Summary: Aside from being Super Bowl Sunday, today is also known as Transfiguration Sunday in our liturgical Christian calendar, a day to remember this remarkable event, and look at how it impacts us and what effect is has on us today as Christians and followers o
The Transfiguration; Coming Boldly Before the Throne
Today is a very special day for football fans. Today is Super Bowl Sunday. The culmination of the season, where the two, arguably, best teams in the NFL face off to prove to the world that they are the best of the best. Today is also a very special day for those of you who don’t really like football, as today signifies the end of the season, it’s over now, at least until the fall. The Giants and the Patriots are the 2 teams playing today, and while they both are in this final game, their roads to get there have been very different. The Giants are somewhat surprising to most fans to be one of the final 2, while the Pats have gone undefeated all year long, no one has beaten them. The Giants have quite a mountain to overcome.
And speaking of mountains, this leads into today’s scripture reading, Matthew 17:1-8.
And after six days Jesus took with him Peter and James, and John his brother, and led them up a high mountain by themselves. And he was transfigured before them, and his face shone like the sun, and his clothes became white as light. And behold, there appeared to them Moses and Elijah, talking with him. And Peter said to Jesus, “Lord, it is good that we are here. If you wish, I will make three tents here, one for you and one for Moses and one for Elijah.” He was still speaking when behold a bright cloud overshadowed them, and a voice from the cloud said, “This is my beloved Son, with whom I am well pleased; listen to him.” When the disciples heard this, they fell on their faces and were terrified. But Jesus came and touched them saying, “Rise and have no fear.” And when they lifted up their eyes, they say no one but Jesus only.
Aside from being Super Bowl Sunday, today is also known as Transfiguration Sunday in our liturgical Christian calendar, a day to remember this remarkable event, and look at how it impacts us and what effect is has on us today as Christians and followers of Jesus Christ. So what is it that we need to know about the Transfiguration to apply this to our daily walk?
1. This was an eyewitness account. The disciples had struggled with and not really understood some of Jesus’ teachings the week before, primarily the aspect of his upcoming death. In chapter 6 verse 22 Peter is the one who stood up and said, “Far be it from you Lord! This shall never happen to you!” This was a confusing and troubling lesson that Jesus was trying to teach his disciples, but they just were not getting it. So Jesus took them up to the top of Mt. Hermon, just Jesus, James, John, and Peter. And there, His divine nature was revealed to them. These 3 disciples could not really be effective ministers after the resurrection until they truly knew that Jesus has ALL the power and ALL the authority. It is from this encounter that they were able to later say:
“And the word became flesh and dwelt among us and WE HAVE SEEN his glory” –John 1:14
“For we did not follow cleverly devised myths when we made known to you the power and coming of our Lord Jesus Christ, but WE WERE EYEWITNESSES of his majesty. For when he received honor and glory from God the Father, and the voice was borne to him by the Majestic Glory, “This is my beloved Son, with whom I am well pleased,” WE OURSELVES HEARD this very voice born from heaven, for we were with him on the holy mountain” –2 Peter 1:16-18
Having an eyewitness is very important. We talk much about Faith in our Christian culture, and the Bible gives us the definition of this in Hebrews 11:1, that “faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen”, but the Bible also gives us the historical eye-witness account of what really happened by the men and women who were there. Now, sometimes an eyewitness does not help us too much, as any parent of more than 1 child can attest to. When you are sitting on your couch and hear a loud crash coming from the kitchen, then the pitter patter, well, not really pitter patter at that moment, more like the blazing thundering of your 2 children’s footsteps running to you, with the child in front yelling, “Mom, I saw him do it!” and the child behind, in tears, saying, “I didn’t do anything!” That is where the wisdom of being a parent comes in to decipher what really happened, and the eyewitness may not help much.