Sermon Transcript – He Put the Key in Their Pocket

Series A – Third Sunday of Easter – Sunday, April 23, 2023 | Pr. Chris Rosebrough

Welcome to the Teaching Ministry of Kongsvinger Lutheran Church. Kongsvinger is a beacon for the Gospel of Jesus Christ and is located on the plains of Northwestern Minnesota.
We proclaim Christ and Him crucified for our sins and salvation by grace through faith alone, and now, here’s a message from Pastor Chris Rosebrough:
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Time StampTranscript
0:22The holy Gospel
0:29According to Saint Luke the 24th chapter foreign
0:36that very day two of them were going to a village named Emmaus about seven miles from Jerusalem and they were talking
0:42with each other about all these things that had happened while they were talking and discussing together Jesus
0:48himself Drew near and went with them but their eyes were kept from recognizing him and he said to them what is this
0:55conversation that you are holding with each other as you walk and they stood still looking sad one of them named
1:01cleopas answered him are you the only visitor to Jerusalem who does not know the things that have happened there in
1:06these days and he said to them what things and they said to him will concerning Jesus of Nazareth a man who
1:14was a prophet Mighty indeed in word before God and all the people and how our chief priests and rulers delivered
1:20him up to be condemned to death and they crucified him but we had hoped that he was the one to redeem Israel yes and
1:28besides all this it is now the third day since these things happened moreover some women of our company amazed us they
1:34were at the tomb early in the morning and when they did did not find his body they came back saying that they had even
1:39seen a vision of angels who said that he was alive and some of those who were with us went to the tomb and found it
1:46just as the women had said but him they did not see and he said to them oh foolish ones and slow of heart to
1:53believe all that the prophets have spoken was it not necessary that the Christ should suffer these things and
1:59enter into his kingdom and then beginning with Moses and all the prophets he interpreted them in all the
2:04scriptures the things concerning himself so they drew near to the Village to which they were going he acted as if he
2:10were going farther but they urged him strongly saying stay with us for it is toward evening and the day is now far
2:16spent so he went in to stay with them and when he was at table with them he took the bread and blessed it and broke
2:22it and gave it to them and their eyes were open and they recognized him and then he vanished from their sight they
2:29said to each other did not our hearts burn within us while he talked to us on the road while he opened to us the
2:35scriptures and they wrote those that very same hour and returned to Jerusalem and they found the eleven and those who
2:41were with him gathered together saying the Lord has risen indeed and has appeared to Simon and then they told
2:48what had happened on the road and how he was known to them in the breaking of the bread this is the gospel of the Lord
2:55hallelujah Christ is risen
3:00in the name of Jesus so when I was a Nazarene I couldn’t make any sense of the Bible I it literally
3:07made no sense to me and you you’ll know you guys remember when they used to have Christian bookstores those were a big
3:12thing when I was growing up they seemed to have fallen by the wayside seems to have solved that problem but
3:19you walk into a into a Christian bookstore back in the day and you know
3:24they had all kinds of resources to help you learn the Bible you know like Beth Moore Bible studies and stuff right
3:31um and and that’s the thing is that you’ll note that the church is really prone to uh the well whatever the fad of
3:38the moment is whoever the hot teacher is of the moment we all want to be a part of it you know you guys remember doing
3:45purpose-driven Life Bible studies and learning the 40 days of purpose it’s like a Evangelical version of Lent but
3:52without Easter at the end it’s kind of a mess and so I remember as a Nazarene I I
3:57was gonna slay my goliaths I I knew that I had just needed those five smooth stones and my Goliath would fall and I
4:05was daring to be a Daniel and I in fact I there was a song that went went with that with that whole daring to be a
4:11Daniel in the themes of Shadrach Meshach and Bendigo remember the I’m not going to bow to your Idols song I’m really
4:18dating myself here it’s really a mess but all of that being said I couldn’t make any sense of it in fact if I were
4:25still an azerine or back when I was in Nazarene I would look at our epistle text today and and I would have certain
4:32things highlighted okay and and highlighted conduct yourselves with fear
4:38throughout the time of your Exile moving forward uh purify your souls by your
