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DISCOVERY OF THE FACTS
1. The Two Disciples Opening Their Hearts to the Risen Christ, vv. 13–24
Who were the two who were going to Emmaus? Was either of them an apostle (v. 33)? Were either of them very notable personages? Is there anything significant in that? Why were they going to Emmaus? Why does it appear very strange that they left Jerusalem just at that time (vv. 21–24)? Why did Jesus choose these two as the men to whom He should especially manifest Himself? Did He spend much time with them (vv. 15, 27, 29, 30)? What shall we say of Jesus’ going seven miles out of His way and spending several hours in one of the most eventful days of His life in comforting and recalling and instructing two ignorant, stupid, insignificant disciples? Would you be willing to do the same? What were they talking about? Was that a natural topic of conversation under the circumstances? What is the most natural topic of conversation for Christians? Is that the topic you most readily fall to talking about? What happened as they talked of Him? Does He always draw near as we talk of Him? (Matt. 18:20; v. 36.) Is He near now?
What sort of hearts did these men have as Jesus drew near? Is He always near loving and troubled hearts, though they are ignorant and unbelieving? Did these two altogether agree in their views? Why did not these men recognize Jesus at once? (Mark 16:12.) By what were their eyes holder (v. 25)? Why did He not make Himself fully known to them at once and settle their doubts that way? (vv. 25–27; John 4:48; 20:29.) Does Jesus ever appear to us in a way that we do not at once recognize Him? (Matt. 25:44, 45.) What question did He put to them? Did He not know? What then was the purpose in asking the question? Would you always be ready to have Jesus come alongside as you walk and talk with a friend and ask what communications are these that ye have one to another, as ye walk? What was the effect of Jesus’ question upon these two men? Why did it make them sad? Had those men any need to be sad that morning? Why were they sad (v. 25)? Whence does all our sadness arise? (Phil. 4:6; Ro. 8:32, etc.) What does their answer to Jesus’ first question imply? To a real Christian, what seems to be the question that men must always be talking about? How does Jesus further draw them out? Had these men any faith in Jesus of Nazareth still remaining? Did they have any courage left? What hope had they entertained regarding Jesus? What had become of that hope? Had the hope been well grounded? Was there any sufficient reason for giving it up? Why had they given it up (vv. 25–27)? Was His crucifixion any proof that He was not “He which should redeem Israel” (v. 26)? Why is it today that men often give up well grounded hopes? If we wish to keep our hopes from being wrested from us what should we do? (Acts 20:29, 30, 32; 2 Tim. 3:13–17.)
How must we study the Scriptures? (Ps. 119:18; compare v. 25.) From what did they suppose He was to redeem Israel? What better redemption did He bring? (Ps. 130:8; Rev. 5:9; 1 Peter 1:18, 19.) What was their reason for mentioning the fact that this was “the third day”? (Mark 9:31.) What further did these men tell Jesus? Did they believe the testimony of these women? Why not (v. 25)? What especial reason had one of them for believing the testimony of these women? (v. 18; compare John 19:25.) Are there ever nowadays men so determined in their unbelief that they will not receive the testimony of their own wives to what they have seen? What was the sole effect according to their own testimony of the women’s saying upon those men? What ought it to have been? Had the testimony of the women been tested? With what result? What was the one point at which the men stuck? Who were they like? (John 20:24, 25.) Were these the kind of men to have an hallucination that they had seen Jesus when they had not? If it was a hallucination, how long must it have lasted? Is that likely? What is evident from all they had to say as to where those two disciples ought to have been?
2. The Risen Christ Opening the Scriptures to the Two Disciples, vv. 25–32
Why did Jesus not meet and settle their unbelief by an immediate disclosure of His own identity? What did He do? With what sin did He charge them? Why did He so strongly rebuke their sins and folly? In what did their folly consist? Do you believe “all that the prophets have spoken”? What are you then (v. 25)? Where does Jesus put the man down that disbelieves anything the prophets have written? Are there any “fools” of that kind nowadays? Did Jesus say the whole trouble was with their heads? Where is the greatest trouble usually with skeptics? (John 7:17; 5:44; 8:47.) True wisdom consists, according to this verse, in believing what? What did He say that the Christ must do? Why must He suffer? (Mark 14:49; compare Ps. 22:6–9; Is. 53; John 3:14; Heb. 9:22.) What was the outcome of these sufferings? (1 Peter 1:2.) Who else besides the Christ must suffer? (2 Tim. 3:12; Acts 14:22.) What will be the outcome of these sufferings? (Ro. 8:17.) What did Jesus next do? Who had inspired these prophecies? Who was the subject of them? Would you liked to have heard Him expound them? Will He expound them for us? Where did He begin? How much of the Scripture did He take up? What did He show to be the one subject of Scripture? (John 5:39, 45–47.) How many of the prophets spoke of Him? (Acts 3:24.) What is the testimony of the prophets concerning Him? (Acts 10:43.) How do you account for the prophets writing concerning Him? (2 Peter 1:21.) Can you think of any passage He referred to in Moses? (Gen. 3:15; 22:18; 49:10; Deut. 18:15; Ex. 12, etc.) In the prophets? (Is. 7:14; 53; Mic. 5:2–4; Zech. 12:10, etc.) Did Jesus really desire to go further? Was it not deception on the part of Jesus to make as though He would have gone further? (Compare Mark 6:48.) Why did He not go further? Is there any lesson in all this for us? Was it much of a privilege to have Jesus abide in that home?
