In Luke 24 Jesus appears on the way to Emmaus,
“So they drew near to the village to which they were going. He acted as if he were going farther but they urged him strongly, saying, “Stay with us, for it is toward evening and the day is now far spent.” So he went in to stay with them. When he was at table with them, he took the bread and blessed and broke it and gave it to them. And their eyes were opened, and they recognized him. And he vanished from their sight. 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?” And they rose that same hour and returned to Jerusalem. And they found the eleven and those who were with them gathered together, saying, “The Lord has risen indeed, and has appeared to Simon!” Then they told what had happened on the road, and how he was known to them in the breaking of the bread.” (Luke 24:28–35 ESV)
What strikes me about this passage is the fact that their hearts “burned” within them and yet he was not “fully” revealed to them. It was as if their hearts were captivated by the thought that it was truly him all along, and yet it wasn’t until just before he vanished that their eyes were opened.
I can’t help to imagine this “burning” sensation as the prompting of the spirit. In relationship to my many experiences of the internal battle that results in the softening of my heart to things the Lord has revealed. Yet the dots were not fully connected until Jesus pointed to the scriptures, make himself clear, broke the bread and eyes were opened. The passage doesn’t say that he showed them his wounds or that he said “hey! It’s me!” He revealed the truths about himself by way of the scriptures and even through that the Lord had to open their eyes.
Aaron Armstrong on his blog, Blogging Theologically, had a quote from R.C. Sproul that speaks to this idea of the truth staring us right in the face and we don’t even see it.
We certainly have sound, objective reasons to believe the Word of God, but those reasons are about as necessary as arguments for light to people who can see the sun. Our joy is inexpressible. It is a glorious joy, a weighty joy, not a superficial joy. -R.C. Sproul 1 & 2 Peter: St. Andrew’s Expositional Commentary, p. 38 (Kindle Edition)
The point here is, Just as Jesus used the scriptures to reveal the incredible weight of the fulfillment of his death and resurrection, so can we. The scriptures pointed to Him! This is glorious and speaks loads about the sufficiency of scripture. Yet, along with the scriptures was the “burning within” their hearts to believe. Even here, they do not marvel at “seeing” the wounds on His hands, and in His side. They marvel at how incredibly stupid they were as the truth stared them right in the face and yet, their “eyes” did not see Him until just before He left.
The spirit works much like this in our hearts when we find our way into sin. The truth of our condition as believers is staring us right in the face, all along the spirit is prompting, and yet it seems to take a miraculous work of God to wake us up and breathe life back into our hardened heart. “Their eyes were opened!” Oh, how we may be humbled by the sheer fact that we in ourselves cannot bring about “opened” eyes. That it is the Lord himself that will reveal himself to us. Let our lives and prayers be seasoned with this type of humility and may we in our darkest hours hold fast to a faith in Him by which we need no signs and wonders but simply Him. May our eyes be opened to Him!