4:43obedience to the truth and uh and stuff like this right law
4:50and here’s the issue I really didn’t know my Bible I I was a product of
4:56Christian schools at least from seventh grade on to high school and I I really didn’t understand my Bible in fact I
5:02kind of got annoyed when when I would go to church and the sermon would be kind of on the same things I’ve always heard
5:09all right I get it I get it I gotta avoid alcohol gotcha okay and don’t smoke gosh I yeah I get it and and don’t
5:16hang out with loose women I I’m there with you you don’t have to keep reminding me about that and all of this
5:22stuff and make sure that you only go to movies that are rated at particular other thing and and you gotta you you and there was a big theme and that was
5:29don’t ever do anything that would compromise your witness you ever heard
5:35con you know Concepts like this like you know if you were seen in a um
5:40in a liquor store you know then your neighbors would never ever be willing to hear the gospel from you and I as a
5:48Lutheran I sit there and go well just buy them a case of beer invite them over and preach the gospel to them you know right but back then I was terrified of
5:56destroying my witness by being seen anywhere you know where alcohol was
6:01being poured and stuff like this and it was just complete drudgery and then I just keep thinking as I would read the
6:08Bible this legitimately doesn’t make sense I couldn’t figure out how to get
6:15the puzzle pieces together and so as a result of it I just kind of thought that
6:21God was always in a constant state of pretty much being grumpy and angry at me and I just need to tiptoe around him and
6:27not make eye contact so I wouldn’t be killed by his laser beams my wife has taken his place since then but that’s a
6:34whole other story you know but all of that being said all of that
6:40being said when we look at our gospel text today right in the middle of it you have these
6:46fellows explaining to Jesus who they don’t even recognize that that they
6:51can’t figure out what’s going on there was miraculous stuff going on the tomb
6:57was empty these are Disciples of Jesus who would have seen him perform Miracles and they can’t make heads or tails of
7:04what’s going on and the most bizarre statement in all of this is in verse 21
7:10we had hoped that he was the one to redeem Israel it’s kind of like when you
7:16go to your mechanic okay your car is making a sound or doing something weird and your mechanic opens up the you know
7:22the front of the the vehicle and starts poking around and he says well there’s your problem right there you know your
7:28your calipers turned in a clockwise position and should be in a negative two you know because of all the bearings and
7:35stuff and you I’m just going to get my scats of frats and turn it a few things and I’ll just fix things right up and of
7:41course you’re sitting there going I don’t know what he just said yeah right that’s by the way that’s my
7:46interpretation of how mechanics talk but um you’ll note that it’s like speaking in tongues but all of that being said
7:52he’s put you know there they are relaying all the bits of the Gospel all
7:59the important parts and they can’t put it together they don’t know what to do they’ve got
8:05this jigsaw puzzle and they don’t know how it all fits that’s kind of the point
8:11and so you’ll note here I’m going to make a a point right here at this point in the sermon that if the Nar were true
8:19that that signs and wonders and Miracle were Miracles were necessary for people to believe don’t you think that
8:25everybody in Judea at this time would be Believers in Jesus because Jesus would perform in Miracles left right and
8:32center right I mean the whole nation should be just praising God because the
8:38tomb is empty is just like Jesus said it would be and though and everybody in Judea is believing in Jesus because
8:44Jesus was a miracle worker like none other but you’ll note there’s something missing and that’s this miracles do not
8:53they do not tell you how to interpret them the scriptures do and my problem
9:00when I was a Nazarene was that despite the fact I had read the Bible through a few times I was annoyed and saw it as a
9:06to-do item list to read the scriptures and on top of it I had far more important things to do I was trying to
9:13figure out how to be the next Jukebox Hero and as a result of that I was it
9:18was important to play guitar I was interested in Duran Duran and and all the important things that go along with
9:24you know uh well dating and stuff like this so you know I was a little bit conflicted but as a result of it I
9:32didn’t know what to do with the scriptures either and none of the people I went to church with including my pastors ever said anything like Jesus in
9:39this text it’s as if Jesus has miraculously put the key to the
9:46scriptures to understand and unlock all of the Bible right in these fellows pockets and it all takes place in a long
