Ideas for sermon preparation on Luke 24 13-35
See also PostScript - Comments, prayers, questions and discussion on the week's news.
- In our culture, there are lots of ways to interact with people without actually seeing them. We can email them, send a text, share messages in a WhatsApp group, ’like’ something posted on Facebook or Instagram, and so on.
- Not to devalue these products, but we are made for human interaction. The disciples understand who Jesus is after hearing him share stories about himself from the Scriptures, and watching him break bread in their home. Does this raise questions for us, not only about the depth of our own relationships, but also whether we spend (enough) time allowing Jesus to come alongside us?
- Driven as the two disciples were by very different emotions, we cannot fail to notice the contrast between the speed of the journey from Jerusalem to Emmaus, and that of the journey back to tell of the meeting with the risen Jesus. It can be hard to get ourselves moving when we are weighed down with worries and disappointments. The Church has never pretended such stresses are not real, but it has always looked for ways to help people meet with Jesus personally – e.g. through prayer. If we are struggling and finding our path difficult, are there ways we can encounter Jesus and allow him to meet us in – and transform – our situation?
- Jesus explains his death and resurrection to the two disciples by ‘beginning with Moses and all the prophets’. Are we familiar with the Old Testament and how it points to the coming Messiah? John 3.14 is but one example of how Jesus saw his own ministry foreshadowed in the Jewish Scriptures (see Numbers 21.9). We can be daunted by the Old Testament, but Jesus saw himself and his work in its pages. As his followers, we have an obligation to explore it, whether through commentaries, church study groups or our own personal reading.
- Although the two disciples engage Jesus in conversation, it is not a ‘head to head’ conversation; it is a walking alongside. A talking and sharing in which all are, in a sense, equal – all listening, speaking, learning, discovering. It is also ‘of (or in) the moment’ – it is now. We can be good at looking back, seeing what God has done in our lives. We can also be good at looking forward, thinking about and praying for how our life might be with God. What about now? The breaking of bread – whether understood Eucharistically or domestically (or both – for both have a place in the story) – is a now moment. Do we spend enough time living in the now, talking about what God is doing in our lives right now? Or are we wary of talking about it?
You may also find this week's All-age conversation useful
You could finish your sermon with a call to action for everyone this week - see the Live your faith idea.
KEY: icon indicates ways to connect faith with everyday life