Luke 24:15 NLT
'As they talked and discussed these things, Jesus himself suddenly came and began walking with them.'
While it is easy to understand the phrase, Jesus “came near and went with them” (NRSV), what does it mean some 2,000 years on? For each of us this is the hope and desire, that Jesus might walk with us. Much of my preaching was about individuals drawing near to Jesus and becoming God’s friend.
Yet friendship can be of the sort I have with my mate Ken in Dallas. I have spent times with Ken, yet in recent years our different callings have meant that we have spent very little real time together. I know he’s my friend as I am his, yet we are not in close proximity. There’s a danger that friendship with Jesus can become like this. I become a friend of Jesus separated by some great distance. I know who he is and I know I am his and he is my friend. Yet face-to-face time is limited, and distance prevents me from consulting him on my understanding of my world.
Two confused, perhaps angry disciples, begin the long walk home. This Jesus who they’d known wants to walk with them, yet they do not recognise him. Still, their innate hospitality allows them to invite Jesus to accompany them. The point is that Jesus is not about some distant act upon a cross in Palestine, nor simply a means to securing our eternal destination. Jesus is about interaction in the now with you and with me. The fact is, Jesus is present today, in as much reality as Jesus was 2,000 years ago. That’s the point of the resurrection.
These two disciples had all the pieces to the jigsaw, yet couldn’t put the whole picture together. Here they describe the resurrection, without perhaps completely believing the testimony of the women who’d brought this strange yet significant report of an empty tomb and angelic message that Jesus was alive. We often struggle in a secularised age of reason with the fact that Jesus is alive. Jesus is present and can draw alongside us. However, we must make the invitation and before that settle in our hearts how the risen One might walk with us.
QUESTION: How does the risen Jesus want to walk alongside you?
PRAYER: Lord Jesus, thank you that by your Spirit you accompany us on our journey through life.