Two disciples unwittingly encounter Jesus Christ on the road to Emmaus, and learn a timeless lesson. A lesson emphasized by the Days of Unleavened Bread.
[Darris McNeely] One of the great stories of the Days of Unleavened Bread is told in Luke chapter 23 (chapter 24), where two disciples were walking along a road after Christ had been resurrected, and they were on the road to Emmaus, a village near Jerusalem, and they were discussing the things that were taking place. We pick up the story in Luke 24:13 Luke 24:13And, behold, two of them went that same day to a village called Emmaus, which was from Jerusalem about three score furlongs.
American King James Version×, where they were traveling toward this village of Emmaus and they were talking together about the things that had happened – meaning the arrest, the crucifixion, and the empty tomb that had been found, all concerning the life of Jesus Christ. And it says that “they conversed and reasoned. Then Jesus Himself drew near and went with them. But their eyes were restrained, so they did not know Him.” Two unnamed disciples here at this point – one is later named Cleopas – yet they do not understand or recognize that Jesus has joined in with them on this road as they were walking along the ancient road to Emmaus (Luke 24:13-18 Luke 24:13-18  And, behold, two of them went that same day to a village called Emmaus, which was from Jerusalem about three score furlongs.  And they talked together of all these things which had happened.  And it came to pass, that, while they communed together and reasoned, Jesus himself drew near, and went with them.  But their eyes were held that they should not know him.  And he said to them, What manner of communications are these that you have one to another, as you walk, and are sad?  And the one of them, whose name was Cleopas, answering said to him, Are you only a stranger in Jerusalem, and have not known the things which are come to pass there in these days?
American King James Version×).
If you look at this picture of this road here, of a typical road from that period of time in Israel – well made, even to be surviving to this day – but along a road like this through the country, they were walking when they were having an encounter with Jesus Christ. “He drew alongside them and He said, ‘What are you talking about with one another as you walk?’” He said. And in verse 18, “One of them answered, “‘Are you the only stranger in Jerusalem, and have you not known the things which happened there in these days?’” They were referring to the arrest, the trial, and the death of Jesus Christ. Christ played along with them. He said, “What things?” And then they went on to explain “the things concerning Jesus of Nazareth, a prophet mighty in word and deed before God and all the people.” They explained how He had been arrested, how He had been killed through crucifixion, and then they found the tomb to be empty on the morning after the resurrection – actually, the very same day that these disciples were talking, because three days had passed. Three full days since that event (Luke 24:18-24 Luke 24:18-24  And the one of them, whose name was Cleopas, answering said to him, Are you only a stranger in Jerusalem, and have not known the things which are come to pass there in these days?
 And he said to them, What things? And they said to him, Concerning Jesus of Nazareth, which was a prophet mighty in deed and word before God and all the people:
 And how the chief priests and our rulers delivered him to be condemned to death, and have crucified him.
 But we trusted that it had been he which should have redeemed Israel: and beside all this, to day is the third day since these things were done.
 Yes, and certain women also of our company made us astonished, which were early at the sepulcher;
 And when they found not his body, they came, saying, that they had also seen a vision of angels, which said that he was alive.
 And certain of them which were with us went to the sepulcher, and found it even so as the women had said: but him they saw not.
American King James Version×).
And Christ took them to task at one point, in verse 25. He said, “O foolish ones, and slow of heart to believe in all the things that the prophets have spoken! Should not the Christ have suffered these things and to enter into His glory?” And then Jesus began to explain to them, beginning with Moses – meaning all the way back in the earliest books of the Old Testament as we know it – and the Prophets, and “He explained to them in the Scriptures the things concerning Himself”. He read to them the psalms that predicted His life, death, and His resurrection. And this went on for some time as they continued to walk along. And they came to a point where they were near their village. And they were going and they indicated that they would have gone further. “But they constrained Christ, saying, ‘Abide with us, for it’s toward evening, the day is spent.’ And He went in to stay with them.” And so He turned aside onto a smaller path into a village – one very similar, probably, to what this one here is picturing, into a home with the disciples. And while He was with them, a meal was served, and bread was given. It was blessed and they broke it. And He gave it to them. A very interesting scene – similar, in one sense, to what had happened as Christ blessed the bread, and broke it, and gave it to His disciples on the night before His death. When He handed them the bread, their eyes were opened, they knew Him – and then Christ vanished from their sight (Luke 24:24-31 Luke 24:24-31  And certain of them which were with us went to the sepulcher, and found it even so as the women had said: but him they saw not.
