In my last blog I talked about the journey to Emmaus! In particular, we illustrated this scripture…
13Now that very day two of them were going to a village seven miles from Jerusalem called Emmaus, 14and they were conversing about all the things that had occurred. 15And it happened that while they were conversing and debating, Jesus himself drew near and walked with them, 16 but their eyes were prevented from recognizing him. 17He asked them, “What are you discussing as you walk along?” They stopped, looking downcast. 18One of them, named Cleopas, said to him in reply, “Are you the only visitor to Jerusalem who does not know of the things that have taken place there in these days?” 19And he replied to them, “What sort of things?” They said to him, “The things that happened to Jesus the Nazarene, who was a prophet mighty in deed and word before God and all the people, 20how our chief priests and rulers both handed him over to a sentence of death and crucified him. 21 But we were hoping that he would be the one to redeem Israel; and besides all this, it is now the third day since this took place. 22 Some women from our group, however, have astounded us: they were at the tomb early in the morning 23and did not find his body; they came back and reported that they had indeed seen a vision of angels who announced that he was alive. 24 Then some of those with us went to the tomb and found things just as the women had described, but him they did not see.” 25 And he said to them, “Oh, how foolish you are! How slow of heart to believe all that the prophets spoke! 26Was it not necessary that the Messiah should suffer these things and enter into his glory?” 27Then beginning with Moses and all the prophets, he interpreted to them what referred to him in all the scriptures.
And then we paired it with this excellent artwork:
A lovely scene, right?
But of course, this was only the first part of the scene! The scripture continues on…
28As they approached the village to which they were going, he gave the impression that he was going on farther. 29But they urged him, “Stay with us, for it is nearly evening and the day is almost over.” So he went in to stay with them. 30And it happened that, while he was with them at table, he took bread, said the blessing, broke it, and gave it to them. 31With that their eyes were opened and they recognized him, but he vanished from their sight. 32Then they said to each other, “Were not our hearts burning [within us] while he spoke to us on the way and opened the scriptures to us?” 33So they set out at once and returned to Jerusalem where they found gathered together the eleven and those with them 34who were saying, “The Lord has truly been raised and has appeared to Simon!” 35Then the two recounted what had taken place on the way and how he was made known to them in the breaking of the bread.
Isn’t that amazing? They see Him as He is breaking the bread!
And so, when I stumbled across this painting of the Supper at Emmaus, I fell in love.
Isn’t it beautiful?
The two disciples have just recognized Jesus in the breaking of the bread. One of the disciples grabs on to the table, surprised, while the other one is visibly startled.
Now, take a look at Jesus. He is garbed in the burial clothes that He is typically depicted with in pictures of the Resurrection. So, as far as biblical accuracy goes, this picture would not be a very historically accurate depiction of the scene. After all, if the disciples had seen a man walking in burial clothes, they probably wouldn’t have reacted the way they did.
And yet, as a sort of allegorical depiction of the scene, it is a beautiful one. It reminds us that Christ is with us, not just in the stories of the bible, but as the Resurrected Christ who has saved us all from death.
It reminds us that Christ is continually reaching out and meeting with us as we break bread in the form of the Eucharist.
And finally, it is a reminder that Christ is with us until the end of time… just as He promised.