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Previous Challenge Entry (Level 3 – Advanced)
Topic: Sharp (03/07/13)

TITLE: Epic Clarity
By Cheryl Harrison
03/14/13


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Rumors echoed throughout Jerusalem. The epic events of the weekend had everyone talking. The arrest, crucifixion and death of the Nazarene consumed every conversation.

“Have you heard the latest news? Thieves carried off the heretic’s body!”

“Jesus is alive just like he said! He is our Messiah!”

The disciples had scattered. Some hid in an upper room apartment while others returned home.

Cleopas maneuvered through the busy streets. He stepped aside to allow a procession of people to pass by. He scanned the crowd in search of his traveling companion.

Where is he? Doesn’t he realize that we must reach Emmaus before nightfall?

Cleopas paused under a sycamore tree; its shade provided welcome relief from the afternoon sun. He usually traveled light, so he carried no baggage other than a heavy heart.

Soon, his friend joined him in the shade. “Sorry I’m late, Cleopas. It was unavoidable.”

Cleopas frowned. “I honestly don’t know how this happened. I was sure he was the Messiah. How could I be so wrong?”

The two men began their journey home. Along the way, they discussed everything they had witnessed.

“I don't understand,” Cleopas exclaimed. “I was there, in the room when Jesus healed that paralyzed man. I heard his words. I saw the man stand to his feet and walk!”

His companion nodded in agreement. “Yes, and I witnessed his remarkable responses to so many ridiculous questions. The Pharisee’s blindly questioned him without any regard to his divine identity.”

The steady stream of travelers on the road had thinned quite a bit by the time the two men reached the crossroads. As they continued eastward toward Emmaus, a stranger came along side them. He listened in on their conversation and then asked, "What things happened in Jerusalem?"

Cleopas sighed with disbelief. "You're kidding me, right? Have you not heard what happened in Jerusalem? They killed Jesus! They crucified our Messiah; the only one who could redeem Israel."

The stranger placed his hand on Cleopas' shoulder. "Beloved of God, I sense your deep grief. Please hear my words. It seems that you have forgotten the ancient lessons your father taught you. Do you not remember the words Moses spoke to Israel while they were in the wilderness? Moses told the people, 'The LORD your God will raise up for you a prophet like me from among you, from your fellow Israelites. You must listen to him'."

The stranger's words captured men's attention. An ember of hope began to burn in their hearts. He seemed to know what they needed to hear. He reminded them of all the promises of God; the promises already kept, and the promises yet to keep. By the time they arrived in Emmaus, the ember of hope in their hearts had exploded into a blazing fire of faith.

The men could not contain their excitement. "Please stay and eat with us," they implored.

"We wish to continue our discussion," Cleopas added.

The stranger agreed to stay. As their meal was prepared, he continued to explain God's plan of salvation. He reminded them of the prophet Isaiah. "Do you remember Isaiah's words?"

"Which words?" The men asked.

As the stranger took a loaf of bread into his hands, he began to quote Isaiah, "The Spirit of the Sovereign LORD is on me, because the LORD has anointed me to proclaim good news to the poor. He has sent me to bind up the brokenhearted, to proclaim freedom for the captives and release from darkness for the prisoners, to proclaim the year of the LORD’s favor and the day of vengeance of our God, to comfort all who mourn."

After he finished speaking, the stranger broke the bread and then he vanished right before their eyes.

"Did you see that?" Cleopas touched the pillow where the stranger had been seated. "It's still warm!"

"It was Jesus!" They exclaimed in unison. The sudden clarity of the situation flooded their hearts with joy.

"I understand now!" Cleopas jumped to his feet. "I remember when Jesus read that same passage from Isaiah. He told the people, 'Today this Scripture is fulfilled in your hearing'. It's true, Jesus is our Messiah! We must return to Jerusalem and tell the other disciples!"

+++++++

Author Notes:

Scripture passages in the order they appear:

Deuteronomy 18:15
Isaiah 61:1-2
Luke 4:21


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This article has been read 346 times
Member Comments
Member Date
CD Swanson 03/14/13
Powerful and meaningful entry, with great imagery which brought this to life.

God bless~
Phyllis Inniss 03/17/13
This is my favourite story in the Bible. My heart is always warmed when I read it and I like the way you gave it a new life, even though the message is the same. No matter how sad we are, Jesus can bring us joy when he enters and touches our heart. Thanks for this rendition of the Emmaus story.
lynn gipson 03/18/13
This is one of my favorite parts of the bible. You wrote and told it beautifully. Thank you so much for writing this, it just brought such a peaceful feeling to me heart. God Bless, Lynn
lynn gipson 03/18/13
This is one of my favorite parts of the bible. You wrote and told it beautifully. Thank you so much for writing this, it just brought such a peaceful feeling to me heart. God Bless, Lynn
A B03/18/13
Descriptive and interesting. I could picture the scenes. Well written.
Christina Banks 03/18/13
I loved your retelling of this Bible story. I had a feeling where the story was going from the start, and was happy to be proven right. Nicely done!
Bonnie Bowden03/18/13
Powerfully written. Just in time for the Easter celebration.
Alicia Renkema03/18/13
An appropriate title for the dawning of their clarity was certainly of epic proportions. More importantly, this whole story was such a lovely tribute to our Lord Jesus... I have always loved this story from scripture because it reminds us all that before we can experience a "resurrection" in our lives there will always be a dying... This was so beautifully told that I was reading it through my tears. The word of God just rang in my heart as I read this. Thank you so much for touching my heart.
Judith Gayle Smith03/18/13
Thank you for taking me along on this momentous and joyous walk . . .
Ellen Carr 03/19/13
You have retold this Bible story very well. It is engaging and true to the Bible facts. Well done!
Shann Hall-LochmannVanBennekom 03/20/13
I think you did a marvelous job of retelling this familiar Bible story. You brought the characters to life for me and I felt like I was right there with them watching it as it unfolded. Great job.
Virgil Youngblood 03/20/13
You put us there on the road to listen in on such engaging conversation, and to rejoice in prophecy fulfilled. Well done.
Edmond Ng 03/21/13
A well written retelling of the biblical event. An enjoyable read.
Christina Banks 03/21/13
Congratulations on your EC!
lynn gipson 03/21/13
Congratulations on your well deserved win! You go girl!
Bea Edwards 03/21/13
Well crafted retelling of this Bible story. I'm a bit slow with innuendo so I didn't get your subtle meaning until the second read through (with a hint from your title) and then it was ah ha...Perfect!
well done and congratulations.
Alicia Renkema03/21/13
As you could tell from my original comments I hope, this was one of my favorite entries. Congratulations on your second place level win in Advances and a 6th placing over all for a lovely EC. Way to go. I just think this is the most awesome story!
Linda Buskirk03/21/13
This piece is faithful to scripture yet creatively written. It prompted me to meditate a bit on what that experience must have been like. Thank you! How precious it is to feel close to Jesus.
Bonnie Bowden03/24/13
Congratulations on your 6th place EC award!