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work, as expected, but His eye was always   didn’t say, “Look, it’s Me!” He wanted
        focused on His heavenly Father’s will.   their confidence to rest in God’s Word, so
        Most of those thirty years we know noth-  that when He left again, they would still
        ing about, but the Father who saw them   have an unshakeable resource to drive
        all said at the end of them, “I am well   away their doubts. He showed them how
        pleased” (3:22).                      Scripture, from beginning to end, foretold
        Two Pilgrims, Unknowingly With Christ   all these things. It was such a wonderful
        (24:16)                               conversation that they urged Him to stay
          Who would have thought that one day   the night with them when they reached
        those temple leaders would do everything   home. And even though they were the
        in their power to put this Boy to death?   hosts, He was the one who took the bread
        Who could imagine that the temple floors   at supper, broke it, and gave it to them,
        would ring out from the clattering coins   just as He had fed them with living Bread
        they had paid to His betrayer? Who could   along the way (4:4).
        envision that they would try Him at     And then He opened their eyes. They
        night – illegally – to coordinate their lies   recognized Him! In the next instant He
        against Him, threaten the governor into   was gone, but His words were not. With
        condemning Him, stir the crowd to choose   burning hearts, they rushed back to Jeru-
        a murderer instead of Him, and welcome   salem to tell others what they had learned
        the blood-guilt of His death upon them-  from Him.
        selves? But they did all that – on this same   Like both these sets of pilgrims, our path
        Passover week, some twenty years later.  is full of joys and sorrows. The secret of
          And in the aftermath of that awful   endurance is found in walking each day
        crime, Luke brings us back to this exact   with Christ. His presence and His Word
        same setting again: a pair of pilgrims trav-  make all the difference. Mary and Joseph
        eling home from Jerusalem after Passover.   were sad because they had taken His
        This time, their hearts were sorrowful   presence for granted and journeyed on
        right from the start. They knew that Jesus   without Him. But once they realized it,
        wasn’t with them. His recent death had   they stopped immediately and went back
        dashed all their hopes in pieces.     to where they had left Him. They dared
          So Cleopas and his companion hardly   not travel on alone.
        noticed the Stranger walking by them,   Cleopas and his companion were sad
        until He asked why they were sad and   because they had neglected Scripture.
        what they were discussing. They thought,   Their hearts had been slow to explore, un-
        Has he not come from Jerusalem? Doesn’t   derstand and believe all that the prophets
        everyone know what happened this      had written. But as they journeyed with
        weekend? They explained about Jesus of   Christ, He unfolded to them God’s Word.
        Nazareth, how He “was” a prophet, how   Their sluggish hearts began to warm,
        they once “trusted” in Him. They said it   then burn, then overflow, until they had
        all in the past tense, because He was gone   to share it with others. And it can be the
        now and so was their hope.            same for us. If we will travel together with
          But then the Stranger opened the Scrip-  Him, His presence will be our comfort,
        tures to them. And isn’t it interesting that   and His words will be the treasure and
        He didn’t reveal Himself right away? He   flame of our hearts.

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