THEY Were Kept From Recognizing Him...
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Now that same day two of them were going to a village called Emmaus, about seven miles from Jerusalem. They were talking with each other about everything that had happened. As they talked and discussed these things with each other, Jesus himself came up and walked along with them; but they were kept from recognizing him.
He asked them, “What are you discussing together as you walk along?”
They stood still, their faces downcast. One of them, named Cleopas, asked him, “Are you the only one visiting Jerusalem who does not know the things that have happened there in these days?”
“What things?” he asked.
“About Jesus of Nazareth,” they replied. “He was a prophet, powerful in word and deed before God and all the people. The chief priests and our rulers handed him over to be sentenced to death, and they crucified him; but we had hoped that he was the one who was going to redeem Israel. And what is more, it is the third day since all this took place. In addition, some of our women amazed us. They went to the tomb early this morning but didn’t find his body. They came and told us that they had seen a vision of angels, who said he was alive. Then some of our companions went to the tomb and found it just as the women had said, but they did not see Jesus.”
BlogFam, Our scripture passage for today is one of the popular resurrection stories you have possibly heard through the years. Two men were walking on the road to Emmaus and Jesus joins them, engages them in conversation, and they do not realize who He is until He is gone. Now that is a very quick summary of what happens in Luke 24: 13-35. We will go through this section of verses as is our norm but I wanted to just state that summary from the beginning of this section. I think that it is so interesting that these two men did not recognize the one for whom they mourned BUT in light of how the text reads in the first few verses of this section, I am not surprised.
Now that same day two of them were going to a village called Emmaus, about seven miles from Jerusalem. They were talking with each other about everything that had happened. As they talked and discussed these things with each other, Jesus himself came upland walked along with them; but they were kept from recognizing him.
Question. Who or what kept them from recognizing Jesus?
Jesus himself came up and walked along with them;
but they were kept from recognizing him.
Why would Jesus join them in conversation and withhold His identity? What thoughts crossed the minds of these two men as they began to recount the news of the day with this stranger who seemed to have no clue? Were they hesitant to believe that Jesus would indeed rise again such that their doubt blinded them to the presence of Jesus in their midst? Did they expect to see Jesus so soon after his death and burial? Did they even expect to see Jesus at all in spite of what Jesus and the prophecies of old had proclaimed?
As they talked and discussed these things with each other,Jesus himself came up
and walked along with them; but they were kept from recognizing him.
I do not know the exact answer to any of these questions. I can only speculate as to why they missed Jesus while walking and talking in His presence on that road. I do not think that Jesus came in some kind of weird costume or with a different hair cut or any other physical characteristic that might be out of character for how these two men were used to seeing Jesus. BUT, BlogFam, I do think that there was a difference. There was a difference in His body as Jesus their Master Teacher and NOW Jesus as their Resurrected Lord. Yes, there was something different about His appearance because He had been raised from the dead and at the resurrection of our bodies into the life that is to come, well,we are promised glorified bodies. I think that Jesus had a glorified body and they were kept from recognizing Him.
Jesus had come in a way they had never seen before and would likely never see again but they just assumed that it was some uninformed stranger whose head must have been buried in the sand for Him not to have known what was going on!
On the other hand, perhaps a better question to you is this: Who or what keeps YOU from recognizing Jesus? Have you given up on ever having a visitation of the spirit with you? How have you ignored the presence of the Lord in your midst? Why are you skeptical about Jesus being able and available to walk and talk with you? BE HONEST. WHO or WHAT is keeping you from recognizing Jesus?
Friends, there are times in our lives that I am sure that Jesus is present and actively engaged in the details of our lives - walking and talking in our midst by the Holy Spirit and through the voice of His disciples; however, because His presence is so full of glory, we will shout, dance, talk, preach, teach, pray, sing, exhort, prophesy, meditate and NOT even recognize that Jesus is already here. I believe that we miss moments and waste time walking and talking in the presence of the ONE who has already done what He said He would do - RISE AGAIN - but because something in our lives is keeping us from recognizing Jesus, we do all of these “holy” activities in the presence of one who has become a stranger to us.
My sistas and brothas, Do you know WHO are you talking to? Do you recognize Him? OR is there a sin or weight that so easily offsets your vision? WHO or WHAT is keeping you from recognizing Jesus? Jesus has already done what He said He would do but you are still mourning, wondering, waiting, hoping for a resurrection that already IS. And so were these men. As they recounted the news of the day from Jesus’ sentence to his crucifixion to His death to His burial and now to His empty tomb, they were mourning, wondering, waiting, and hoping for the ONE who was already walking and talking with them on that road to Emmaus.
My sistas and brothas, I pray that on today we would confess the sin and the weight that has so easily offset our vision. I pray that we would NOT be kept from recognizing Jesus but that when we sense His presence in ordinary and extraordinary ways, I pray that we would respond by faith and not continue to walk and talk as if He is not already here. I pray that we would see Him as He chooses to present Himself through men and women, boys and girls and that when Jesus fulfills His promises, answers our prayers, forgives our sins, and fights our battles, we would not be ignorant of His presence and hand upon our lives. I pray that you would SEE clearly the ways in which our Lord is choosing to resurrect your life and the lives of those around you. I pray that as you walk along your journey of this life, that when Jesus joins you and carries you, comforts you, corrects you, or simply converses with you, YOU will surrender to those holy moments and let God have God’s way!
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