The good news of God’s Kingdom is “that Christ died for our sins in accordance with the Scriptures, that he was buried, that he was raised on the third day in accordance with the Scriptures, and that he appeared” (1Corinthians 15:3-5), and among the first to see him were two disciples walking away from Jerusalem, away from the revolution that never materialized, away from the Kingdom come, to a little village called Emmaus. They knew enough to be confused and disheartened. The gifted, compassionate, compelling King of kings was put down by the rulers of Israel and crucified by Rome. Now, three days later, rumor of his rising notwithstanding, they were dejected and disheartened, wondering if good would ever win in this world.
Then, “Jesus himself drew near and went with them” (Luke 24:15). They were blind to a dead man risen in glory, so Jesus opened the Scriptures to open their eyes. Perhaps he began in the beginning, when God cursed the serpent, “he shall bruise your head, and you shall bruise his heel” (Genesis 3:15), explaining that the cross that bruised the heel of the Son dealt a deathly blow to Satan. Certainly, he spoke of the first Passover in Egypt, when the Jewish slaves painted lamb’s blood on their door frames, and God said “when I see the blood, I will pass over you, and no plague will befall you to destroy you” (Genesis 12:13). He read to them from the Psalms, “You are my Son; today I have begotten you. Ask of me, and I will make the nations your heritage, and the ends of the earth your possession” (Psalm 22:7-8); and from the prophets, “He was pierced for our transgressions; he was crushed for our iniquities; upon him was the chastisement that brought us peace, and with his wounds we are healed” (Isaiah 53:5). Page after page, the Old explained the New, and the disciples’ eyes were opened and they saw their Savior, and they believed, “The Lord has risen indeed” (Luke 24:34). Good has triumphed because the King is alive, and they turned around and hustled back to Jerusalem, to the revolution.
My God and Savior, You took my sins to Your grave, received the wrath I deserved, and rose to give me hope of a future in God’s Kingdom. Death need no longer be the end of hope, but only a pitstop into eternity. That gives me so much confidence, to live well and right, to follow You no matter, to stand with those who call You King.
Thank You for opening my eyes, showing me the truth and Your grace that causes me to repent, to turn around and join the revolution of grace which triumphs over evil and ushers in an eternal Kingdom of peace and righteousness. Shape me into a fit citizen of Your Kingdom.