Thursday 04 April 2013

Bible Book:

Luke 24:35-48 Thursday 4 April 2013


Two disconsolate travellers, walking to Emmaus from Jerusalem(Luke 24:13-35), were joined by a stranger, whoseemed unaware of recent events; in conversation, these areinterpreted in the light of Scripture; at a simple meal, he wasrecognised for who he was - and promptly disappears. Now rushingback to Jerusalem, the travellers announced the astonishing news totheir friends - and there he was again!

John 20:19 makes it more explicit than theGospel of Luke that the disciples were hiding in fear from theJewish authorities. Luke's Gospel notes that there was asignificant community of people: the eleven and their companions(cf Acts 1:13-14). It may be that this was the sameplace identified by Jesus for the celebration the Passover (Luke22:8-13) - a 'safe' house. The upstairs room of a house wasoften a gathering place for significant events: Dorcas was laid outin a room upstairs (Acts 9:37,39); Paul met with the community inTroas in a room upstairs (Acts20:8).

The gathered company had heard the story of the Emmaus Roadencounter from the two travellers, but they were still "startledand terrified" (v. 37) when Jesus appeared among them. Had they notbelieved what they had heard? Were they concerned that the securityof the room had been breached (though not wholly surprisingly inthis case as Jesus knew the householder)?

Notable here is Jesus' insistence that he was 'for real'. Oldertranslations render John 20:17 as Jesus asking Mary Magdalene notto touch him ("hold on to": NRSV), but Matthew's Gospel records thewomen holding on to the feet of the risen Christ (28:9). Here, in the room of bewildered friends,Jesus invited them to touch him and to give him food. Did theytouch him? We do not know, just as we do not whether Thomas touchedhim (John 20:27), but certainly Jesus ate some fish(verses 42-43). And in that simple act, he became real forthem.

To Ponder

  • Think of a time when you were startled, even terrified, whenyour wildest dream came true. Why was this so?
  • What makes Jesus 'real' for you? 
Previous Page Wednesday 03 April 2013
Next Page Friday 05 April 2013