Pastor Jake Esperanza
“Were not our hearts burning within us while he talked with us on the road and opened the Scriptures to us?”
** heart, Greek word KARDIA. In the NT, KARDIA is used only figuratively. It is referred to as the seat of desires, feelings, emotions, will, reasons, affections, passions, i.e., the mind or "heart". It is the seat of unbelief (Heb 3:12) but also of faith (Ac 15:9). It is where darkness reigns (Ro 1:21) but also where the glory of God shines (2Co 4:6). It is where the evil spirits are squattering (Lk 11:24-26) but it also where Jesus seeks to dwell (Rev 3:20) and where God sends the Holy Spirit (Gal 4:6). It is the realm of God’s influence in man and always referred to as the “inner man.”
** burning, Greek word KAIO. to light, to keep burning, to set on fire, light by fire, consume with fire. Fire is a symbol of the Holy Spirit (Ac 2:1-4)
** opened, Greek word DIANOIGO, to open as to expose; to open one's mind, meaning to explain, cause to understand, to rouse the faculty of learning or desire for understanding.
** Scriptures, Greek word GRAPHE. Writings. Singular meaning part of the Scriptures or plural meaning whole of the Scriptures. The Scriptures signifies authority.
(Word Study References: Lexical Aids to the New Testament compiled and edited by Spiros Zodiates; A Concise Dictionary of the Greek by John Koehlenberger, III; Thayer’s Dictionary; Strong’s Dictionary.)
* * * * *
Hearts that are on fire have Jesus and are listening to Him. As we walk this life with Jesus, as we listen to Him explaining His word, our hearts will burn within us.
Two disciples were walking with Jesus although they didn't know it was Him. It was just a few hours after resurrection of Jesus. They were hopeless and dejected. Although they heard of the women's story about how they've been told by angels of the risen Christ, they refused to believe it. It was just too good to be true. They were travelling on foot. It was eleven kilometers from Jerusalem to Emmaus which would have taken them about two and a half to three hours of walking. And all these precious hours, they were walking with Jesus and Jesus were opening the Scriptures to them, explaining to them why the Christ would have to suffer, die and rise again. They did not recognize the Lord Jesus yet they felt a strangely familiar feeling they only felt exclusively when they were with the Lord. Still not understanding, they couldn't have guessed that the man they were walking along and talking with was their Lord, as they could have seen Jesus crucified, on the cross dying or dead.
And then comes the moment of revelation. It was nearly evening when they reached their destination. They invited the man to stay with them. At the table, the man took bread, gave thanks to God, broke the bread and began giving the bread to them. Then it hit them - it was Jesus! Their eyes were opened and they recognized Him as He disappeared from their sight. The two were thrilled. It's true! Jesus is alive. They asked one another, “Were not our hearts burning within us while he talked with us on the road and opened the Scriptures to us?”
The presence of Jesus is undeniable. There is Fire (read: Spirit) that your heart begins to melt. Your inner being will sense it - you are on fire! Your heart begins to understand the love of Jesus as this Fire brings you warmth, comfort, peace, direction, power, joy. The fear of the unknown darkness begins to fade away. The literal presence of Jesus brings understanding to the Scriptures. The presence of Jesus brings the Fire into our hearts, the powerful indwelling of the Holy Spirit. (Gal 4:6). A heart that Jesus sets on fire has His presence and His word. The presence of Jesus is a promise that His disciples ought to claim. Before He ascended to heaven, He promised that as we do His ministry, He will be with us. Matthew 28:19-20 says, “Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.” The physical and literal presence of Jesus is available to those who follow Him as His disciples. When we do His work, He is not only with us – He empowers us!
And when we are there in his presence, let us listen to Him as He speaks. Let Him pour out His heart to us, let us hear what He has to say through His word. Let Him set our hearts on fire.
The Road to Emmaus becomes a model on how we ought to experience and enjoy the Fire of the presence of Jesus: in His presence, the Spirit and His Word set us on fire. And if you are on fire for Him, would you abruptly put this experience to an end? The two disciples were with Jesus for three hours or so and yet they didn’t want this to end as they invited Him in. There is no quality time with Jesus without quantity time. There ought to be a considerable amount of time for us all just to enjoy Him. When the disciples reached their destination, they invited the Lord inside the house – yes, they wanted more of Him as if the three hours they had with Him were not enough. We are all familiar with this sense of the Holy Spirit’s fire. When we are there, we don’t want it to stop. So why are we all hurriedly praying and reading the Word? We say to ourselves, “surely the Lord will understand that I don’t have much time.” But even if the Lord understands, are we really willing to forfeit the blessings of the Fire of Jesus for the sake of a few dollars? For the sake of our favourite TV shows? For the sake of our time on the computer? Our times of devotion (or quiet time) is never an obligation, but a joy. It is something not all can experience. It is a privilege we have as children of God.
Do you want Jesus to set your heart on fire? Then take the Road to Emmaus with Him. Jesus is inviting us all to walk with Him. Don’t walk hurriedly. Enjoy your every step. Listen to His voice. Savour His presence. Look at His face. Wonder at the majesty of His glory. Cherish His love. Smile as He smiles at you. Melt at the warmth of his Fire.
Let’s walk on the Road to Emmaus with Him - let’s walk this life’s journey with Him.
And there’s more! At the end of the journey, Jesus reveals more of Him – Jesus reveals who He truly is.
Encouraging notes from JIL Canada local church Pastors and Coordinators!
Alness (North York)
Jesus Is Lord Church is a Philippine-based, Christ-centred Full-Gospel Christian Church that is doing ministry work since 1978. It is currently present in 55 countries around the world. In 1987 Jesus Is Lord Church started its ministry work in Canada and found a home in 8 of its provinces today - British Columbia, Alberta, Saskatchewan, Manitoba, Ontario, Quebec, New Brunswick, and Nova Scotia.