Luke 24:13–35, John 20:1–18, John 21:2–14
Poor Cleopas. Literally walking with Jesus and he didn’t have a clue. Luke’s choice of words makes it pretty clear. Cleopas couldn’t have been that oblivious. He had to have been prevented from recognizing Jesus. That makes perfect sense from Luke’s perspective.
What is it about this resurrected Jesus that is so hard to see?
Was Jesus hanging around at the tomb, and only Mary Magdalene saw him? And she saw him as a gardener? If Jesus really was there the whole time, the disciples were painfully oblivious. Mary, probably hanging back away from the other disciples, sees a gardener. She was distraught. She almost missed it.
John tells another story about the resurrected Jesus. It echoes the original calling at the Sea of Galilee. This time though it is a calling beyond the grave to a truly new life. You would think that the setting would trigger their collective memories, but it was only John with whom it clicked. Only John. Yet, in many ways, Peter is the star (second to Jesus) of the story. Peter didn’t get it.
Why bring this up? Yesterday, we talked about identifying when the Holy Spirit is providing us some sort of nudge (whether go or stop) and we miss it. Here we have a case in point of people who knew Jesus really well and they missed it. They missed Jesus!
“When did we see you a stranger and take you in, or without clothes and clothe you? When did we see you sick, or in prison, and visit you?’ “And the King will answer them, ‘Truly I tell you, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me.’” (Matthew 25:38–40)
1) What decisions have you made based on how you see Jesus? As you look back, were they good/bad/valid ways to look at Jesus?
2) Why is it important to acknowledged that we don’t always see Jesus?
3) We could fall back on Luke’s reasoning for them not seeing Jesus (they were made to). However, that is only Luke’s take regarding Cleopas and his accompanying disciple. What are other possible reasons why others didn’t see Jesus in front of them? What insight does that give us about our lives?