The Resurrection of Jesus
1Very early that Sunday morning, the women made their way to the tomb, carrying the spices they had prepared. 10Among them were Mary Magdalene, Joanna, and Jesus’ mother Mary. # 24:1 For the sake of the English narrative, the information found in v. 10 is placed here. 2Arriving at the tomb they discovered that the huge stone covering the entrance had been rolled aside, 3so they went in to look. But the tomb was empty. The body of Jesus was gone!
4They stood there, stunned and perplexed. Suddenly, two men appeared above them in dazzling white robes shining like lightning. # 24:4 “Above them” is found only in the Aramaic text. 5Terrified, the women fell to the ground on their faces.
The men in white said to them, “Why would you look for the Living One # 24:5 The Aramaic text is literally “the Life.” in a tomb? He is not here, for he has risen! 6Have you forgotten what he said to you while he was still in Galilee: 7‘The destiny of the Son of Man is to be handed over to sinful men, to be nailed to a cross, and on the third day to rise again’?”
8All at once they remembered his words. 9Leaving the tomb, they went to break the news to the Eleven and to all the others of what they had seen and heard. # 24:9 For the sake of the English narrative, the information of v. 10 is included in v. 1.
11When the disciples heard the testimony of the women, it made no sense, and they were unable to believe what they heard. 12But Peter jumped up and ran the entire distance to the tomb to see for himself. Stooping down, he looked inside and discovered it was empty! There was only the linen sheet lying there. Staggered by this, he walked away, wondering what it meant.
Jesus Walks to Emmaus
13Later that same day, two of Jesus’ disciples were walking from Jerusalem to Emmaus, # 24:13 The Greek text states that the distance from Jerusalem to Emmaus was sixty stadia = seven miles in the majority of manuscripts. However some patristic writers such as Eusebius, Sozomen, and Jerome, as well as a few Greek manuscripts read one hundred sixty stadia which would be seventeen miles. There is an ancient site in modern-day Israel identified as Hamat (Emmaus) that is seventeen miles from Jerusalem and is known for its hot (burning) springs. The word Emmaus is taken from a Hebrew root that means “the burning place.” a journey of about seventeen miles. 14-15They were in the midst of a discussion about all the events of the last few days when Jesus walked up and accompanied them in their journey. 16They were unaware that it was actually Jesus walking alongside them, for God prevented them from recognizing him.
17-18Jesus said to them, “You seem to be in a deep discussion about something. What are you talking about, so sad and gloomy?”
They stopped, and the one named Cleopas # 24:17–18 Cleopas means “from a renowned father.” Some scholars believe this could be the Clopas mentioned in John 19:25. answered, “Haven’t you heard? Are you the only one in Jerusalem unaware of the things that have happened over the last few days?”
19Jesus asked, “What things?”
“The things about Jesus, the man from Nazareth,” they replied. “He was a mighty prophet of God who performed miracles and wonders. His words were powerful and he had great favor with God and the people. 20-21But three days ago the high priest and the rulers of the people sentenced him to death and had him crucified. We had all hoped that he was the one who would redeem and rescue Israel. 22Early this morning, some of the women informed us of something amazing. 23They said they went to the tomb and found it empty. They claimed two angels appeared and told them that Jesus is now alive. 24Some of us went to see for ourselves and found the tomb exactly as the women had said. But no one has seen him.”
25Jesus said to them, “Why are you so thick-headed? Why do you find it so hard to believe every word the prophets have spoken? 26Wasn’t it necessary for the Messiah to experience all these sufferings and afterward to enter into his glory?”
27And beginning with Moses and all the prophets he carefully unveiled to them the revelation of himself throughout the Scriptures.
28As they approached the village, Jesus walked on ahead, telling them he was going on to a distant place. 29They urged him to remain there with them and pleaded, “Stay with us. It will be dark soon.” So Jesus went with them into the village.
30Joining them at the table for supper, he took bread and blessed it and broke it, then gave it to them. 31All at once their eyes were opened and they realized he was Jesus! Then suddenly, in a flash, Jesus vanished from before their eyes!
