By Charles Wages
“And they said one to another, ‘Did not our hearts burn within us, while He talked with us by the way, and while He opened to us the Scriptures?'” (Luke 24:32)
Eating too much of the world’s food might give us “heartburn,” but partaking of the spiritual food of God’s Word makes our hearts to glow with warmth. The Emmaus disciples experienced this when they walked and talked with the Lord Jesus after His resurrection.
Let’s consider together some very important truths associated with this wonderful passage from Luke, chapter 24.
The Method Used by the Lord
The risen Christ knew what was needed to open the eyes of these disciples (vs. 31), as well as what was needed to open their understanding (vs. 45); and He certainly knew how to go about accomplishing this.
He Talked with Them
The Lord Jesus talked to them about things they were familiar with, beginning with Moses (vs. 27) and then proceeding to the prophets. However, He was quick to “… expound unto them in all the Scriptures the things concerning Himself.” He not only talked to them, but He opened the Scriptures in order to really help them. First, their “understanding” needed to be opened, in order for them to understand the Scriptures.
“Then opened He their understanding that they might understand the Scriptures.” (vs. 45)
He also helped them to really know Him by the fact that,
He Walked with Them
“And they drew nigh unto the village, whither they went: and He made as though He would have gone further.”
He walked with them and talked with them even though they did not fully recognize Him. Later on, after they were fully aware that He was the risen Christ, after He had eaten with them and expounded the Scriptures, we are told that
“He led them out as far as to Bethany, and He lifted up His hands, and blessed them.” (vs. 50)
The Message Used by the Lord
It has already been stressed that the Lord Jesus used the Old Testament Scriptures to show the wondering, wandering disciples that He was the prophesied One. This startling message was gotten across to them and they exclaimed,
“The Lord is risen indeed, and hath appeared to Simon.” (vs. 34)
They now understood that He was not just the crucified Christ, but the risen Christ. This message led to a personal testimony that must have warmed the hearts of the other disciples. We are told that they,
“… told what things were done in the way, and how He was known of them in breaking of bread.” (vs. 35)
What were the results of our Lord’s way of dealing with those whom He loved? Well, it stirred them to action for one thing. Verse 33 tells us that,
“… they rose up the same hour and returned to Jerusalem …”
Secondly, we are told that they returned to Jerusalem. It is significant that they returned to Jerusalem. They returned right where their enemies were the strongest! We are also told they found the eleven gathered together. Trust enjoins us to desire to be with other believers and share the blessings of revealed Truth.
Yes, this is a heart-warming account of believers whose hearts were burning within them. This warmth was from within. What a contrast to an earlier experience of Peter where we are told he sat down among unbelievers and warmed himself at the fire they had kindled (Luke 22:55). This temporary warming was from without, from the world’s fires. God speaks to our hearts. He wants to kindle a fire within us by teaching us His Word. This creates a desire to serve Him, to testify of His wonderful Person and purpose. When the Lord Jesus is the center of our lives, when He rules in our hearts, it is truly a heart-warming experience.