2017-04-23 – Rev. Dr. Ryan Sato – First Baptist Church Edmonton
April 23, 2017
Our closing story in the gospel of Luke is a doozy!
It’s exclusive to Luke and enlivens our imaginations with humour, irony & intrigue.
2 dejected disciples. Dragging their feet and making the sad, lonely 11 km trek from Jerusalem to their hometown of Emmaus.
They are talking about all the kerfuffle of Passover weekend.
They were there on the outskirts of town when Jesus came into Jerusalem on a colt…they heard the crowds say it…and they were pretty convinced… “Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord!”
But Hosanna’s and the cloak-swinging is but a distant memory.
And then suddenly, a voice…ack!
“What are we talking about?? Are you the only one in Jerusalem who does not know?”
“Jesus… of Nazareth… WE HAD HOPED that he was the one…”
“Who you calling foolish? What? Messiah…suffer? Moses and the prophets foretold of this….?”
“You’re not going to leave us are you…you speak as one who is filled with such wisdom and winsomeness…don’t leave…stay!”
–WHEN HE WAS AT THE TABLE with them…he took bread, blessed and broke it, and gave it to them.
And he vanished from their sight.
Last week, I encouraged us to move from “where’s Jesus”… to “there’s Jesus!”
The good news for us in the wake of today’s story is 2-fold:
i) Jesus shows up in the breaking of the bread
ii) He is not vanishing…he is here.
And that’s why we come to the table of the Lord.
Not just to remember Jesus…but if you’ve been here over the past several years at FBC, you’ve heard us say that there is something more going on here…
The bread and the cup are not limited to symbols…they are the presence of Christ.
• Now, not in the Roman Catholic sense…but somewhere in between!
And so we’ve added a communion/Lord’s table this month.
Because if Jesus shows up in a meaning-filled way every time we gather at the table…then getting to the table a few extra times in the year is not just a good spiritual practice, it’s a life-infusing practice!
Jesus, you put your life into our hands and we put our lives into yours.
So today, as we come to the table…rejoice! Jesus is here!
We are witnesses of new life.
We are grateful that Jesus companions with us,
Even when we feel hopeless and helpless,
And he promises to fill us with his peace, and he longs to warm our hearts,
And he reminds us of the reality that life emerges from places of
death, darkness and suffering.
Let us give thanks this morning, for God’s amazing love and providence for us…
And then let us be nourished and nurtured by the Table of our Lord,
Who longs again to be found by us,
Who delights in revealing himself through word & bread,
Who seeks to fill us with his sustenance and pour his salvation life upon us.
Jesus is here…turning our mourning into dancing…clothing us with joy…
Oh Lord, my God, I will give THANKS to you forever.