The story of the transfiguration of Jesus is one of the most discussed and disputed in the New Testament (Mark 9:2 and following).
What makes this event so amazing?
First, the transfiguration revealed Jesus to the disciples. This is indeed God’s Son. He must be heard.
Second, the transfiguration showed that God had worked and would work through the coming of the Messiah. When the voice came from heaven, the disciples heard “firsthand” that what Jesus came to do would be fulfilled. He must be listened to.
When Jesus told the disciples He would be killed and on the third day be raised from the dead, the disciples had a hard time comprehending what He meant. God’s word to the disciples was that they must hear and obey. God’s plan of redemption would be carried out in the coming of Jesus. This was the plan given before the foundation of the world (1 Peter 1:18-20).
Third, the transfiguration shows that Jesus was both human and divine. The white raimant (white was unusual in Israel because it couldn’t be kept clean), Elijah and Moses, and the voice from heaven all pointed to the divinity of Christ.
Fourth, the transfiguration reveals God’s plan to transform sinful humanity. The biblical writers understood what God came to do. He did not come to reform us but to transform us.
The word for transfiguration and transformation are the same. The word is where we get the word metamorphosis. Like the butterfly, those who trust in Christ are changed, not in some small way but totally and completely.
As we think of the transfiguration, let us also think of our transformation. Because of His death and life, we become new creatures. “Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, there is a new creation; old things have passed away, and look, new things have come” (2 Corinthians 5:17).
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