9:54walk seven mile walk from Emmaus from Jerusalem to Emmaus in fact let’s read
9:59out our text so that very day it’s the day of the Resurrection he knows Jesus is busy on the day he’s resurrected he’s
10:05a busy fellow he’s got a lot of appointments in his calendar so two of
10:10two of them two of the G Jesus’s disciples were going to a village named Emmaus so they’re starting off in
10:16Jerusalem this is a seven mile walk from Jerusalem and they were talking with each other about all the things that had
10:24happened and while they were talking and discussing together Jesus himself Drew near and then went with them but their
10:30eyes were kept the Greek actually says their eyes were held from recognizing him it’s here where I think I should
10:36point this out if you have ever talked with a Jehovah’s Witness Jehovah’s Witnesses do not believe that Jesus rose
10:41bodily from the grave okay as a result of that here’s one of their big arguments well don’t you think that
10:48cleopas and this other disciple who were very familiar with Jesus who traced about the Judy and Wilderness with them
10:53that they would have recognized Jesus obviously the reason why they didn’t recognize Jesus is because he was in a
10:59spiritual form and not a physical one and you sit there and you go do you guys
11:05really know how to read or let alone read Greek it says their eyes were held
11:10their eyes were literally held and so the the same Jesus who can walk on the water and raise the dead and give sight
11:16to the blind he can hold your eyes so that you don’t recognize him because he has something that he’s about to do here
11:23and it’s important that they not get distracted by something you’ll note that
11:29Jesus isn’t there hey guys it’s me I’m back just like I said no he’s got something important to do so
11:36Jesus comes up and says what’s this conversation that you’re holding with each other as you walk and they stood still
11:45looking sad now I know what this looks like I’ve raised kids okay when you tell
11:50the kids guess what kids today we’re going to go shopping for school clothes
11:55we’re gonna go to JC Penney’s all right here’s the look
12:01okay that’s what these guys are doing right because you’ll I still remember that commercial it was a Staples
12:08commercial it would come around like late August as you’re getting ready to go to school and it’s it had the song
12:15It’s the Most Wonderful Time of the Year and it shows this father like skating
12:21through Staples buying school supplies for his kids because they’re gonna have to go back to school it was just a great anyway in the kizero
12:28thank you so that’s cleopas and this fellow they’re sad they’re standing there going
12:35so one of them named cleopas answered and and here’s kind of the thing they’re a little bit taken aback by the fact
12:41that Jesus doesn’t know what’s going on here and he said and he says are you the only visitor to Jerusalem who doesn’t
12:47know the things that have appear that have happened there in these days and Jesus said to them what things
12:55what do you mean what things okay they answered well concerning Jesus of Nazareth a man who was a prophet Mighty
13:01indeed and word before God and all the people and how our chief priests and rulers delivered him up to be condemned
13:07to death and they crucified him now it’s at this point we would note that here is
13:13where the Pharisees and the the chief priests and the elders would all have this great argument against Christianity
13:19and I love it because Paul just puts that thing to a to a to a Bitter End and
13:24that is this the scriptures say cursed is everyone who is hung on a tree that’s
13:31in the Bible that’s in the Old Testament and so they would point to the crucified Jesus and they would save Jesus is
13:37cursed Jesus is cursed right and that’s kind of part of what’s rattling around in their brain because they don’t know
13:44how to sort all this out we had hoped that he was the one to redeem Israel
13:51and of course we looking back with New Testament 2020 Vision sit there and go well of course that’s exactly what he
13:58was doing on the cross he was redeeming Israel bleeding and dying for your sins
14:04setting us free from slavery to sin death and the devil that’s what he was accomplishing on the cross but here’s
14:10the thing each and every one of us comes into this life dead and trespasses and sins and
14:16part of the discipleship process is getting a proper understanding of scripture because these guys by saying
14:24because he’s crucified we thought he was going to redeem Israel those two sentences going together I mean it’s
14:31like something hiding in plain sight and all they have to do is open their eyes
14:36and Jesus is going to open their eyes for them you’ll note their eyes are held so that they cannot recognize Jesus not
