"And it happened that while they were conversing and debating, Jesus himself drew near and walked with them,but their eyes were prevented from recognizing him. He asked them, 'What are you discussing as you walk along?' They stopped, looking downcast. One 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?' And 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,"...Remember, I've got the teaching authority of "some guy with a blog:" and I left out quite a bit of Luke 24:13-35.
..." '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. Some women from our group, however, have astounded us: they were at the tomb early in the morning and 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. 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.' And he said to them, 'Oh, how foolish you are! How slow of heart to believe all that the prophets spoke! Was it not necessary that the Messiah should suffer 8 these things and enter into his glory?' Then beginning with Moses and all the prophets, he interpreted to them what referred to him in all the scriptures."
(Luke 24:15-19, 21-27) (emphasis mine)
I could, with 20-20 hindsight, drawing on almost two millennia of accumulated wisdom, make fun of those fellows. Ideally, maybe they'd have realized that some women coming back with a wild story about an empty tomb and angels - verifiable details of which, on investigation, checked out - might mean that He's alive.
On the other hand, in their position, I might not have done any better. Jesus had been tortured to death, publicly, and His death verified by Roman troops. Experience tells us that when someone is dead - the person stays that way.
Jesus had made it clear Who he was. (John 8:23-30, John 8:58, John 18:4-8) Even so, I suspect that it was hard to believe that the same I AM who had spoken with Moses had been walking around Jerusalem during that Passover. (Exodus 3:13-14)
Even now, after almost two thousand years of saints, occasionally-botched management, and verified miracles - some folks still seem to have a hard time believing that Jesus really is I AM. I've been over that before. (May 6, 2011)
Putting "occasionally-botched management" in as an implied reason for believing that the Catholic Church is getting help - that's another topic. (January 13, 2011)
It's getting late, but there's something else important in that passage from Luke. It's when my Lord "vanished from their sight." (Luke 24:31) It was when he broke the bread, and gave it to them.
Again, I've got all the authority of "some guy with a blog:" but this is a paraphrase of what our parish priest said this morning. Jesus "vanished from their sight" right after he broke bread and gave the bread to him. It's a fairly graphic way of indicating where we're supposed to look for Him.
Like I've said before, Mass is a big deal for Catholics. For good reason:
"...we'll be celebrating Mass that day at Our Lady of the Angels Church, here in Sauk Centre.Yeah: I'd say that's a big deal.
"Which means that, as I understand it, we'll be at the Mass at St. Peter's Square, too, and the Passover meal we call the Last Supper, and Golgotha - in a way. (Catechism, 1326, 1330, 1545)"
(April 23, 2011)
- "Day Two of a Novena I'm Not Doing"
(April 23, 2011)
- "Celebrating Mass, Flossing My Teeth"
(October 20, 2010)
- "Sunday Obligation, Recovering From Surgery, Wild Weather, and Martha"
(July 17, 2010)
- "Really 'Spiritual' Experiences: Those are Okay"
(April 22, 2010)
- "Catholics Invented Transubstantiation Like Newton Invented Gravity"
(September 21, 2009)