Chapter twenty-four begins with the resurrection, with basically the same detail that the other Gospel writers included (vs. 1-12). However, the rest of the chapter is unique to Luke. As two of his followers slowly walked back home to Emmaus on Sunday, “about seven miles from Jerusalem” (vs. 13), Jesus appeared to them, but they were unable to recognize him. It must have been interesting for him to listen to their perspective on the events of the previous couple of days. Sadly, even though they heard of his resurrection (vs. 22-23), they did not believe that he was truly the Messiah, only “a prophet” (vs. 19) who they “had hoped…[would] redeem Israel” (vs. 21). He scolded them for their lack of belief and worked his way through the Scriptures showing them how all of these things were prophesied and required to have taken place (vs. 25-27). What a shock when their eyes were finally opened as he began to eat a meal with them in their home, then immediately disappeared. They finally had the proof they needed, more than the information from the women which they had not believed (vs. 30-35).
While they regrouped with the Eleven to tell their story, Jesus appeared again. Peter had already seen him (vs. 34), so this was getting to be a regular occurrence, yet they still had a hard time believing it (vs. 37). Graciously, Jesus offered them several proofs, including eating “in front of them” (vs. 39-43).
As he had done with the two en route to Emmaus, Jesus taught them from the Scriptures how he was to “suffer and would rise from the dead on the third day” (vs. 46). (Verse 44 is a wonderful statement in which Jesus gave his acknowledgement of the Hebrew Scriptures as inspired and authoritative.) Not only that but they, who “are witnesses of these things” (vs. 48), would be his spokesmen proclaiming “repentance for the forgiveness of sins…to all nations, beginning in Jerusalem” (vs. 47), exactly where Acts picks up. Luke ends with a brief account of Jesus’ ascension that he would expand upon in volume two, the Acts (vs. 50-53).