Luke 24:31b—If Jesus had the same physical body after His resurrection, why did His disciples not recognize Him?
Problem: These two disciples walked with Jesus, talked with Him, and ate with Him and still did not recognize Him. Other disciples had the same experience (see verses below). If He rose in the same physical body (cf. Luke 24:39; John 20:27), then why didn’t they recognize Him.
Solution: Jesus did rise in the numerically same body of flesh and bones in which He died (see comments on 1 Cor. 15:37). There were many reasons why He was not immediately recognized by His disciples: 1. Dullness—Luke 24:25–26 2. Disbelief—John 20:24–25 3. Disappointment—John 20:11–15 4. Dread—Luke 24:36–37 5. Dimness—John 20:1, 14–15 6. Distance—John 21:4 7. Different Clothes—John 19:23–24; cf. 20:6–8
Notice, however, two important things: the problem was only temporary, and before the appearance was over they were absolutely convinced that it was the same Jesus in the same physical body of flesh, bones, and scars that He had before the resurrection! And they went out of His presence to turn the world upside down, fearlessly facing death, because they had not the slightest doubt that He had conquered death in the same physical body in which He had experienced it.
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This excerpt is from When Critics Ask: A Popular Handbook on Bible Difficulties (Wheaton, Ill.: Victor Books, 1992). © 2014 Norman Geisler and Thomas Howe. All rights reserved. Used by permission. Click here to purchase this book.