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April 4, 2018, 8:10 AM

Heavenly Heart Burn



Grace and peace to you from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ.

“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. (Luke 24:13-17)

For three years Christ’s disciples had followed Him, learned from Him, and ministered with Him when suddenly this season came to an abrupt and crashing conclusion: Jesus had been viciously executed and His body thrown into the darkness of a tomb. All His disciples had forsaken Him and fled, making their way back to their respective homes. Two of those followers headed home to Emmaus, a village seven miles west of Jerusalem. As they began their journey, their walk toward the sunset was descriptive of their emotions. As they walked, they said to each other, “We were hoping that it was He who was going to redeem Israel” (24:21). But they had buried that hope in the damp, dark tomb.

Then suddenly the resurrected “Jesus Himself drew near and went with them,” but they “did not know Him” (24:15-16). After this incredible encounter, “their eyes were opened and they knew Him; and he vanished from their sight” (24:31). And their response? “Did not our hearts burn within us while He talked with us on the road and while He opened the Scriptures to us?” (24:32). O. S. Hawkins has stated that we pride ourselves on our brilliant minds: many know the nuances of theological truths. We pride ourselves on our benevolent hands: commendable social actions abound. But what we really need are burning hearts that only come when we listen to Him on the road. How can we acquire this heavenly heart burn? The answer is the same for us as it was for those two men walking to Emmaus. We must listen as Jesus speaks to us by His Spirit and His Word.

The disciples revealed their hearts were on fire because “He talked with us along the road.” Jesus did the talking! They poured out their disappointment, and then they listened. Their hearts didn’t burn when they talked. The two were still feeling sad and dejected. Likewise, many people today talk to Jesus in prayer, and they finish as disappointed and depressed as when they began because they have one-sided conversations. Their hearts were set on fire when they stopped talking and started listening to Jesus through His Spirit.

These two disciples’ cold hearts were set on fire when Jesus revealed the meaning of the Scriptures to them. The Bible is a sealed book until Jesus’ Spirit opens it to us. Those who do not know God can gain head knowledge about Him from the Bible, but they can never gain spiritual knowledge. As they journeyed together Jesus “expounded to them in all the Scriptures the things concerning Himself” (24:27). The word expound suggests translating something out of a foreign language, and the Bible is like a foreign language to anyone who does not walk in the spirit of Christ. We must listen as Jesus speaks to us through His Spirit and His Word.

Perhaps you are walking, as these two disciples were, with hopes dashed and dreams smashed. Stop. Look. Listen to Jesus’ Spirit through His Scriptures. And you too just might walk away with your own heart burning within you.

Let us join in prayer: Dear Lord, let me open my heart and will to your healing, cleansing power. Amen.

You are Loved!

Pastor Jason Stevens


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