there.
MUST: Cp vv 26,44,46: all from "dei" = "there is need";
from root "to bind".
Second visit by Peter: he only looks in this time, rather than
entering (ct Joh 20:6). He goes away -- even closer now to believing (cp vv
GOT UP: "Anastasis" -- sig a renewal of hope (ie 1Pe
1:3). Sometimes soon after Christ appears to Peter (1Co 15:5; cp Joh
Vv 13-35: Here is Jesus the great physician and counselor at
work. Here were two people in a very distressed state, unable to think
First of all Jesus asked questions: he got them to talk,
established a relationship, and so made them receptive to what he had to say.
His opening gambit drew from Cleopas only rudeness (people who are hurt often
react in this way), but he persisted and they shared their trouble. In this way
healing was able to begin.
Second, he explained the Scripture, showing them that what had
been puzzling them -- the death of the one whom they thought would redeem them
by ending the Roman occupation -- had actually be prophesied centuries before as
God's way of redeeming, in the sense of ending the burden and bondage of
Finally, he revealed his presence. "Stay with us," they had
said to him on reaching Emmaus. In the deepest sense he did, even after they
ceased to see him. What a blessing for them that they were given to hospitality!
What they would have missed had they not been!
Jesus is still the great physician and counselor today. We
shall receive his healing as we tell him our trouble, let him minister to us
from Scripture, and ask him to assure us that as we go through what may feel
like fire and flood, he goes with us and will stay with us till the road
Were the two disciples going to Emmaus husband and wife? We
know one of them was Cleopas (v 18), and John tells us that his wife Mary went
to the foot of the cross during the crucifixion (John 19:25). With both of them
in Jerusalem for the passover, it seems probable that Cleopas would travel home
to Emmaus with his wife. Luke 24:28,29 supports this, since it appears to say
that they live together in the same house.
They were so wrapped up in speculations and discussions, that
they did not notice the stranger approaching...
Do we not always realize that Christ is walking with us? He
appeared "in another form" (Mar 16:12). Lesson: even today, Jesus appears to men
in other forms -- ie, through us.
DISCUSSING: Antiballo: strong word: Ideas and
arguments, hopes and guesses, speculations and objections were being thrown back
and forth by these two on the way to Emmaus.
DOWNCAST: Sw Psa 43:2, LXX.
VISITOR: Gr "paroikeo" = "foreigner", a Diaspora
BEFORE GOD: Baptism and transfiguration.
THE CHIEF PRIESTS AND OUR RULERS: They blamed Jews and
REDEEM: Gr "lutroo" = to pay the price, to set free:
see Lesson, Redemption.
THEY CAME AND TOLD US THAT THEY HAD SEEN A VISION OF
ANGELS: Isn't it interesting that the two disciples had no difficulty
believing that the women had seen angels; it was the message that they had
problems with. We would do well to think on this. We "entertain angels" if we
are willing, but do we always see them as such? An "angel" in our lives may be
anyone sent by God to stimulate us in beneficial ways.
MOSES AND ALL THE PROPHETS: Meaning, the whole of the
OT (cp Luk 24:44).
ALL THE SCRIPTURES: Which would have included, at the
very least, (1) Isaac: seed of promise, typically slain, and raised in a figure;
(2) Joseph: beloved son, rejected by brethren, imprisoned, yet later exalted to
be Savior of the world; and (3) Isaiah's suffering Servant, who would afterward
see the travail of his soul, and be satisfied. And always in Scripture, the
double element of suffering and glory.
HE TOOK BREAD, GAVE THANKS, BROKE IT AND BEGAN TO GIVE IT
TO THEM: But he did not partake of it himself: Luk 22:18.
THEIR EYES WERE OPENED AND THEY RECOGNIZED HIM: How did
they recognize him? (1) He gave thanks, (2) He was host, (3) Similar to Last
Supper, and (4) They saw nail-prints in his hands.
The opening of the eyes of the two who had walked with Jesus
echoes Adam and Eve's experience (Gen 3:7) -- when they had taken of the tree of
the knowledge of good and evil. By contrast, the two on the road to Emmaus were
associated with the tree of life -- Jesus -- whereas Adam and Eve were barred
Also, the opening of the eyes of Adam and Eve caused confusion
and distress whereas the opening of the eyes of the two here caused joy and
WERE NOT OUR HEARTS BURNING...?: We, Bre of Christ,
also have Christ with us to expound the Scriptures: we have the NT gospels and
letters in which Christ and his apostles amplify the OT history and prophecy. To
the extent that our Bible classes lack the excitement of those disciples, it is
because to that extent we fail to take advantage of the wonderful benefits we
have under our very noses. Our hearts should burn within us every time we open
OUR HEARTS: Lit "our heart" (singular): two disciples,
but one heart!