 Then he said to them, O fools, and slow of heart to believe all that the prophets have spoken:
 Ought not Christ to have suffered these things, and to enter into his glory?
 And beginning at Moses and all the prophets, he expounded to them in all the scriptures the things concerning himself.
 And they drew near to the village, where they went: and he made as though he would have gone further.
 But they constrained him, saying, Abide with us: for it is toward evening, and the day is far spent. And he went in to tarry with them.
 And it came to pass, as he sat at meat with them, he took bread, and blessed it, and broke, and gave to them.
 And their eyes were opened, and they knew him; and he vanished out of their sight.
American King James Version×).
When He gave them the bread, then they understood who He was. And they said to one another, in verse 32, “Did not our heart burn within us while we walked and talked on the road, and while He opened the Scriptures to us?” The Scriptures, the word of God, had an emotional impact upon them. “They rose up that very hour. They then returned to Jerusalem, they found the other eleven disciples that were there and gathered, and they said, ‘The Lord is risen indeed, and He has appeared to Simon.’” He told them about the things that had happened and how He was known to them in the breaking of bread (Luke 24:32-34 Luke 24:32-34  And they said one to another, Did not our heart burn within us, while he talked with us by the way, and while he opened to us the scriptures?
 And they rose up the same hour, and returned to Jerusalem, and found the eleven gathered together, and them that were with them,
 Saying, The Lord is risen indeed, and has appeared to Simon.
American King James Version×).
It’s a remarkable story. They did not know who they were talking about until He broke the bread and gave it to them. What’s the lesson for us to understand as we are thinking about the Days of Unleavened Bread? And this experience where disciples were walking along, they did not recognize Christ and His teaching even, until He gave them this bread. We’ve talked about earlier Dailys in this series here during the Days of Unleavened Bread about Christ being the bread of life. We talked about John chapter 6, and about how Christ said, “Eat this bread and you will live forever” (John 6:32-59 John 6:32-59  Then Jesus said to them, Truly, truly, I say to you, Moses gave you not that bread from heaven; but my Father gives you the true bread from heaven.
 For the bread of God is he which comes down from heaven, and gives life to the world.
 Then said they to him, Lord, ever more give us this bread.
 And Jesus said to them, I am the bread of life: he that comes to me shall never hunger; and he that believes on me shall never thirst.
 But I said to you, That you also have seen me, and believe not.
 All that the Father gives me shall come to me; and him that comes to me I will in no wise cast out.
 For I came down from heaven, not to do my own will, but the will of him that sent me.
 And this is the Father's will which has sent me, that of all which he has given me I should lose nothing, but should raise it up again at the last day.
 And this is the will of him that sent me, that every one which sees the Son, and believes on him, may have everlasting life: and I will raise him up at the last day.
 The Jews then murmured at him, because he said, I am the bread which came down from heaven.
 And they said, Is not this Jesus, the son of Joseph, whose father and mother we know? how is it then that he said, I came down from heaven?
 Jesus therefore answered and said to them, Murmur not among yourselves.
 No man can come to me, except the Father which has sent me draw him: and I will raise him up at the last day.
 It is written in the prophets, And they shall be all taught of God. Every man therefore that has heard, and has learned of the Father, comes to me.
 Not that any man has seen the Father, save he which is of God, he has seen the Father.
 Truly, truly, I say to you, He that believes on me has everlasting life.
 I am that bread of life.
 Your fathers did eat manna in the wilderness, and are dead.
 This is the bread which comes down from heaven, that a man may eat thereof, and not die.
