Tonight we talked about a walk– a walk that started in Jerusalem. It was at the end of the day and was getting dark. Two of Jesus’ friends were leaving Jerusalem and were on their way to Emmaus. They were very sad because of all the things that had happened in Jerusalem. Jesus had died. They had hoped that he would be able to save them. Instead he had been captured and crucified and now they were very sad, disappointed and confused.
As they were walking a man suddenly appeared along side them. He asked what they were talking about. The men were surprised that this stranger hadn’t heard of all the things that had been happening. They told him how Jesus had died three days ago and how some women were saying that Jesus wasn’t dead, but that he is alive! These men did not understand what was going on.
The man walked quietly beside the two friends. He listened carefully to everything they said. Then he told them some wonderful things. He began to teach them what all the bible stories they knew, meant. He said: “Long ago, God promised to send a Saviour into the world. God said the Saviour would die and then would live again.”
The journey went by very quickly as they listened to this man. He was able to help them see how God had planned for a Saviour and how the scriptures revealed that plan. They arrived at Emmaus and the man was going to keep travelling. These two friends just loved having this man with them and so they invited him to come with them. “The day is over and it is dark”, they said to the man. “Please come with us and rest at our home after this journey.” The man said yes and followed them home.
They all sat down to have a meal together. There was bread on the table and the man took the bread, gave thanks to God, broke the bread and gave it to them. As soon as he did this the two friends recognized who this man was. This was Jesus! Jesus was alive!
All of a sudden, Jesus disappeared. The two friends were so amazed and excited. They ran all the way back to Jerusalem to tell the others. “It’s true! Jesus IS ALIVE!”
This is the story of the road to Emmaus. This road went two ways. It went to Emmaus and it went to Jerusalem.
The friends that were travelling, travelled in two different ways. As they walked to Emmaus, they were sad and disappointed. They were hurt and angry. They did not understand who Jesus really was. But they were not alone.
We know that the man who walked with them was Jesus. He listened to them and then walked beside them. It was with his help they were able to understand what God meant in his promise to save them. They learned that Jesus was their SAVIOUR.
When they travelled to Jerusalem they were happy and excited. They were filled with joy and they wanted to share this good news with others. They ran.
We are like the friends. We are on a journey. We need to decide what way to go on the road.
I once heard a minister say the road to Emmaus was actually pronounced “ah- mess”. I like that. There have been times in my life where I have been sad and disappointed, hurt and angry. It seemed like things were a mess. But just like the friends on the road, I am not alone. Jesus is with me. He IS alive and if I let him into my life, like the friends let him into their home, he WILL set me on the road to JOY. It reminds me of Revelation 3:20 where we read, Here I am! I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears my voice and opens the door, I will come in and eat with him, and he with me.”
Tonight we were reminded of Jesus, our Saviour, our friend, the one who walks with us, right beside us ~ even when we are headed for a mess. When we experience him on the road let us do as the friends in the story: run with great joy, ready to share the news that Jesus IS ALIVE!