Can we have Jesus abide in our homes? (Rev. 3:20; John 14:23.) Would all professed Christians find it convenient to have Jesus abide with them and be present at their meals? Is this prayer, “Abide with us,” one a true Christian is likely to offer? What is the one thing recorded as occurring during Jesus’ stay at that home? If Jesus sits at our table what may we expect Him to do? Is there any way in which Jesus can sit at our table? (Matt. 25:35, 37, 40.) What happened as He broke their bread? How were their eyes opened just at that point? What was the result of their eyes being opened? What must happen if we are to “know Him”? How are our eyes to be opened? (John 7:17, 27, 32; 1 Cor. 2:14, 11; Acts 16:14; 1 John 5:20.) What happened as soon as they recognized Him? Why did Jesus vanish as soon as they knew Him? (John 20:17; 2 Cor. 5:16.) What was the first thought of these disciples as Jesus disappeared? What was it made the hearts of these disciples burn? If you want to make a Christian’s heart glow, what should you give him? (Jer. 20:9; 23:29.) What kind of a fire was it that the opened Word kindled in the hearts of these disciples? What had been the condition of their hearts before Jesus made them burn, while He talked with them by the way and opened to them the Scriptures? Did Jesus ever speak to you by the way and open to you the Scripture in such a way that your heart burned?
3. The Two Disciples Opening to the Others What the Risen Christ Had Opened to Them vv. 33–35
What did they do with the glad truth that had at last burst upon them? Did it take any courage on their part? Why did they not wait until morning? Is there any lesson here for us? Whom did they find in Jerusalem? Where was the twelfth? What had brought the eleven together? Were the entire eleven there? (John 20:24.) What were the first words with which they were greeted as they entered the room? How do you reconcile this with Mark 16:12, 13? (See vv. 37, 38, 41.) (Note the artlessness and truthfulness in every line of the picture.) Why was it the Lord had appeared especially to Simon? (c. 22:54–62; Mark 16:7.) To whom were all the appearances of Jesus to individuals made? (Note the especial appearance of the Lord: To Mary in her broken-heartedness; the women in their fear (Matt. 28:8, 9); the two as they were slipping away; Thomas in his unbelief; James in his rejection; Peter in his penitence and dejection; Paul in his enmity.) What was the reply of the two to the cry of the eleven that “The Lord is risen indeed”? Of what have we an illustration in this mutual relating of what they had learned? (Ro. 1:11, 12.) Why was it that Jesus was known in the breaking of bread?
CLASSIFICATION OF TEACHINGS
The central topic of all Scripture, 27; a prophet, mighty in deed and word, 19; the risen Son of God, 20, 25; an atoning Saviour, 26; despised, rejected and crucified by man, 20; seeks out those who most need Him, 15; goes out of His way and spends many hours of a most momentous day to reclaim two very unworthy, unspiritual, and insignificant backsliders, 13–15; draws near men as they talk of Him, 15; draws near hearts that are troubled, 15–17; appears in an unrecognized form, 16; notes what we talk about, 17; wishes us to unburden our hearts to Him, 17–19; rebukes our folly and unbelief, 25; instructs our ignorance, 26, 27; first inspires, then fulfills, then interprets prophecy, 27; enters glory through suffering, 26; compare Phil. 2:6, 10; desires to abide with us, but will not go further unless invited, 28, 29; blesses the bread when He sits at meat, 30; could be distinguished from every one else from the way He approached God in prayer, 35; spake as never man spake, 32; prayed as never man prayed, 35; recognized by the eyes He Himself opened, and by those alone, 31; opens the word and makes the heart to glow with faith and hope and joy, 32; stands in the midst when we talk of Him, 36; his tender compassion appears to those who especially need Him, 34; Jesus when known so fills the heart that men cannot but hasten to tell the good news to others, 33.
2. The Word
Its Great Interpreter:
Its absolute certainty:
Its most incredible statements fulfilled to the letter, 34.
Its matchless power:
To open blind eyes, 31; compare 27, 45; to make sad hearts glow with faith and hope and joy, 32; ignorance of the Word brings sadness, where knowledge of the Word brings gladness, 17; neglect of the Word opens the way for us to be robbed of hope, 21; doubt of the Word makes us fools, 25; doubt of the Word reveals an evil heart, 25.
What to do with the Word:
Read it all from the beginning, 27; believe it all from the beginning, 25; seek Christ in it all from the beginning, 27; get Christ to interpret it all from the beginning, 27.
3. The Two Disciples
Obscure, 13, 18; ignorant, 25; inspiritual, 22, 23, 25; unbelieving, 25; hopeless, 21; foolish, 25; backsliding, 13; Jesus loved them, 15–27; sought them, 15; taught them, 27; abode with them, 29; broke bread with them, 30; revealed Himself to them, 31; their singular journey, 13; their wisely chosen topic of conversation, 14; their deep sorrow, 17; their shattered hope, 21; their inexcusable ignorance, 25; their strange incredulity, 22–25; their commendable courage, 20; their partial faith, 19; their severe rebuke, 25; their gracious deliverance, 25–27; their opened eyes, 31; their burning hearts, 32; their eager desire to impart to others what Jesus Himself had imparted to them, 33; their full recital of their blessed experience, 35.
4. Faith and Unbelief
The hard fought battle between faith and unbelief in the heart even of disciples, 34–43; faith is begotten through the Word and confirmed by holy experience, 32, 31; unbelief is begotten through human reasoning and discredits one’s own experience, 38; faith opens the eyes, unbelief blinds them, 31; faith begets peace, unbelief begets terror, 36–38.