14:44physically at the moment so that they can recognize him in the Bible
14:49they should already have a proper understanding of the scripture to the point where they should see that the
14:55crucifixion of Christ is the very thing that did redeem Israel yet they do not see it yet and so they said yes besides
15:02all of this it’s now the third day since these things have happened and moreover some women in our company they amazed us
15:08they were at the tomb early in the morning and when they did not find his body they came back saying that they had
15:13even seen a vision of angels who said that he was alive and some of those who
15:19were with us went to the tomb and found it just as the women had said but him they did not see
15:26it’s like having a jigsaw puzzle a really big multi-piece jigsaw puzzle
15:31without the Box stop right my wife does jigsaw puzzles and boy she’s really good
15:36at it you know and and sometimes you know I I I like to annoy her just come
15:41along and go oh look I found a piece and pop it into place and how did how did you do that so fast you know yeah I just
15:48saw it you know yeah but she she’s the one who puts these things together and the thing is is that when she’s working
15:53on a puzzle where’s the box top right in front of her right because she’s got
16:00she’s got blobs over here and she’s got a frame around there and another blob here and things organized by color and
16:06pattern and stuff you know how it all works okay but that’s not a bad metaphor
16:11for how each and every one of us when we don’t understand the scriptures we don’t know how to put it all together you we
16:18have no box top so we’re sitting there with like a thousand pieces going what am I supposed to do with all this all
16:24right you know just start sorting it all out okay I I get the whole fact that God created Adam and Eve then he got Noah
16:30and the Ark I think I got that sorted out but then why did Abraham not be able
16:35to have a kid until he was 100 years old and what’s this what’s this with Jacob wrestling with with God in the middle of
16:42the Wilderness and then he got the whole Exodus thing and then we’ve got a bunch of stories about Judges and yeah
16:48anything is you can’t sort it all out it’s like all of these things so seems so independent from each other and
16:55you’re looking for a way to kind of get them all to kind of work together and
17:00you’ve got nothing to go on right and the worst thing you can do in
17:06that situation is put yourself into the middle of it and seem to think that you’re the glue that holds all the bits and pieces of the Bible together right
17:12because you’re not that have you noticed that the Bible was finished long before you were conceived I’m pretty sure it’s
17:20not about you but in our narcissistic satanic way of thinking we think it’s all about us so we try to make ourselves
17:26the center so that we can make sense of all of these bids but it doesn’t work that way and these
17:33fellows are suffering from the same problem which by the way gives me hope because you’ll note I’m a slow learner
17:39you’re a slow learner and these guys were clearly slow on the uptake they spent how much time with Jesus and they
17:44still don’t got this worked out so Jesus still with their eyes held now begins to open their eyes
17:53so he says oh foolish ones slow of heart to believe all that the prophets have
17:59spoken was it not necessary that the Christ should suffer these things and
18:04enter into his glory and then beginning with Moses and all the prophets he interpreted them in all the scriptures
18:11the things concerning himself Jesus is the key that unlocks the
18:18scripture it’s about him in fact he is the box top he’s the one who helps us to
18:25make sense of all of these disparate pieces and to put them in a way where we can then understand them and you’ll note
18:31here seven miles okay when I’m trying to get my heart rate up and I’m not
18:37recovering from an ankle injury um you know I I like to walk especially
18:43when it’s warm outside I’m thinking we might be able to get there by August at this rate but uh when I’m out walking I
18:50can do a mile in about 18 minutes right if I’m really kind of focusing and doing
18:55it right but that means I’m really trying to get my heart rate up and when I’m sauntering and and procrastinating
19:02and taking photos and stuff like that uh well miles get to be about 25-ish
19:08minutes right and they’ve got seven miles to go we’re talking like two and a
19:15half three hour walk this is like the best Bible study ever
19:20right and that’s the point Jesus here has held their eyes so he can
19:25open their eyes to the scripture because that’s where we need to be looking for
19:30Jesus we need to stop looking for the miraculous in our lives right now and sit and go wow the most amazing thing
19:36happened I woke up at 3 33 this morning what do you think the Lord’s trying to tell me go back to bed and read your
