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The Magazine of The Evangelical Lutheran Church in America

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A question for every Easter

Where do we recognize Christ?

We may go to Scripture for answers, but it's often the questions we find there that are more interesting. Or at least more productive. For those questions move us to wrestle with God's word and ask: "What does this mean for me today?"

Think of some of them. "Am I my brother's keeper?" (Cain to God). "Were you there when I laid the foundations of the earth?" (God to Job). "Wretched man that I am! Who will rescue me from this body of death?" (Paul to the universe).

The question that's held most meaning for me is one I first heard in Sunday school: "Were not our hearts burning within us while he was talking to us on the road ...?" You know the story, from Luke 24, and this year it's part of an alternate reading for Easter evening (verses 13-35). Two disciples leave Jerusalem for Emmaus, deeply dispirited over Jesus' crucifixion, thinking all is lost. But "where two or three are gathered together ..." there is Christ in their midst.

And, there is Christ, with Cleopas and a friend. (A few Bible scholars venture the friend could have been a woman, perhaps Cleopas' wife.) In the 7-mile walk, Jesus — ever the teacher — meets the disciples where they are, asks questions himself, even chides them as he interprets for them from Moses and the prophets the "things about himself in all the Scriptures."


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