Bible Commentary

Luke 24

John Wesley’s Explanatory Notes

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(Read all of Luke 24)

Verse 4

[4] And it came to pass, as they were much perplexed thereabout, behold, two men stood by them in shining garments:

Behold two — Angels in the form of men. Mary had seen them a little before. They had disappeared on these women's coming to the sepulchre, but now appeared again. St. Matthew and Mark mention only one of them, appearing like a young man.

Verse 6

[6] He is not here, but is risen: remember how he spake unto you when he was yet in Galilee,

Remember how he spake to you, saying, The Son of man must be delivered — This is only a repetition of the words which our Lord had spoken to them before his passion But it is observable, he never styles himself the Son of man after his resurrection.

Verse 13

[13] And, behold, two of them went that same day to a village called Emmaus, which was from Jerusalem about threescore furlongs.

Mark 16:12.

Verse 21

[21] But we trusted that it had been he which should have redeemed Israel: and beside all this, to day is the third day since these things were done.

To-day is the third day — The day he should have risen again, if at all.

Verse 25

[25] Then he said unto them, O fools, and slow of heart to believe all that the prophets have spoken:

O foolish — Not understanding the designs and works of God: And slow of heart - Unready to believe what the prophets have so largely spoken.

Verse 26

[26] Ought not Christ to have suffered these things, and to enter into his glory?

Ought not Christ — If he would redeem man, and fulfil the prophecies concerning him, to have suffered these things? - These very sufferings which occasion your doubts, are the proofs of his being the Messiah.

And to enter into his glory — Which could be done no other way.

Verse 28

[28] And they drew nigh unto the village, whither they went: and he made as though he would have gone further.

He made as though he would go farther — Walking forward, as if he was going on; and he would have done it, had they not pressed him to stay.

Verse 29

[29] But they constrained him, saying, Abide with us: for it is toward evening, and the day is far spent. And he went in to tarry with them.

They constrained him — By their importunate entreaties.

Verse 30

[30] And it came to pass, as he sat at meat with them, he took bread, and blessed it, and brake, and gave to them.

He took the bread, and blessed, and brake — Just in the same manner as when ho instituted his last supper.

Verse 31

[31] And their eyes were opened, and they knew him; and he vanished out of their sight.

Their eyes were opened — That is, the supernatural cloud was removed: And he vanished - Went away insensibly.

Verse 32

[32] And they said one to another, Did not our heart burn within us, while he talked with us by the way, and while he opened to us the scriptures?

Did not our heart burn within us — Did not we feel an unusual warmth of love! Was not our heart burning, etc.

Verse 33

[33] And they rose up the same hour, and returned to Jerusalem, and found the eleven gathered together, and them that were with them,

The same hour — Late as it was.

Verse 34

[34] Saying, The Lord is risen indeed, and hath appeared to Simon.

The Lord hath appeared to Simon — Before he was seen of the twelve apostles, 1 Corinthians 15:5. He had, in his wonderful condescension and grace, taken an opportunity on the former part of that day (though where, or in what manner, is not recorded) to show himself to Peter, that he might early relieve his distresses and fears, on account of having so shamefully denied his Master.

Verse 35

[35] And they told what things were done in the way, and how he was known of them in breaking of bread.

In the breaking of bread — The Lord's Supper.

Verse 36

[36] And as they thus spake, Jesus himself stood in the midst of them, and saith unto them, Peace be unto you.

Jesus stood in the midst of them — It was just as easy to his Divine power to open a door undiscernibly, as it was to come in at a door opened by some other hand. Mark 16:14,19; John 20:19.

Verse 40

[40] And when he had thus spoken, he shewed them his hands and his feet.

He showed them his hands and his feet — That they might either see or feel the prints of the nails.

Verse 41

[41] And while they yet believed not for joy, and wondered, he said unto them, Have ye here any meat?

While they believed not for joy — They did in some sense believe: otherwise they would not have rejoiced. But their excess of joy prevented a clear, rational belief.

Verse 43

[43] And he took it, and did eat before them.

He took it and ate before them — Not that he had any need of food; but to give them still farther evidence.

Verse 44

[44] And he said unto them, These are the words which I spake unto you, while I was yet with you, that all things must be fulfilled, which were written in the law of Moses, and in the prophets, and in the psalms, concerning me.

And he said — On the day of his ascension.

In the law, and the prophets, and the psalms — The prophecies as well as types, relating to the Messiah, are contained either in the books of Moses (usually called the law) in the Psalms, or in the writings of the prophets; little being said directly concerning him in the historical books.

Verse 45

[45] Then opened he their understanding, that they might understand the scriptures,

Then opened he their understanding, to understand the Scriptures — He had explained them before to the two as they went to Emmaus. But still they Understood them not, till he took off the veil from their hearts, by the illumination of his Spirit.

Verse 47

[47] And that repentance and remission of sins should be preached in his name among all nations, beginning at Jerusalem.

Beginning at Jerusalem — This was appointed most graciously and wisely: graciously, as it encouraged the, greatest sinners to repent, when they saw that even the murderers of Christ were not excepted from mercy: and wisely, as hereby Christianity was more abundantly attested; the facts being published first on the very spot where they happened.

Verse 49

[49] And, behold, I send the promise of my Father upon you: but tarry ye in the city of Jerusalem, until ye be endued with power from on high.

Behold I send the promise — Emphatically so called; the Holy Ghost.

Verse 50

[50] And he led them out as far as to Bethany, and he lifted up his hands, and blessed them.

He led them out as far as Bethany — Not the town, but the district: to the mount of Olives, Acts 1:12, which stood within the boundaries of Bethany.

Verse 51

[51] And it came to pass, while he blessed them, he was parted from them, and carried up into heaven.

And while he was blessing them, he was parted from them — It was much more proper that our Lord should ascend into heaven, than that he should rise from the dead, in the sight of the apostles. For his resurrection was proved when they saw him alive after his passion: but they could not see him in heaven while they continued on earth.

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