The sun began its slow descent, casting a golden hue on the rugged terrain. At the base of the mountain, a small group of men gathered, their faces etched with curiosity and anticipation. They were the disciples of Jesus, chosen to witness an event that would forever change their lives.
The Transfiguration was a turning point in Jesus’ ministry, a moment when His divinity was revealed in all its glory. But before we delve into this profound experience, let us first understand the context leading up to it.
In the previous chapters, we have explored the disciples’ struggle to comprehend Jesus’ mission and purpose. They had witnessed His miracles and listened intently to His teachings, but still grappled with understanding who He truly was.
And then came the unexpected news. Jesus revealed to them that He would suffer greatly at the hands of men, be crucified, and rise again on the third day. This revelation shook them to their core – how could their beloved teacher endure such pain? Their minds raced with confusion and fear as they tried to make sense of it all.
It is against this emotional backdrop that we ascend with Peter, James, and John up onto a high mountain. The physical journey becomes a metaphor for their spiritual growth and understanding. As they climb higher and leave behind ordinary life below, they prepare themselves for divine revelation.
Finally reaching the pinnacle point of their ascent, something extraordinary occurs. Jesus peels back His humanity like layers of clothing until his divinity is fully unveiled before their eyes. His face shines like the sun itself; His garments become radiant as light envelops Him.
In this moment of transfiguration, Peter’s breath catches in his throat as he witnesses something beyond anything he had ever imagined or experienced before with Jesus. It is as if heaven itself has touched this mountain peak.
And there beside Jesus stands Moses and Elijah, two towering figures from the Old Testament. Moses, with his face shining after encountering God on Mount Sinai, and Elijah, the prophet whose coming was foretold in the book of Malachi. These two men represent the law and the prophets, pointing towards Jesus as the fulfillment of all that came before.
Overwhelmed by this surreal sight, Peter blurts out his desire to build tabernacles for Jesus, Moses, and Elijah – a misguided attempt to place them on equal footing. But God’s voice thunders from above, correcting Peter and affirming that Jesus alone is to be worshipped.
As we reflect on this powerful message, we are reminded of our own tendency to prioritize things other than Jesus in our lives. We seek fulfillment in achievements or possessions; we idolize relationships or worldly success. But God’s words echo through time – “This is my beloved Son; listen to Him.”
In their fear and awe, the disciples shrink back. But Jesus reaches out and touches them gently, soothing their trembling hearts with words of reassurance – “Fear not.” It is a reminder that no matter how daunting life may seem or how uncertain our path becomes, we can find comfort in knowing that Jesus is with us every step of the way.
And as they descend from that sacred mountaintop, their hearts forever changed by what they have witnessed and understood, one truth remains clear – they saw no one but Jesus only.
In this journey towards revelation and understanding, may we too shift our focus towards seeing only Jesus in every aspect of our lives. For it is through Him alone that salvation is found; it is through Him alone that true understanding dawns upon us like a radiant sunrise on a mountaintop.