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Previous Challenge Entry (Level 3 – Advanced)
Topic: Hospitality (02/07/05)

TITLE: A Tomb With A View
By michael e. evans


The road home was quiet, compared to the bustling streets of the city. Disappointment drowned our conversation in amusing, sarcasm. It wasn’t until the stranger opened our eyes that the week’s events made sense.

“Etraordinary weekend, huh?”

“That’s the understatement of the century?”

“I’ve never seen so many people.”

“Well, that sort of thing tends to draw a crowd.”

“It was a miracle that we were able to find a place.”

“Not really. They’re common enough. Especially in such a big city.”

“Yes, but that was no common place.”

“You can say that again. No Inn at home could hold a candle to it. The craftsmanship was exquisite. Did you see that stone work?”

“What’s really amazing is that a rich man would part with such a thing -- even for a few days.”

“Now that is a miracle.”

“What a location.”

“Best views of Jerusalem.”

“From that vantage point -- you could see forever.”

“They took great care of him.”

“To be served so, in this life, would be something.”

“It rivaled any Roman bath. Did you see those sheets and napkins?”

“Finest Linen.”

“Aloes and Myrrh aren’t cheap either, my friend.”

“How about the security?

“We should all be so well protected. A whole quarternion of Roman Soldiers?”

“And don’t forget Herod’s own seal at the door.”

“That was a nice touch.”

We had heard footsteps approaching, but the stranger’s voice startled us as he entered our fainthearted farce.

“Sounds like a nice place.” He paused, but we could not respond.

“A man could get a lot of rest in such a place.” He continued, apparently clueless to what we were talking about. We played along.

“Rest, indeed.” I said. “Refreshed. Rejuvinated.”

“Depends on who you talk to, but some might even say, Resurrected.” I cringed at Cleopas’ choice of words.

“Pardon me for eves dropping,” the stranger continued, “but I don’t think I’ve ever seen such an Inn around these parts.”

The farce was over. The stranger’s ignorance jolted us back to grim reality.

“Surely you are a stranger in Jerusalem,” Cleopas spoke cautiously, “and hast thou not known the things which are come to pass there in these days?”

“What things?” The stranger querried.

So Cleopas told him, “Concerning Jesus of Nazareth, which was a prophet mighty in deed and word before God and all the people: And how the chief priests and our rulers delivered him to be condemned to death, and have curcified him. But we trusted that it had been he which should have redeemed Israel: and beside all this, today is the third day since these things were done.”

I could no longer hold my piece and interrupted Cleopas.

“Yea, and certain women also of our company made us astonished, which were early at the sepulchre; And when they found not his body, they came, saying, that they had also seen a vision of angels, which said that he was alive. And certain of them which were with us went to the sepulchre, and found it even so as the women had said: but him they saw not.”

“So this room with a view is really a tomb with a view?”

The stranger’s ability to laugh at such a thing exacerbated the horror of our farce. And then, beginning at Moses and all the prophets, he expounded unto us in all the scriptures the things concerning himself. As we drew nigh to Emmaus, he acted as though he would go no further. So we begged him to stay with us.
“It is evening.” We said. “The day is far spent.” And he tarried with us. He ate meat with us. He took bread, and blessed it, and brake it, and gave it to us. And our eyes were opened, and we knew him, and he vanished out of our sight. And we said one to another, “Did not our hearts burn within us, while he talked with us by the way, and while he opened to us the scriptures?”

So, we returned to Jerusalem, and found the eleven and them that were with them. And they assured us that the Lord was risen indeed. When we told them what had happened, and how he revealed himself to us in the breaking of bread, they wanted to know where he had gone. But we could only tell them what he had already told us all.

He is gone to prepare a place for us.

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