19:42Bible when you wake up in the morning that’s what he’s trying to tell you right that’s you get the point stop looking for the miraculous get your eyes
19:49into the book and know that it’s all about him so beginning with Moses and all the prophets he interpreted them in
19:54all the scriptures the things concerning himself so they drew near to the Village
20:00that they were going and he acted as if he were going farther and I would note something here I kind of take issue with
20:06the way ESV translate this because it makes it sound like Jesus is putting on a pretense he’s not and the reason why
20:12is because Jesus is looking at his eye his Apple watch going I’ve got an appointment in just like 20 minutes I’ve
20:18got to appear in the upper room to the disciples right he’s got things on his calendar he still has to accomplish that
20:24day so he’s got some things to do so he’s trying to figure out do I have enough time for this and so they say
20:29stay with us it’s toward the evening the day is now far spent so he went in to
20:35stay with them and when he was at table with them he took the bread and blessed
20:41it and broke it and gave it to them and all of a sudden hey wait a second
20:49you’re Jesus and you can see him going right and then whoosh okay
20:58I’m sure he did it that just like that yeah but you know I I like to think of him Vanishing with a big old smile on
21:05his face you know the satisfaction of knowing that they now get it but they
21:10begin to recognize then the blessing of what they just received from Christ a
21:17great Bible study that has now given them the very Keys necessary to
21:23understanding the scripture so that they can go back through their minds and recognize no wait a second
21:29the fact that he was crucified for our sins wasn’t it the prophet Isaiah who said he was pierced for our
21:35transgressions he was bruised for our iniquities the chastisement that brought us peace was upon him and by his stripes
21:41were healed yeah that was Isaiah who said that so of course Jesus being crucified that means he is the Redeemer
21:47of Israel you can see all the jigsaw puzzle pieces coming together and the picture coming back to them and the
21:53satisfaction that goes with it how many of you
21:58in the course of your walk as a Christian have had that satisfaction of going oh
22:05that’s what that text means right
22:11and that’s sorry I didn’t mean to invoke
22:16the the the s word so can’t say it out loud but but you get
22:23the idea we’ve got that satisfaction of over and again of hearing the biblical
22:28text that we didn’t understand and then seeing these pieces come together and that just taking our breath away right
22:35and not only does that happen we have the peace that comes from the comforting
22:41assurance that Christ is the one who’s come to save us I don’t have to slay my
22:48goliaths I’m bad at slaying goliaths anyways when I grab my five smooth Stones I don’t practice a lot with those
22:55things and you know what I do with them I miss and so do you but Christ didn’t miss he’s the one who
23:03slayed the Goliath the Satan for you and for me and he was the one who never once
23:08bowed the knee to Satan even when tempted by Satan in the wilderness Bow Down and Worship me and say and Jesus
23:15said get behind me Satan it is written to Worship the Lord your God in him only
23:20shall you serve right Jesus never once failed and by his death on the cross he
23:26has conquered Satan he’s conquered the world our own sinful desires and he has
23:32redeemed you and I and we’re grafted into Israel so you can see these guys
23:37now all of a sudden the light goes on they recognize that it was Jesus
23:42instructing him that entire time and they said did not our hearts burn within
23:48us while he talked to us on the road and while he opened to us the scriptures and here’s the thing Christ is still in the
23:55business of doing that every single faithful Church where the pastor does
24:01his duty of preaching the word in season and out of season we are being instructed by Christ and he himself is
24:09opening up the scriptures and showing us all the things concerning himself
24:14so that he can comfort and assure us of our forgiveness of the mercy that we have in Christ the love of God for us
24:21the tenacity with which he came to save us and by the far firm strong hand he
24:28continues to Hold Us in the faith and protect us from The Wiles and the
24:33schemes and the attacks of the devil so with this now understanding of the
24:38scriptures they rose that same hour and they returned to Jerusalem
24:4414 miles in one day
24:49ah I shake to think about it but they were too excited to stay in Emmaus they
24:54had to go back they had to let the fellows and the disciples and the apostles know and so they found the
25:02eleven and those who were with them gathered together and they said the Lord has risen indeed and of course we all