 I am the living bread which came down from heaven: if any man eat of this bread, he shall live for ever: and the bread that I will give is my flesh, which I will give for the life of the world.
 The Jews therefore strove among themselves, saying, How can this man give us his flesh to eat?
 Then Jesus said to them, Truly, truly, I say to you, Except you eat the flesh of the Son of man, and drink his blood, you have no life in you.
 Whoever eats my flesh, and drinks my blood, has eternal life; and I will raise him up at the last day.
 For my flesh is meat indeed, and my blood is drink indeed.
 He that eats my flesh, and drinks my blood, dwells in me, and I in him.
 As the living Father has sent me, and I live by the Father: so he that eats me, even he shall live by me.
 This is that bread which came down from heaven: not as your fathers did eat manna, and are dead: he that eats of this bread shall live for ever.
 These things said he in the synagogue, as he taught in Capernaum.
American King James Version×). And how the unleavened bread of sincerity and truth during the Days of Unleavened Bread actually shows Jesus Christ’s resurrected life living within us. When we look at this story and couple this road to Emmaus story into it, we learn a very important key to the Days of Unleavened Bread. The key to overcoming sin, the key to recognizing and putting sin from our lives, which these days do picture to us, come from having within us this bread of life. And Jesus Christ is that bread. If we eat of His body, He said, we will live forever.
We go to one other scripture that ties all this together. It’s in Romans chapter 8 and an eleven-verse passage, where the apostle Paul brings this point home, in terms of our freedom from sin, and the sin that can very easily take hold of us. He talks about, in verse 1 of Romans chapter 8, that, “There is no condemnation to those who are in Christ Jesus, who do not walk according to the flesh, but according to the spirit” (Romans 8:1 Romans 8:1There is therefore now no condemnation to them which are in Christ Jesus, who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit.
American King James Version×). And he goes on to talk about the fact that we live according to the spirit, and that those who live according to the spirit understand the things of the spirit. Verse 6, “For to be carnally minded is death, but to be spiritually minded is life” (Romans 8:6 Romans 8:6For to be carnally minded is death; but to be spiritually minded is life and peace.
American King James Version×). Spiritually minded brings us back to the understanding of the spiritual life of Jesus Christ, symbolized as the bread of life that should be within us. In verse 9, Paul writes, “You’re not in the flesh but in the spirit if indeed the spirit of God dwells in you. If anyone does not have the spirit of Christ, he is not His. And if Christ is in you, the body is dead because of sin. But the spirit is life because of righteousness” (Romans 8:9 Romans 8:9But you are not in the flesh, but in the Spirit, if so be that the Spirit of God dwell in you. Now if any man have not the Spirit of Christ, he is none of his.
American King James Version×). Now we’re getting to a real understand of the Days of Unleavened Bread, this festival, and what should be in our minds as we look at the story of the road to Emmaus and the disciples understanding who they were talking with, coming to that understanding as the bread of life was given to them.
Verse 11, Paul says, “If the spirit of Him who raised Jesus from the dead dwells in you, He who raised Christ from the dead will also give life to your mortal bodies through His spirit who dwells in you” (Romans 8:11 Romans 8:11But if the Spirit of him that raised up Jesus from the dead dwell in you, he that raised up Christ from the dead shall also quicken your mortal bodies by his Spirit that dwells in you.
American King James Version×). We need the help of God’s spirit, we need the life of Jesus Christ within us to resist sin, to overcome sin, and to put it out of our lives and no longer allow it to have a hold over our lives. If we understand Jesus Christ as the bread of life and we recognize Him in that understanding, and we allow Him to come and live His life within us, then we are on that very important experience typified by the disciples who encountered Jesus Christ after His resurrection on the road to Emmaus. And our road, our life, can be a whole lot lighter and a whole lot easier as we take upon the yoke of Christ into our lives and let His life live within us. Learn that from the Days of Unleavened Bread, and we are going to be walking quite well on the road to Emmaus.
That’s BT Daily. Join us next time.