Looking for the Living One in a Cemetery 24 1At the crack of dawn on Sunday, the women came to the tomb carrying the burial spices they had prepared. 2They found the entrance stone rolled back from the tomb, 3so they walked in. But once inside, they couldn’t find the body of the Master Jesus. 4They were puzzled, wondering what to make of this. Then, out of nowhere it seemed, two men, light cascading over them, stood there. 5The women were awestruck and bowed down in worship. The men said, “Why are you looking for the Living One in a cemetery? 6He is not here, but raised up. Remember how he told you when you were still back in Galilee 7that he had to be handed over to sinners, be killed on a cross, and in three days rise up?” 8Then they remembered Jesus’ words. 9They left the tomb and broke the news of all this to the Eleven and the rest. 10Mary Magdalene, Joanna, Mary the mother of James, and the other women with them kept telling these things to the apostles, 11but the apostles didn’t believe a word of it, thought they were making it all up. 12But Peter jumped to his feet and ran to the tomb. He stooped to look in and saw a few grave clothes, that’s all. He walked away puzzled, shaking his head. The Road to Emmaus 13That same day two of them were walking to the village Emmaus, about seven miles out of Jerusalem. 14They were deep in conversation, going over all these things that had happened. 15In the middle of their talk and questions, Jesus came up and walked along with them. 16But they were not able to recognize who he was. 17He asked, “What’s this you’re discussing so intently as you walk along?” They just stood there, long-faced, like they had lost their best friend. 18Then one of them, his name was Cleopas, said, “Are you the only one in Jerusalem who hasn’t heard what’s happened during the last few days?” 19He said, “What has happened?” They said, “The things that happened to Jesus the Nazarene. He was a man of God, a prophet, dynamic in work and word, blessed by both God and all the people. 20Then our high priests and leaders betrayed him, got him sentenced to death, and crucified him. 21And we had our hopes up that he was the One, the One about to deliver Israel. And it is now the third day since it happened. 22But now some of our women have completely confused us. Early this morning they were at the tomb 23and couldn’t find his body. They came back with the story that they had seen a vision of angels who said he was alive. 24Some of our friends went off to the tomb to check and found it empty just as the women said, but they didn’t see Jesus.” 25Then he said to them, “So thick–headed! So slow–hearted! Why can’t you simply believe all that the prophets said? 26Don’t you see that these things had to happen, that the Messiah had to suffer and only then enter into his glory?” 27Then he started at the beginning, with the Books of Moses, and went on through all the Prophets, pointing out everything in the Scriptures that referred to him. 28They came to the edge of the village where they were headed. He acted as if he were going on 29but they pressed him: “Stay and have supper with us. It’s nearly evening; the day is done.” So he went in with them. 30And here is what happened: He sat down at the table with them. Taking the bread, he blessed and broke and gave it to them. 31At that moment, open–eyed, wide–eyed, they recognized him. And then he disappeared. 32Back and forth they talked. “Didn’t we feel on fire as he conversed with us on the road, as he opened up the Scriptures for us?” A Ghost Doesn’t Have Muscle and Bone 33They didn’t waste a minute. They were up and on their way back to Jerusalem. They found the Eleven and their friends gathered together, 34talking away: “It’s really happened! The Master has been raised up—Simon saw him!” 35Then the two went over everything that happened on the road and how they recognized him when he broke the bread. 36While they were saying all this, Jesus appeared to them and said, “Peace be with you.” 37They thought they were seeing a ghost and were scared half to death. 38He continued with them, “Don’t be upset, and don’t let all these doubting questions take over. 39Look at my hands; look at my feet—it’s really me. Touch me. Look me over from head to toe. A ghost doesn’t have muscle and bone like this.” 40As he said this, he showed them his hands and feet. 41They still couldn’t believe what they were seeing. It was too much; it seemed too good to be true. He asked, “Do you have any food here?” 42They gave him a piece of leftover fish they had cooked. 43He took it and ate it right before their eyes. You’re the Witnesses 44Then he said, “Everything I told you while I was with you comes to this: All the things written about me in the Law of Moses, in the Prophets, and in the Psalms have to be fulfilled.” 45He went on to open their understanding of the Word of God, showing them how to read their Bibles this way. 46He said, “You can see now how it is written that the Messiah suffers, rises from the dead on the third day, 47and then a total life–change through the forgiveness of sins is proclaimed in his name to all nations—starting from here, from Jerusalem! 48You’re the first to hear and see it. You’re the witnesses. 49What comes next is very important: I am sending what my Father promised to you, so stay here in the city until he arrives, until you’re equipped with power from on high.” 50He then led them out of the city over to Bethany. Raising his hands he blessed them, 51and while blessing them, took his leave, being carried up to heaven. 52And they were on their knees, worshiping him. They returned to Jerusalem bursting with joy. 53They spent all their time in the Temple praising God. Yes.
The Message® / © 2002 Eugene H. Peterson About