Reading: Luke 23, 24
Does my heart burn when I read the Scriptures? Does it burn when the Word of God is taught? I have to confess that it doesn’t always. When did someone else’s heart burn when I taught from the Scriptures? I'm afraid to speculate on that one.
For the two men traveling the road to Emmaus an encounter with Jesus resulted in heartburn.
“They asked each other, ‘Were not our hearts burning within us while he talked with us on the road and opened the Scriptures to us?’” (Luke 24:32, NIV).
In the physical realm, heartburn isn’t a pleasant thing. I suspect that there might have been some uncomfortable moments for these men as they listened to Jesus, whom they didn’t recognize, explain things from the Old Testament that they should already have understood.
But more likely the burning hearts were caused as these two men instinctively recognized the voice of God even when they didn’t see God in this “stranger” who was walking beside them. They knew Truth when they heard it and it impacted their lives.
The Scriptures say that the disciples were “kept from recognizing him” (24:16, NIV). In this case they needed to focus on the message more than the messenger—even when that messenger was the Lord Himself. It’s hard to imagine that knowing it was Jesus walking with them might have been a distraction and detract from the heart burning message He wanted to deliver to them, but for some reason the Lord hid His identity from them until after the sermon.
Their hearts burned.
Sometimes my exposure to the Word of God ends more in a dull thud than it does in flaming fire. Perhaps that highlights the reason why I need to ask God before I read His Word, go into the service or a study, or teach from the Bible, to give me and the others present, a good case of holy heartburn. The Lord knows how much we need it.