Wednesday 03 April 2013

Bible Book:

Luke 24:13-35 Wednesday 3 April 2013


This evocative story, recorded only by Luke's Gospel (but see Mark16:12-13), raises intriguing questions:

  • Where was Emmaus? There are several possibilities. The sevenmiles (verse 13) is sixty stadia in Greek and roughly elevenkilometres. It was a long walk back to Jerusalem after dark hadfallen.
  • Why is the second traveller not named? If one was Cleopas, wasthe other his wife? John's Gospel records Mary, wife of Clopas, ashaving been at the foot of the cross (John19:25). Is this that faithful woman, returning home,despondent?
  • Why did the travellers not recognise Jesus as he joined them?Were they walking east, and, turning back to look at the traveller,blinded by the setting sun? Or was it simply that, not expecting tosee the Lord, they just didn't!

The goal of the Methodist/Roman Catholic InternationalCommission is that of 'full communion in faith, mission andsacramental life' - the events of the Emmaus road speak of allthree.

Doubt and fear assail us all, if we are honest, as they did theEmmaus pair. It is as they conversed with the stranger that theysaw things they had been missing, that they found their heartsburning within them as he talked to them and faith wasrestored.

Hospitality is the essence of faith - hospitality to each otherand to the stranger, hospitality of the table and hospitality ofattitude. The welcome extended to this stranger brought itsparticular reward (cf Genesis 18:1-10). As bread is broken, so arebarriers.

Such is the experience of word and of bread that it must beshared, we are compelled to witness to what we have received: theytold others what had happened on the road, and how he had been madeknown to them in the breaking of the bread: this says it all.

To Ponder

  • How important to you is the breaking of the bread? Reflect onthe last time you received Holy Communion.
  • When we are enthusiastic about something, it is easy to shareit with others. How enthusiastic are you - really - about yourfaith?
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