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While we don’t have Jesus to teach us the Scriptures face-to-face, we’ve been given the gift of the Holy Spirit who can help us along the way as we read God’s word

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13 That very day two of them were going to a village named Emmaus, about seven miles from Jerusalem, 14 and they were talking with each other about all these things that had happened. 15 While they were talking and discussing together, Jesus himself drew near and went with them. 16 But their eyes were kept from recognizing him. 17 And he said to them, “What is this conversation that you are holding with each other as you walk?” And they stood still, looking sad. 18 Then one of them, named Cleopas, answered him, “Are you the only visitor to Jerusalem who does not know the things that have happened there in these days?” 19 And he said to them, “What things?” And they said to him, “Concerning Jesus of Nazareth, a man who was a prophet mighty in deed and word before God and all the people, 20 and how our chief priests and rulers delivered him up to be condemned to death, and crucified him. 21 But we had hoped that he was the one to redeem Israel. Yes, and besides all this, it is now the third day since these things happened. 22 Moreover, some women of our company amazed us. They were at the tomb early in the morning, 23 and when they did not find his body, they came back saying that they had even seen a vision of angels, who said that he was alive. 24 Some of those who were with us went to the tomb and found it just as the women had said, but him they did not see.” 25 And he said to them, “O foolish ones, and slow of heart to believe all that the prophets have spoken! 26 Was it not necessary that the Christ should suffer these things and enter into his glory?” 27 And beginning with Moses and all the Prophets, he interpreted to them in all the Scriptures the things concerning himself.

 

“You never listen to me!” A phrase we hear many times. Sure, we were looking at the person while they were talking and heard their voice, but we didn’t listen.  If asked what was just said, we’d have to fumble around with words, trying very hard to remember, all the while trying to look like we really knew what they said. But, it’s really hard to fool someone when they know we didn’t listen.  Perhaps this is what Jesus was thinking when he joined the men on their walk to Emmaus.

After Cleopas’ emotive response to Jesus’ questions about what happened in Jerusalem, Jesus responds by saying, “O foolish ones, and slow of heart.” He seems struck with frustration because these guys were part of his group of disciples. Since they were able to recount the tomb discovery fairly accurately, we can safely believe they were around Jesus during his teachings and while they walked from place to place.  They sat at his feet.  And, just like the reactions of those who know we heard but didn’t really listen, Jesus laced them with some rather harsh words.  But, perhaps unlike those we don’t listen to, he didn’t stop there.  It seems there’s a lesson for us to learn about helping those around us know and understand what we say to them.

As they continued walking to Emmaus, Jesus recounted the Scriptures once again, beginning with Moses and all the prophets, educating them about the things they witnessed in Jerusalem.  While we don’t have Jesus to teach us the Scriptures face-to-face, we’ve been given the gift of the Holy Spirit who can help us along the way as we read God’s word.  In Genesis 12:1-3, we have a stronghold of faith and one of the early pivotal messages highlighting the story that the Bible encompasses.  This passage describes God’s calling to Abram (to be renamed Abraham later) to another land, and the promises for Abram’s faith.  Read the passage, and consider just how vast and far reaching God’s promises are.

 

Now the Lord said to Abram, “Go from your country and your kindred
and your father’s house to the land that I will show you.
And I will make of you a great nation, and I will bless you
and make your name great, so that you will be a blessing.
I will bless those who bless you, and him who dishonors you I will curse,
and in you all the families of the earth shall be blessed.”
– Genesis 12:1-3

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By Rich Obrecht 

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