Walking to Emmaus (on the Emmaus Road)
printable lesson plan: WALKING to Emmaus
Thesis: “Didn’t our hearts burn within us as he talked with us on the road and explained the Scriptures to us?” (vs 32)
Scripture: Luke 24:13-35 (NLT):
13 That same day two of Jesus’ followers were walking to the village of Emmaus, seven miles from Jerusalem. 14 As they walked along they were talking about everything that had happened. 15 As they talked and discussed these things, Jesus himself suddenly came and began walking with them. 16 But God kept them from recognizing him.
17 He asked them, “What are you discussing so intently as you walk along?”
They stopped short, sadness written across their faces. 18 Then one of them, Cleopas, replied, “You must be the only person in Jerusalem who hasn’t heard about all the things that have happened there the last few days.”
19 “What things?” Jesus asked.
“The things that happened to Jesus, the man from Nazareth,” they said. “He was a prophet who did powerful miracles, and he was a mighty teacher in the eyes of God and all the people. 20 But our leading priests and other religious leaders handed him over to be condemned to death, and they crucified him. 21 We had hoped he was the Messiah who had come to rescue Israel. This all happened three days ago.
22 “Then some women from our group of his followers were at his tomb early this morning, and they came back with an amazing report. 23 They said his body was missing, and they had seen angels who told them Jesus is alive! 24 Some of our men ran out to see, and sure enough, his body was gone, just as the women had said.”
25 Then Jesus said to them, “You foolish people! You find it so hard to believe all that the prophets wrote in the Scriptures. 26 Wasn’t it clearly predicted that the Messiah would have to suffer all these things before entering his glory?” 27 Then Jesus took them through the writings of Moses and all the prophets, explaining from all the Scriptures the things concerning himself.
28 By this time they were nearing Emmaus and the end of their journey. Jesus acted as if he were going on, 29 but they begged him, “Stay the night with us, since it is getting late.” So he went home with them. 30 As they sat down to eat, he took the bread and blessed it. Then he broke it and gave it to them. 31 Suddenly, their eyes were opened, and they recognized him. And at that moment he disappeared!
32 They said to each other, “Didn’t our hearts burn within us as he talked with us on the road and explained the Scriptures to us?” 33 And within the hour they were on their way back to Jerusalem. There they found the eleven disciples and the others who had gathered with them
Icebreaker: Do you like to go walking with friends? What are some things you like to discuss on your walks?
Activity: Celebrity 20 Questions:
Have individuals thinks of someone relatively famous. The rest of the group must ask yes or no questions to try and discover who the person is.
For example: Person: Harry Potter, Question: Is your person a female? (no), is He a real person? (no). Etc…
Once the person is revealed, ask
- If you were to go for a walk with this person, what would you talk about?
- What questions would you ask?
- What type of stories would you want to here?
Read Luke 24:13-21
- Why were these men on the road to Emmaus? What were they discussing?
- What happened that crushed their hopes and expectations
Read verses 22-24
- Why did they not believe the story of the resurrection?
- What keeps people today from believing the resurrection?
Review the document “Thoughts on the Resurection”
- Which theory seams the most plausible (seeming reasonable or probable)? Is that theory more or less plausible then Jesus actually rising from the dead? Why or why not?
- Why is it difficult to disprove the resurrection?
- Why is the resurrection critical to the Christian faith? (Where would we be without it?)
Read verses 25-33
- Why did these men not recognize Jesus?
- Why do you think Jesus kept his identity hidden from them while they walked?
- What does Jesus do while he walks with these two men?
- Why do you think Jesus finally reveals who he is, then disappears?
- What is their reaction and response to recognizing Jesus?
Our Current Context:
- How might Jesus be walking with people today?
- How might people not recognize Jesus today?
- What prevents people from recognizing and accepting Jesus?
- In what different ways does Jesus reveal himself to people?
Video: Recognizing Him by Faith Jongewaard. This was from Pastor Faiths sermon last April, when she performed a monologue based on one of these men’s experience on the Emmaus road.
The full sermon is available here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Y68o1HlHGrM
Selected clips below.
Recognizing Him part 1 – Watch Pastor Faith’s presentation of this story.
- What insights into the story does this provide?
- How do you think this interaction changed these men’ life?
Video 2: Recognizing Him part 2
Watch the second part of Pastor Faith’s presentation of this story.
- According to the video, how did this experience change the man?
- Why do you think this experience with Jesus caused him to live life differently?
- What does this say about how Jesus changes people?
- What does it say about how Jesus can change you?
“Didn’t our hearts burn within us as he talked with us on the road and explained the Scriptures to us?” (vs 32)
Stories of Jesus
- What story of Jesus makes your “heart burn” with hope and excitement?
- What about this story makes your “heart burn”?
- How does this story inspire you to grow in your faith and share Jesus with others?
- Challenge: Share this story with a friend and talk about why it is important to you.
- Share a time when your “heart burned” in excitement for Jesus?
- How did that experience shape your faith then and now?
- Does your heart burn for Jesus like it use to? Why or why not?
- What causes the fire in our hearts to settle down?
Songs: Here are 2 songs that are focused on our hearts burning for God, and asking God to restore that passion for him that may have faded.
Have the group listen (provide lyric sheets if possible)
Toby Mac: Burn us up (Youth Friendly)
- Song Lyric Video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Q2qwbcwSJFY
- Lyrics: https://www.azlyrics.com/lyrics/tobymac/burnforyou.html
Shane and Shane: Yearn (Adult Friendly)
- Song Lyric Video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TTjuwuWPgSo
- Lyrics: https://genius.com/Shane-and-shane-yearn-lyrics
Prayer: Ask God to ignite our hearts (individually, as a small group, and our church), and change our lives, through the power of His resurrection.
Provide individuals a chance to pray on their own, or with partners.