32Stunned, they looked at each other and said, “Why didn’t we recognize him? Didn’t our hearts burn with the flames of holy passion # 24:32 As translated from the Greek text. The Aramaic manuscript reads, “Were not our hearts dull as he taught us?” This is also the translation of the Latin text. The Aramaic words for “burning” and “dull” are almost identical. while we walked beside him? He unveiled for us such profound revelation from the Scriptures!”
33They left at once and hurried back to Jerusalem to tell the other disciples. When they found the Eleven and the other disciples all together, 34they overheard them saying, “It’s really true! The Lord has risen from the dead. He even appeared to Peter!” 35Then the two disciples told the others what had happened to them on the road to Emmaus and how Jesus had unveiled himself in the breaking of bread. # 24:35 Luke’s Gospel begins and ends with similar stories. In the beginning of Jesus’ life we have the story of his parents walking off from Jerusalem and leaving him in the temple (Luke 2:41–52), unaware that they had left Jesus behind. Luke ends with the story of Jesus walking alongside two disciples and they weren’t aware of who was walking next to them. Both accounts were after the Feast. In both stories they were leaving Jerusalem. And both the Jewish scholars in the temple (Luke 2) and the two Emmaus road disciples (Luke 24) were astounded at what Jesus taught them.
Jesus Appears to the Disciples
36-37While they were still discussing all of this, Jesus suddenly appeared right in front of their eyes! Startled and terrified, the disciples were convinced they were seeing a ghost. Standing there among them he said, “Be at peace. I am the living God. Don’t be afraid. # 24:36–37 The words “I am the living God. Don’t be afraid” are only found in the Aramaic text and the Latin Vulgate. The Greek text omits this sentence. 38Why are you so frightened? Don’t let doubt enter your hearts. 39See my pierced hands and feet. See for yourselves, it is I, standing here alive. Touch me and know that my wounds are real. A spirit does not have a body of flesh and bone as you see that I have.” 40Then he showed them his pierced hands and feet and let them touch his wounds. # 24:40 Verse 40 is missing in some manuscripts.
41The disciples were ecstatic, yet dumbfounded, unable to fully comprehend it.
Knowing that they were still wondering if he was real, Jesus said, “Here, let me show you. Give me something to eat.”
42-43They handed him a piece of broiled fish and some honeycomb. And they watched him eat.
44Then he said to them, “Don’t you remember the words that I spoke to you when I was still with you? I told you that I would fulfill everything written about me, including all the prophecies from the law of Moses through the Psalms and the writings of the prophets.” # 24:44 The Law, the prophets, and the “writings” make up the whole Old Testament (or Tanakh: an acronym of the first Hebrew letter from Torah [the five books of Moses], Nevi’im [the prophets and historical books], and Ketuvim [the writings]).
45He supernaturally unlocked their understanding to receive the revelation of the Scriptures, 46and said to them, “Everything that has happened fulfills what the Scriptures prophesied of me. The Messiah was destined to suffer and rise from the dead on the third day. # 24:46 There is not an explicit reference to the Messiah dying and rising on the third day. This must have been on the symbolic level of interpreting Scripture. May Jesus open our understanding to the Bible to see it on this level. 47Now you must go into all the nations and preach repentance # 24:47 The Aramaic reads “grace” or “conversion.” and forgiveness of sins so that they will turn to me. Start right here in Jerusalem, 48for you are my witnesses and have seen for yourselves all that has transpired. 49I will send the fulfillment of the Father’s promise # 24:49 The Aramaic reads “the kingdom” or “rule.” The Father’s promise would be the coming of the Holy Spirit to live in them and empower them. See Acts 2:1–12. to you, so stay here in the city until you are clothed with the mighty power of heaven.”
The Ascension of Jesus
50Jesus led his disciples out to Bethany. He lifted his hands over them and blessed them in his love. 51While he was still speaking words of love and blessing, he floated off the ground into the sky, ascending into heaven before their very eyes! 52And all they could do was worship him.
Overwhelmed and ecstatic with joy, they made their way back to Jerusalem. 53Every day they went to the temple, to praise and worship God. # 24:53 So ends the glorious Gospel of Luke. The one who walked with his friends on the way to Emmaus wants to walk with us. May we never walk in sadness or unbelief, for Jesus has risen from the grave and lives victorious as the living God in resurrection life! May you pause here and rejoice, believing that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of the living God and the only one who will bring us to the Father. Trust in him alone to save you, and you will spend eternity with him.