Hidden in Plain Sight
Luke 24:16 (ESV) – But their eyes were kept from recognizing him.
There are often subtle details in a biblical passage that we miss that have monster implications. This happens all the time because we’ve been trained to see the passage in a certain way through previous readings. For example, the story of Abraham taking Isaac up the mountain to sacrifice him has a subtle statement from Abraham telling the servants traveling with them to stay at the base of the mountain because he and the boy were going to worship and then come back (Genesis 22:5). In this little remark, we see something about Abraham’s faith and belief. He was planning to return with the boy even though he knew the command of the LORD.
Our passage today offers another subtle insight. We read in Luke 24:16, “But their eyes were kept from recognizing him.” The context of this passage is the story of Jesus’ appearance to the two men on the Road to Emmaus. Jesus joins these two men walking down the road discussing the events of Jesus’ death and resurrection. Luke records that the men were kept from recognizing Him.
Notice that subtle word “kept.” It doesn’t say that they didn’t recognize Him. It says they were kept from recognizing Him. That is totally different. Their eyes were made to purposefully not perceive who He was in this moment. What are the implications of this? For starters, we see that God alone carries the power to reveal or conceal Himself from others. People don’t often think about this. But nobody would ever perceive the goodness and grace of God if He didn’t reveal Himself to them. But another implication is not just the positive ability to see, but the work of God in concealing Himself from others. Most never consider this implication. Some believe this is something God would not do. Yet we see this in our text today and in other places of Scripture.
God has His reasons for concealing His true nature and identity from people. His will always drives His acts and decisions. He never acts arbitrarily in any situation. Why did God conceal Jesus’ identity from the two men in this moment? We don’t know. He only reveals His nature later that day and then leaves them instantly. God’s ways are higher than our own. We are not left to dissect God’s ways as much as we are to trust them.
Give thanks today that God has not concealed Himself from you. If you have seen Christ as your Savior, then it is because He was brought into focus by the kindness of God. Pray for those who have yet to see and ask God to remove the veil from them.
Luke 24:16 (ESV) – "But their eyes were kept from recognizing him."
Give thanks today that God has not concealed Himself from you. If you have seen Christ as your Savior, then it is because He was brought into focus by the kindness of God.
Reflection & Journal:
- Why do we often miss subtle points in passages of Scripture?
- What does the text today reveal about the work of God in helping us see?
- How does this truth relate to your salvation and current trust in the Lord?
Sign up to receive our daily devotions in your inbox here!