Elijah reappears and is eclipsed
A once in a lifetime experience is described here in Matthew 17. What can we learn from it?
1/ transfiguration. Verses 1 - 2.
This was six days after What is described at the end of chapter 16. It was up a high mountain but we are not sure where. Mountains in scripture is often where God reveals himself to man.
The main participant is Jesus. The three disciples, Peter, James and John are with Him.
Up on the mountain Jesus appearance was transfigured or transformed. This means being changed from the inside out. It was the revealing of God Himself. Jesus who was fully man is also fully God.
One day those of us who know Him will witness what Peter, James and John saw!!
2/. Conversation verses 3 -4
The first conversation is between Jesus and Moses and Elijah. We don't know what they looked like but why did these 2 appear.
Well Moses was the Old Testament. He was the one through whom God gave His law. Elijah on the other hand was the guardian of the law. He did miracles. He was a zealous man for God. He represented the prophets. Between the two they represented the OT. The OT pointed to this man Jesus. Now they were having a congregation.
Luke tells us they spoke about the fact that Jesus was soon to die.
There was also a conversation between Jesus and Peter.
Peter exclaimed how good it was to witness this. He wanted to build three tents. Three dwelling places!
Peter didn't really know what to say. He is still in denial about the cross that is still to come. He wanted a Christ without the cross.
We would still be in our sins if Jesus had stayed on the mountain instead of going to the mount of Crucifixion.
3/. The redirection. Verses 5 - 9.
While Peter was still speaking, God interrupted. A bright cloud overshadowed them. A voice said This is My Son who brings me great joy. Listen to Him.
God makes no mention of Moses or Elijah. The spotlight is shining entirely on Christ. They are to listen only to Him. Moses and Elijah were significant but Jesus was the important one.
They are to look to Jesus. Verse 6 tells us they were terrified but verse 7 tells us Jesus came and touched them. He reassures them and tells them not to be afraid.
When they looked up Moses and Elijah were gone and they only saw Jesus.
Jesus the son of God greater in every way.
Verse 9 tells us they came down the mountain Jesus commanded them to tell no one what they witnessed until Jesus was raised from the dead. Why? Jesus death was to come first. Jesus was to take up the cross before the glory could be revealed.
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