Re:Verse reading–Luke 24:1-12, 33-49 (day seven)
We all know the Great Commission. As Matthew records Jesus’s words in chapter 28 they are sweeping and grand. Jesus empowers the church to go and disciple all. It is beautiful, but it does not tell you what the disciples taught baptizing throngs of people. Surely, they taught Jesus Christ and Him crucified, but there was a highly specific reason Jesus went to the cross that must be conveyed.
Hear Luke’s version of the Great Commission: and that repentance for forgiveness of sins would be proclaimed in His name to all the nations, beginning from Jerusalem. Luke 24:47.
The content is to repent. The message is Christ crucified, our response is repentance. The power of the cross is that we can now be reoriented back to God. Our lives have strayed many miles away from God’s intention. Through the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ we can come back and be made right before our Heavenly Father once again. When we knell before God in confession the cross is glorified and all is made right in our world.
Re:Verse reading–Luke 24:1-12, 33-49 (day six)
They said to each other, “Didn’t our hearts burn within us while he talked to us on the road, while he opened to us the Scriptures?” Luke 24:32
Let me ask you, does your heart ever burn when you read the Bible? Do those words fill you with hope and anticipation? Do they move you to praise and thanksgiving? Those words, on that page, do they lead you to repentance or even joy? Do they burn? If not, it may help to ask. We aren’t meant to read the Scriptures as if they are only ink to paper, but rather the very words of God! Jesus was very willing to open the Scriptures to two grief stricken disciples, surely he is equally willing to open them for you.
So, get into the habit of asking. Ask Jesus to make your hearts burn.
Re:Verse reading–Luke 24:1-12, 33-49 (day five)
There are several times mentioned that the disciples were scared, troubled, afraid, and confused. However, the most terrifying thought comes at the end of this passage in verse 45 (Then He opened their minds to understand the Scriptures). These were not new converts or people mildly interested in Jesus and His teaching. These were the close followers, the ones who didn’t drift away, the ones who left their nets. Yet, they still had not understood the scriptures and words of Jesus, even after three years of watching, listening, and walking with Jesus.
If their understanding was lacking and needed supernatural help and encouragement, then our own faith and understanding probably does too. Each and every time we read the scriptures, hear a sermon, or pray, we must ask and beg the Lord through the Holy Spirit to help us understand and apply the truth(s) God would have us realize and practice. “A humble and prayerful spirit will find a thousand things in the Bible which the proud self-conceited student will utterly fail to discern”- J.C Ryle
Re:Verse reading–Luke 24:1-12, 33-49 (day four)
The angels spoke to the women at the tomb…”Remember how He spoke to you while He was still in Galilee,“ In verse 8 it says, “And they remembered His words.” On the road to Emmaus, Jesus spoke to the two men. Verse 27 says, “He explained to them the things concerning Himself in all the Scriptures.” These are exactly what the Holy Spirit does for us today. The Spirit causes us to recall the words of Jesus. With divine timing, we are reminded of things Jesus has said. The Spirit also explains the words of Scripture to us. Our eyes are opened and we see new truths in the pages of Scripture. Verse 45 says, “Then He opened their minds to understand the Scriptures.” Just as the followers of Christ received peace from the words of the angels and from Jesus, we have peace when hear from the Spirit. Thank you Lord for the gift of the Spirit and the truth of the Word.
Re:Verse reading- Luke 24:1-12, 33-49 (day three)
“They did not believe the women, because their words seemed to them like nonsense.” Did people back in the (ancient) day more readily believe claims of supernatural occurrences than people now? Is the Bible full of the accounts of gullible people? Thank God for the doubters. Peter and his peers-and later the wider Greek culture-had to burrow their way through doubt and skepticism in order to arrive at a faith strong enough to face suffering death. If you’re using your energy running away from doubts rather than facing the questions that doubt raises, how will you grow strong enough to stand?
Re:Verse reading–Luke 24:1-12, 33-49 (day two)
While they still could not believe it because of their joy and amazement, He said to them, “Have you anything here to eat?” vs. 41
I am constantly amazed at how much God cares about details, and how the writers of the Gospels were able to capture the small nuances that helped relate those details to us. Whether it be what the rich man was wearing, the kind of robe they placed upon Jesus and how it was divided, or simply that he was hungry after the resurrection-details matter. They matter because they are the small things that we can get our minds around. We may struggle with the the hows and whys of God’s plan, but we understand small symbols that add up to the tapestry God is weaving. Jesus knew that. That is why he told stories. That is why he used bread and wine. Jesus’ hunger was another sign that this walking miracle was alive. Re-read his stories. Marvel at the small things and how they point to the big ones.
Re:Verse reading–Luke 24:1-12, 33-49 (day one)
“Two men suddenly stood near them in dazzling clothing. . .’Why do you seek the living One among the dead? He is not here, but He has risen. Remember how He spoke to you while He was still in Galilee?’ “–v 4-5
It was a mild rebuke, an expression of the amazement and frustration angels often have with us. Why don’t humans listen to Christ? Why don’t we trust Him? These angels remembered exactly where Jesus was when He said the words. How could the disciples have missed it?
The Bible speaks often of the careful attention angels give humans. “We have become a spectacle to the world, and to angels, and to men.”–1 Corinthians 4:9. Part of God’s purpose in the church is to demonstrate His wisdom to “principalities and powers in heavenly places.“–Ephesians 3:10.
It is one more reason for me to be brave. At all moments, all choices and opportunities, angels are watching.
Re:Verse reading–Luke 23:1-27, 32-49 (day seven)
This crowd is nonstop. They begin by accusing Jesus with lies (v.2), and keep going through the whole chapter. They insisted Jesus deserved death even though the officials called him innocent (v.5, 18, 23). Vehemently they demanded Jesus pay, and when they didn’t get what they want they yelled louder. The whole scene is infuriating.
The unjust hate makes you want to take a stand for Jesus, but never engage the enraged. When people behave like animals they cannot reason. If you inject yourself you will be bitten. The best thing you can do is engage with Jesus like the thoughtful criminal at Jesus’s side. You will know much more peace in life if you will engage with Jesus instead of engaging the mob.
“It was now about the sixth hour, and there was darkness over the whole land…” Luke 23:44
It was the great day of the Lord fallen on Jesus’ shoulders. That’s what Luke wants us to see in the darkness (Amos 8:9). This was much more than the noble death of an innocent man, but the wrath of God poured out; it was judgement day. Not just anyone’s judgment day, but everyone’s, yours and mine, with Jesus receiving the full brunt of sin’s reward.The grace we receive has never been free. Jesus died in the darkness, so we could live in the light.
Re:Verse reading–Luke 23:1-27, 32-49 (day five) There is an interesting similarity and a dramatic contrast between Herod and the second thief on the cross. Both had heard the stories and testimonies of who Jesus was. Vs. 8 Now Herod was very glad when he saw Jesus; for he had wanted to see Him for a long time, because he had been hearing about Him and was hoping to see some sign performed by Him. Vs. 42 And he was saying, “Jesus, remember me when You come in Your kingdom!” The words about Jesus had differing effects on their hearts. One’s heart was hardened and prideful, while the other’s was open and humbled. Jesus’ response to each of these men was drastically different. Silence to Herod. Salvation and promise to the thief.
As we engage and interact with our friends, neighbors, and others, we must look for hearts ready to respond to the testimony and gospel of Jesus. When we encounter those ready to respond, may we point them to the power and promises of salvation in Jesus Christ.