OPENED THE SCRIPTURES: And thereby their hearts (v
RETURNED AT ONCE TO JERUSALEM: In haste, as in Isa
52:7: "how beautiful... the feet". On the road to Emmaus it was daylight, but
their hearts were filled with darkness. On the road to Jerusalem, it was dark,
but their hearts were filled with light.
WHILE THEY WERE STILL TALKING ABOUT THIS: The witnesses
were seeking to convince their listeners...
STARTLED AND FRIGHTENED: Cp Gen 45:3,12: Joseph's Bre
were troubled at his appearance. Cp Exo 19:16: trembling at Sinai.
MY HANDS AND MY FEET: Bone of bone, and flesh of flesh:
Gen 2:23; 2Sa 19:12. Isa 49:15,16: engraved on the palms of my hands. Jesus uses
the very expression introduced by Adam of his newly-formed wife in the Garden of
Eden: "bone of bone and flesh of flesh". This indicates the unique mutual
sentiment, feeling, emotion and outlook of Adam with his wife, unique among
marriages, and typifies the fulfillment in Christ and his Bride (Eph 5: 32).
Therein, Christ lays the foundation for the redemption of the apostles, and the
future fellowship meal of the kingdom (Luk 24:43).
TOUCH ME AND SEE: Ct Adam and Eve in Eden: Gen 2:17.
But here, "touch me and LIVE"!
See Isa 49:16.
WRITTEN ABOUT ME: Or poss "written FOR me"! The words
of the Psalms, and other OT, to guide, instruct Jesus? Cp v 27.
THE LAW OF MOSES, THE PROPHETS AND THE PSALMS: The Jews
have no proper name for the OT. They use a word Tank, made up from the initials
of Torah, the Law; Neb, the Prophets, and K'thubim, the Writings, being the
three groups forming the OT in Jewish reckoning.
A man needs more than the printed page of the Bible and a good
memory to make him wise to salvation. He needs a mind opened to give earnest
heed to the heavenly message. He needs eyes opened to behold wondrous things out
of God's law. He needs Christ in his heart. And when this takes place, he steps
by faith into a world in which no shadow of gloom or fear can isolate him from
the love of God which is in Christ Jesus. This then must be our faith. The
resurrection of our Savior is more than a fact to believe in; it is also a
reality to live by: "I have been crucified with Christ and I no longer live, but
Christ lives in me. The life I live in the body, I live by faith in the Son of
God, who loved me and gave himself for me" (Gal 2:20).
WHAT IS WRITTEN: Written where? Psa 22; Isa 53; Psa
AND REPENTANCE AND FORGIVENESS OF SINS WILL BE PREACHED IN
HIS NAME TO ALL NATIONS, BEGINNING AT JERUSALEM: Where, in the Law, Psalms,
and Prophets, is this specifically predicted? "All nations" come to worship
Christ at Jerusalem: Psa 22:27; 67:2; 72:11,17; 82:8; 86:9; 117:1; Isa 2:2;
66:18,20; Jer 3:17; Dan 7:14; Hag 2:7; Zec 8:23.
Here insert the other events described in the last 40 days,
including John 21, in Galilee. Luke appears to skip over these events, and a
superficial reading would suggest that v 49 here leads immediately into v 50 --
which is not true.
HE LIFTED UP HIS HANDS AND BLESSED THEM: In doing so he
is acting as the High Priest: Num 6:24-26!
TAKEN UP: "Anaphero": used for presenting an acceptable
sacrifice: Heb 7:27; 9:28; 13:15; etc.
Cp Mar 16:19. See Psa 16:11; 110:1. Psa 110:1 became the
standard Ascension passage of the early church; it is used in Acts 2:34-36;
7:55,56; Rom 8:34; Eph 1:19-22; 2:6. Compare 1Ti 3:16 and 1Pe 3:22 with Mark
16:19. Also, see Psa 68:18: "You ascended on high."