Wednesday, April 11, 2018

He Brings Clarity

“O Foolish men and slow of heart to believe in all that the prophets have spoken! Was it not necessary for the Christ to suffer these things and to enter into His glory? Then beginning with Moses and with all the prophets, He explained to them the things concerning Himself in all the Scriptures.”Luke 24:25-27
This week we have been learning about the two disciples who witnessed the crucifixion and were on their way home to Emmaus.  Jesus joined them, although they did not recognize him, and helped them with the doubt and hopelessness they were experiencing after seeing Jesus crucified. They had hoped He would redeem Israel but all their hope was gone now.  Jesus walked alongside them and helped turn their doubt into faith.
·   He BringsClarity- Jesus “reframes” the trauma of the past days.  Then Jesus responds to all of their talk and their sorrow, and He was very pointed in what He said to them in the scripture above.  We might expect Jesus to say, "I understand." But He says, "O foolish ones, and slow of heart to believe…"  Jesus’ words are not meant in contempt but in compassion.  It’s the same sadness He had for the disciples when they did not understand what He was trying to tell them about Himself.  ("Moses and with all the prophets"is an old way of describing all of the Old Testament.)  You see, these disciples and all of the other followers of Jesus had failed to comprehend what the Scriptures actually had said about Jesus. Most that had been following Jesus were eagerly waiting a strong, military Messiah who would reestablish the earthly Kingdom of Israel and restore the Jews to their rightful reign as shining lights of God's triumphant victory. To them, the idea of a Messiah who would suffer, be meek, winsome, and approachable was completely foreign to their expectation. 
And so Jesus begins to relate the truth of the Old Testament to them.  Jesus may have pointed them to one of the most powerful prophecies of all from the prophet Isaiah, Surely our grief He Himself bore, And our sorrows He carried; Yet we ourselves esteemed Him stricken, Smitten of God, and afflicted. But He was pierced through for our transgressions, He was crushed for our iniquities; The chastening for our well-being fell upon Him, And by His scourging we are healed. All of us like sheep have gone astray, Each of us has turned to his own way; But the LORD has caused the iniquity of us all To fall on Him. (Isaiah 53:4-6)
·   He Restores ConfidenceAnd they approached the village where they were going, and He acted as though He were going farther. But they urged Him, saying, "Stay with us, for it is getting toward evening, and the day is now nearly over." So He went in to stay with them.  When He had reclined at the table with them, He took the bread and blessed it, and breaking it, He began giving it to them.  Then their eyes were opened and they recognized Him; and He vanished from their sight.  Luke 24:28-31 By this time the three travelers were in Emmaus and the two disciples stood in front of their home. Jesus was about to go on His way, but the two disciples urged Him to come in. Not long after Jesus had entered the house, He takes on the position of host.  Supper time came and this Stranger took the bread and broke it. All of a sudden they recognized Him! "Then their eyes were opened and they knew Him …" Here, in the quiet of their house, Jesus took the bread and handed it to His friends, and I believe, that possibly as they took the bread from His hands, they noticed the scars where the nails had been, and then they knew… it was Jesus. He had truly risen!
Scripture to Claim:
Fear not, for I am with you. Do not be dismayed. I am your God. I will strengthen you; I will help you; I will uphold you with My victorious right hand.  Isaiah 41:10 

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