“Then He opened their minds so they could understand the Scriptures. He told them, ‘This is what is written: The Messiah will suffer and rise from the dead on the third day, and repentance for the forgiveness of sins will be preached in his name to all nations...’” –Luke 24:45-47
In John 19:30, Jesus punctuated His life and work by looking to heaven while on the cross and spoke the words, “It is finished!” We have come to understand that the payment and ransom for sin and death was now complete. This transaction marked the end and the beginning. Jesus’s time on earth had come to an end. Yet, it marked the beginning of the greatest spiritual movement ever known to man, the Church. This transition, however, was not seamless. It was abrupt and earthshaking. Jesus’s ministry was brought to a sudden halt at Calvary. It left his followers dumbfounded because of their slow understanding of all things pertaining to Jesus. Thus, Jesus’s post-resurrection appearances to the disciples jumpstarted or reactivated His redemption plan for the world. To do this, He brought the disciples to a place of divine enlightenment (Lk. 24:45). Then, He promised to send the Holy Spirit to empower, encourage and guide the apostles into the age of the Church. Stay with me... Therefore, in verses 31 and 45 of chapter 24, Luke the evangelist, used the same word to explain the disciples’ understanding of what was happening. The greek word dianoigo is used to convey their spiritual awakening. The NIV says, “Then He opened their minds” (v45). This word is used to show that something was completely opened, whereas, before it was closed. It is often used to convey an opening of the eyes, heart or mind. That is to say, Jesus was bringing them into a greater knowledge of who He was, so that, they would embody His ultimate purpose, their purpose and focus their gaze on their new mission. This was illustrated at the ascension of Christ when the angels said to His disciples, “...men of Galilee, why do you stand here looking into the sky” (Acts 1:11)? In other words, they were to reorient their sight, minds and hearts towards the proclamation, the kerygma, the preaching of the name of Jesus to the world (Lk. 24:47). Lord, open our eyes, too, that we will see the world saved by your word.
In Christ and Him Crucified,