By Mgr Anthony Abela
Opened eyes Lk 24:13-35 13 On that same day two of Jesus’s followers were going to a village named Emmaus, about seven miles from Jerusalem, 14 and they were talking to each other about all the things that had happened.
15 As they talked and discussed, Jesus himself drew near and walked along with them; 16 they saw him, but somehow did not recognise him.
17 Jesus said to them: “What are you talking about to each other, as you walk along?” They stood still, with sad faces.
18 One of them, named Cleopas, asked him: “Are you the only visitor in Jerusalem who doesn’t know the things that have been happening there these last few days?” 19 “What things?” he asked. “The things that happened to Jesus of Nazareth,” they answered. “This man was a prophet and was considered by God and by all the people to be powerful in everything he said and did.
20 Our chief priests and rulers handed him over to be sentenced to death, and he was crucified.
21 And we had hoped that he would be the one who was going to set Israel free! Besides all that, this is now the third day since it happened.
22 Some of the women of our group surprised us; they went at dawn to the tomb, 23 but could not find his body. They came back saying they had seen a vision of angels who told them that he is alive.
24 Some of our group went to the tomb and found it exactly as the women had said, but they did not see him.” 25 Then Jesus said to them: “How foolish you are, how slow you are to believe everything the prophets said!
26 Was it not necessary for the Messiah to suffer these things and then to enter his glory?” 27 And Jesus explained to them what was said about himself in all the Scriptures, beginning with the books of Moses and the writings of all the prophets.
28 As they came near the village to which they were going, Jesus acted as if he were going farther; 29 but they held him back, saying: “Stay with us; the day is almost over and it is getting dark.” So he went in to stay with them.
30 He sat down to eat with them, took the bread and said the blessing; then he broke the bread and gave it to them.
31 Then their eyes were opened and they recognised him, but he disappeared from their sight.
32 They said to each other: “Wasn’t it like a fire burning in us when he talked to us on the road and explained the Scriptures to us?” 33 They got up at once and went back to Jerusalem, where they found the 11 disciples gath ered together with the others 34 and saying: “The Lord is risen indeed! He has appeared to Simon!” 35 The two then explained to them what had happened on the road, and how they had recognised the Lord when he broke the bread.
Other readings: Acts 2:14, 22-23; Psalm 16:1-2, 5, 711; 1 Peter 1:17-2 LECTIO It is the third day after Jesus’s death. The tomb is open and Jesus’s body is missing. Despite Jesus’s promise that he would rise on the third day these two disciples seem to have given up hope and leave for Emmaus.
Jesus joins them but they do not recognise him. He explains how the Messiah’s death and Resurrection are essential to God’s purposes and have been revealed in the scriptures. It is only when he breaks bread with them that their eyes are opened.
They rush back to Jerusalem to tell the other disciples. They arrive to find that Jesus has also appeared to Simon.
So at this point in Luke’s account there are three eyewitnesses to the risen Christ. Many more will join them before Jesus ascends to heaven.
MEDITATIO Jesus revealed himself to these two disciples when they were discouraged. What can we learn from this?
What other lessons can you learn from this passage?
ORATIO Thank Jesus that he has paid the price for your sin through his death and Resurrection. Invite him to come alongside you and reveal more of himself to you.
Pray for those you know who are feeling discouraged or have doubts about their faith.
CONTEMPLATIO The two disciples walked about seven miles back to Jerusalem, mostly at night, to encourage their fellow disciples. Consider your response to the good news of the Gospel and how you can share it with others.
Lectio divina is an ancient tradition of reading and engaging with God’s Word. These outlines for the Sunday Gospel readings are written by Mgr Anthony Abela and published by Bible Society. They can be downloaded free in several languages from Biblesociety.org. uk/lectio.
© 2008 United Bible Societies. Bible text Good News Translation, second edition © 1992 American Bible Society, New York. Used with permission