The disciples were discouraged by Jesus’ crucifixion. They misunderstood the purpose behind His coming to earth. They expected a military leader to wrench the political reigns out of the hands of God’s enemies and make Israel 02 burning heart2the powerful nation it once was under Solomon. Of course it’s easy to understand how they would arrive at that conclusion. The Judges were all political and military deliverers. The Kings of both the Northern and Southern kingdoms were tasked with protecting and delivering the people from their enemies. After all it was Moses who delivered Israel from slavery in Egypt! But God had a different program. The Messianic deliverer would come with might and power to deliver His people but first he would come to suffer and die in order to deliver His people from their slavery to Sin. Jesus said that this is what the whole Bible is about!

After Jesus crucifixion two of His disciples were walking along the road to Emmaus. Unrecognized, Jesus joined them. They explained their disappointment that this Jesus who was crucified a few days earlier had not proven to be their great Messianic deliverer. Jesus then said to them, “O foolish ones, and slow of heart to believe all that the prophets have spoken! Was it not necessary that the Christ should suffer these things and enter into his glory? And beginning with Moses and all the Prophets, he interpreted to them in all the Scriptures the things concerning himself” (Luke 24:25-27). Jesus rebuked them because they didn’t “believe all that the prophets have spoken.” I don’t think it was a rebellious disbelief, but an ignorant disbelief. They didn’t believe because they didn’t “get it.” I like to think that’s the case with most of us. If we’d understand it, we would believe it. But when we miss the connection, when we fail to grasp Jesus in it all we can become “slow of heart” also.

The problem I have with this passage in Luke is that it doesn’t go on to tell us all the things that were written in the Old Testament that teach us about Jesus! What things? I’ve read the Old Testament several times and honestly I have trouble seeing how it’s all about Jesus! But Jesus tells me it is! If I can understand it, I’d surely believe it. As a matter of fact, I want to know it, understand it, and embrace it all. I want to believe. The two on the road to Emmaus wanted to also. As Jesus explained Himself from the Old Testament, they described their reaction in Luke 24:32. They said to each other, “Did not our hearts burn within us while he talked to us on the road, while he opened to us the Scriptures?” The Scriptures can become hard, burdensome, and difficult to read when we fail to see Jesus. But they come to life for us and move us from “slow hearts” to “burning hearts.”