That same day two of Jesus’ followers were walking to the village of Emmaus, seven miles from Jerusalem. Then one of them, Cleopas, replied, “You must be the only person in Jerusalem who hasn’t heard about all the things that have happened there the last few days.”
Then one of them, Cleopas, replied, “You must be the only person in Jerusalem who hasn’t heard about all the things that have happened there the last few days.”Luke 24:13, 18
What questions did you come up with when you read this section? The one consistent question that readers have responded with is who is Cleopas? So let’s look at that one first.
Who was Cleopas, Clopas, Cleophas,Alphaeus?
As you can see from the names above there is significant variation between the forms in which the name appears
(Κλεόπας, Kleópas, “renowned father”): One of the two disciples whom Jesus met on the way to Emmaus (Luk_24:18). The name is a contraction of Cleopatros, not identical with Clopas of Joh_19:25. See also ALPHAEUS; CLOPAS. The same as Alpheus, father of the Apostles James and Jude, Mar_3:18, and husband of the sister of the virgin Mary. Joh_19:25. He was one of the seventy disciples
Clopas; Cleophas (Κλωπᾶς, Klōpás): The former in the Revised Version (British and American), the latter in the King James Version, of Joh_19:25, for the name of the husband of one of the women who stood by the cross of Christ. Upon the philological ground of a variety in pronunciation of the Hebrew root, sometimes identified with Alpheus, the father of James the Less. Said by tradition to have been the brother of Joseph, the husband of Mary. Distinguished from Cleopas, a Greek word, while Clopas is Aramaic
Alphaeus (Ἀλφαῖος, Alphaı́os;
(1) The father of the second James in the list of the apostles (Mat_10:3; Mar_3:18; Luk_6:15; Act_1:13).
(2) The father of Levi, the publican (Mar_2:14). Levi is designated as Matthew in the Gospel of Mt (Mat_9:9). There is no other reference to this Alpheus.
Some writers, notably Weiss, identify the father of Levi with the father of the second James. He says that James and Levi were undoubtedly brothers; but that seems improbable. If they were brothers they would quite likely be associated as are James and John, Andrew and Peter. Chrysostom says James and Levi had both been tax-gatherers before they became followers of Jesus. This tradition would not lend much weight as proof that they were brothers, for it might arise through identifying the two names. The western manuscripts identify them and read James instead of Levi in Mar_2:14. This, however, is undoubtedly a corruption of the text. If it had been the original it would be difficult to explain the substitution of an unknown Levi for James who is well known. Many writers identify Alpheus, the father of the second James, with Clopas of Joh_19:25. This had early become a tradition, and Chrysostom believed they were the same person.
This identification rests on four suppositions, all of which are doubtful:
(a) That the Mary of Clopas was the same as the Mary who was the mother of the second James. There is a difference of opinion as to whether “Mary of Clopas” should be understood to be the wife of Clopas or the daughter of Clopas, but the former is more probable. We know from Mat_27:56 and Mar_15:40 that there was a James who was the son of Mary, and that this Mary belonged to that little group of women that was near Jesus it the time of the crucifixion. It is quite likely that this Mary is the one referred to in Joh_19:25. That would make James, the son of Mary of Mat_27:56, the son of Mary of Clopas. But Mary was such a common name In the New Testament that this supposition cannot be proven.
(b) That the James, who was the son of Mary, was the same person as the James, the son of Alpheus. Granting the supposition under (a), this would not prove the identity of Clopas and Alpheus unless this supposition can also be proven, but it seems impossible to either prove it or disprove it.
(c) That Alpheus and Clopas are different variations of a common original, and that the variation has arisen from different pronunciations of the first letter ח (“ḥ”) of the Aramaic original. There are good scholars who both support and deny this theory.
(d) That Clopas had two names as was common at that time; but there is nothing to either substantiate or disprove this theory. It seems impossible to determine absolutely whether or not Alpheus, the father of the second James, and Clopas of Joh_19:25 are the same person, but it is quite probable that they are.
Part of the reason for the multiplicity of proper names is that there was no standardisation. Hence there are many different ways of spelling the name with no indication that the names signify different individuals. A quick reading of the above information indicates there is a some debate over just who is being referred to with the names Alphaeus, Cleopas, Cleophas and Clopas. A further interesting element on the matter of Cleopas’ name is that only one of the two disciples on the road to Emmaus was named. This seems to indicate that the named one was well known (as above) and the other wasn’t. There have been all sorts of attempts to figure out who the other one was. The identities suggested have been Cleopas’ wife, his son or Philip the deacon. But the truth is we don’t know because (s)he is not named. Anything attempt to name the person is pure speculation.
True friendship is when two friends can walk in opposite directions and yet remain side by side.Anon
Just because you are idle, don’t assume God is.Mona Siregar
One of the greatest challenges in life is the ability to walk in confidence & humility at the same time!Anon
Be The Type Of Person You Want To Meet.Robb Thompson