What God is Saying:

"Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age." Matthew 28:19-20

Sunday, March 18, 2012

Easter Devotion: Open Our Eyes (4th Sunday of Lent)

Now that same day two of them were going to a village called Emmaus, about seven miles from Jerusalem. They were talking with each other about everything that had happened.
As they talked and discussed these things with each other, Jesus himself came up and walked along with them; but they were kept from recognizing him.
He asked them, "What are you discussing together as you walk along?" 
They stood still, their faces downcast. One of them, named Cleopas, asked him, "Are you only a visitor to Jerusalem and do not know the things that have happened there in these days?"
"What things?" he asked. 
"About Jesus of Nazareth," they replied. "He was a prophet, powerful in word and deed before God and all the people. The chief priests and our rulers handed him over to be sentenced to death, and they crucified him; but we had hoped that he was the one who was going to redeem Israel. And what is more, it is the third day since all this took place.
In addition, some of our women amazed us. They went to the tomb early this morning
but didn't find his body. They came and told us that they had seen a vision of angels, who said he was alive. Then some of our companions went to the tomb and found it just as the women had said, but him they did not see."
He said to them, "How foolish you are, and how slow of heart to believe all that the prophets have spoken! Did not the Christ have to suffer these things and then enter his glory?"
And beginning with Moses and all the Prophets, he explained to them what was said in all the Scriptures concerning himself.
As they approached the village to which they were going, Jesus acted as if he were going farther.
But they urged him strongly, "Stay with us, for it is nearly evening; the day is almost over." So he went in to stay with them.
When he was at the table with them, he took bread, gave thanks, broke it and began to give it to them.
Then their eyes were opened and they recognized him, and he disappeared from their sight.
They asked each other, "Were not our hearts burning within us while he talked with us on the road and opened the Scriptures to us?"  Luke 24:13-32

Did you know that the forty days of Lent do not include the Sundays? Can you guess why that is? Lent is a time of thinking about Jesus' death. Every Sunday of the year, however, is a celebration of Jesus' resurrection. For that reason, we will spend each of the next three Sundays during Lent looking at one of the resurrection stories.


Questions:
- Who are the two men walking on the road to Emmaus?
- Who joins them? Do they recognize Him?
- How do the two men describe Jesus and what had they hoped He would do for Israel?
- What did Jesus tell them?
- When did they finally recognize Jesus?
- What do you think they meant when they said: "Were not our hearts burning within us?"

Thoughts
These two men are examples of they typical followers of Jesus. They understood Him to be a great prophet. They had high hopes that Jesus would redeem Israel, but most of them did not see Jesus for who He really was. It wasn't until God "opened their eyes" that they recognized Him. All of us are like that too. God has to "open our eyes" - help us understand who He is, before we can recognize Him as our Savior. We can pray daily that God will continue to open our eyes to Him. We can also pray that He will open the eyes of people around the world so millions will come to a saving knowledge of Him.

Prayer
Father God, we thank You that You have given us our own "road to Emmaus" experience with You. We thank You that You daily open our eyes and help us see You and understand who You are. We pray the same for people all over the world, that they will see Jesus for who He really is and will accept Him as their Lord and Savior. We love You Jesus!

Song: Open The Eyes of My Heart Lord


Open the eyes of my heart, Lord
Open the eyes of my heart
I want to see You
I want to see You

Open the eyes of my heart, Lord
Open the eyes of my heart
I want to see You
I want to see You

To see You high and lifted up
Shinin' in the light of Your glory
Pour out Your power and love
As we sing holy, holy, holy



Here is a link to the song sung by Mercy Me: Open the Eyes

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