Written on April 12th, 2005 - 12:45AM Last Updated: April 7th, 2006 - 4:57AM
There is an interesting theme seen in the Gospel accounts, which has to do with the Lord's Supper.
Their eyes were opened, and they recognized him, and he vanished out of their sight. (Luke 24:31)
There was a recognition by Jesus' disciples in the "breaking of the bread." When the Lord sat down with them, taking the bread, giving thanks for and then breaking it (Luke 24:30), their eyes were opened. This word, διηνοιχθησαν, literally means "thoroughly opened up." And in Greek, it is written in passive form. The opening up of their eyes was done by someone or something else, not by themselves.
It was at this point that they "recognized" him. This word, επεγνωσαν, is written in the active form; it was something they did, not something done to them. The word is made from the Greek words meaning "know" and a preposition often attached to verbs to intensify their meaning. Thus, they "fully knew" once their eyes were opened.
Once their eyes were opened when He broke the bread, they recognized "αυτον." This word is the common word for "it" or "him." Here it is masculine. Because the word for bread, αρτον, is also masculine, this could be understood to mean that they recognized "it" (the bread) or "Him" (Jesus). Both would be accurate as we will see.
Once they realized who He was, and saw what He had done with the bread, He vanished. This word, αφαντος, literally means to unmanifest. It is made from the negative α and the word for manifest or become visible, φαινομα. Jesus became invisible, no longer seen, no longer manifested—His form was unmanifested from them. But, they were left with the bread He had taken, blessed or given thanks for, and broken for them.
One can see the symbolism here, when read with the testimonies of Christ at His Supper and the apostle Paul to the Corinthians. Because the blessed bread is truly Christ's Body (and the blessed cup His Blood), their eyes were fully opened up as He showed them again His remembrance. As He had commanded them to do, they were to eat this bread for the memorial of Him (Luke 22:19). Not only did they fully recognize Him, as He sat before them breaking the bread—realizing He had risen from the dead as prophesied—but they must have recognized Him in the bread itself as well. Because their eyes had been opened, and they then fully knew Him, He was now able to become unmanifested from them. They were left with His remembrance, that which He had specfically given to them that His presence might remain with them. They were left with Christ, though not as they had expected!
They later recounted this story to the other disciples, how He (or "it", the bread) was recognized by them in the breaking of the bread. Whatever one was the meaning—or perhaps both were—the disciples were made aware that Christ was not dead. He was alive! As He took, gave thanks for, and broke the bread, something happened to them—their eyes were opened. It took more than exposition of the scriptures from the Lord Himself (Luke 24:27); it took this celebration of the Supper, hosted again by the Lord Jesus, for His disciples to truly understand what had happened. Note that Christ kept His word here, as He did not take the cup; for He had promised them that He would not drink again from the fruit of the vine until He drank it new with them in His Father's Kingdom (Luke 22:18).
In studying this, one can see how this Supper is so important. As we follow His command to do it for His remembrance, we come to see Him in ways that we cannot see Him from the scriptures. Although the Father's revelation in the scriptures points us to the Christ, it and they are not the Christ. The scriptures cannot save; but Yahweh's only Son, JesusChrist the Lord, can and does! And it is He—the Lord of all things—present in His Supper which He has left us. Let us come to the Table, and having our eyes opened, fully recognize Him.
As you read this site, you will hopefully come to know Yahweh more fully.
But all of this continuing knowledge is useless unless and until you come into union with Him. I use the word union because it is truly a marriage. It is that deep connection we all seek, for which we most often look in other people. However, the truth is that our hearts will only be fulfilled when we enter that union in fullness with the One Who made us.
This is the grace of God, that He has not stayed distant for us only to worship as Creator. But He has come unto us, even become one of us—in His Son, ChristJesus—in order to share an intimate union with us. He desires such closeness that it truly will envelope our entire life, transforming us into something new and wonderful.
You may have already entered this union with Him and only seek to know Him better through reading here. But if you have not, as you do read, let this Gospel sink into your heart as you read it now.
God loves you, and has cast your sins into the sea. He has sent His only Son as the Savior of the world—that includes you.
That Son, JesusChrist, was born as a man through a virgin who had given her life to Yahweh; He lived without sin, reflected the glory of His Father, God, in all His words and deeds, and was persecuted even unto death because of it.
His death upon a cross was the powerful explosion that separated you from your life of death. It remains for you, now, to enter into that death with Him. As you die to the one you are now, a person separated from God from your many sins, you will be born anew, with a nature predisposed to live rightly. This gift is free to you, with nothing you can do to earn it. It is the mercy of God to offer it to you, as He loves you so much! All you must do is receive it by trusting Him to have delivered you. Simply place your life in His hands and embrace the freedom that came through that death on the cross.
The Gospel is that Jesus did not remain dead, but rose again on the third day after His crucifixion! Death could not hold Him, as He was without sin. And so death will not be able to hold you, as you identify with Him fully through your trust in Him. Let go of yourself and confess Him as Lord of your life. The power of His death and resurrection will work in you all that your Creator has destined for you. You will truly enter a new life and experience that intimate union you have been seeking all of your life.
So ponder these words as you read here of this great God—Yahweh—and all that He has revealed to His creation. Let His Spirit testify to your heart that these words are true, that God is Love, and that He sent His Son so that you might receive the life that is unbound by time and space. As you feel that witness in your heart, simply believe and receive what He is offering to you, even now, and begin your new life as a child of God.
Please write to me and let me know when you take this step, as I will be your brother in Christ—we will be one in Him!
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30It happened, that when he had sat down at the table with them, he took the bread and gave thanks. Breaking it, he gave to them. 31Their eyes were opened, and they recognized him, and he vanished out of their sight. (Luke 24:30-31)