25:09said Alleluia right he has risen indeed and he has appeared to Simon and note
25:15the clarity the confidence that they have with a right understanding of scripture
25:20and then they told what had happened on the road and how he was known to them in the breaking of the bread and I am
25:27pretty sure based upon how the apostles handled the biblical texts from this point on that they wanted to know what
25:34did Jesus teach you and so they were then instructed by cleopas and this other disciple in a proper understanding
25:41of God’s word which gave them even more confidence but gave them a proper
25:46understanding of all the things that have been accomplished in their days so all of that being said let me point
25:52something out here when I was a Nazarene I would have highlighted the text conduct yourselves with fear throughout
25:58the time of your Exile and I would have done everything possible to make sure I was conducting myself with fear but
26:03here’s the thing when we recognize that all of scripture points to Christ then we can note something important about
26:10sanctification by the way scripture is unapologetically clear on this point God
26:16Wills for you to be Sanctified did you know that and absolutely that’s the case
26:21but note here sanctification doesn’t play take place apart from Christ and him crucified listen to our epistle text
26:28if you call on him as father who judges him partially according to each one’s
26:33Deeds well then conduct yourselves with fear throughout the time of your Exile knowing that you were ransomed from the
26:39feudal ways inherited from your forefathers not with perishable things such as silver or gold but with the
26:45precious blood of Christ like that of a lamb without blemish or spot isn’t it interesting that every one of
26:51the Apostles always speak of sanctification only by understanding and
26:57keeping at the center of it the fact that Christ was crucified for all of our sins and that we were ransomed we were
27:06redeemed from the feudal ways inherited from our forefathers which they got from Satan in the garden and not with
27:12perishable things such as silver or gold but you and I were ransomed by the very precious blood of Christ like that of a
27:19lamb without blemish or spot it is only through the gospel in Christ and him crucified for our sins
27:26and the key that unlocks all of the scriptures which is Christ himself if
27:31you were to kind of think of it in terms of this way you know a cross looks kind of like a key if you were to think about it right
27:37so think of it that way that is the key that unlocks all of the Bible and only
27:42then will you understand how good works work so that you recognize that we are saved by grace through faith apart from
27:49Works therefore we are set free to do good works and only the cross makes sense of those
27:55two statements because that’s how the Bible is laid out without Christ we cannot understand this Christ is the
28:02glue that holds all the disparate pieces together he is the box top that gives us
28:07the ability to put the pieces together in a way that makes sense he is everything for you and for I and it is
28:14absolutely true that he has redeemed us through his Precious Blood he took your
28:20sins upon himself on the cross mine as well bled and died for them and then cast his sins behind our sins behind his
28:27back and he will remember them no more um
28:33so brothers and sisters we have been purified then through the
28:38obedience to the truth and the truth is that Christ has died for our sins and
28:43obedience to that means trusting in Jesus for the Forgiveness of our sins therefore having been set free from sin
28:50death in the devil and ransomed and redeemed we are now by the power of the Holy Spirit able to sincerely love each
28:57other with a brotherly love earnestly from a pure heart because Christ is the one who’s made our hearts pure and we
29:05have now been born again not of perishable seed you do not need to fear that we have been born of imperishable
29:11seed through the living and abiding word of God and you’ll note that although your body
29:18wear out like a garment because all flesh is like grass and its glory is like the flower of grass my body doesn’t
29:25have much Glory left in it the grass withers the flower Falls but the word of the Lord remains forever and this word
29:32is the good news that has been preached to you so take solace in this brothers and sisters you are not those who are
29:39left in the dark you have been given the key it’s sitting in your pocket right now and Christ today has opened up the
29:45scriptures to you to give you comfort and assurance and understanding of what he has done for you so we can with these
29:52Apostles with these Disciples of Jesus cleopas and the rest say Alleluia Christ is risen he is risen indeed Alleluia
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