8th Sunday after Epiphany
Scripture: Exodus 24:12-18,St Matthew 17:1-9
The Greeks understood that a transfiguration was much more than a transformation from the inside that reveals itself on the outside. It is an inside experience that causes a total change in the spiritual life and completely changes the individual who then becomes a new person.
We can see that first reference in Exodus when we read about Moses and his encounter with the Lord on the mountaintop. God called him to the mountaintop where he encountered God’s presence. He spent 40 days on that mountain with the presence of God. It was there that God gave him two stones tablets with the Ten Commandments. God then told him to return to the people below. As Moses descended from the mountain, the people could not and would not look at him; his face was frightening, as bright as the sun and his clothes as bright as a million candles. The people were afraid to look at him!
The transfiguration of Jesus was the Lord’s way to teach Peter, James and John as well as all of us who Jesus really was. Can we even imagine that experience? The disciples saw Jesus talking with Moses and Elijah. It was believed that they would return from the dead, the sign that the Messiah had come. This was evidence to the disciples that Jesus was truly the Messiah.The transfiguration of Jesus was a divine key that would enable the disciples to carry Jesus’ message to the whole world. They did not fully understand that transfiguration of Jesus until after his crucifixion, death and resurrection from the dead.The people remembered the voice heard at Jesus’ baptism as he came up from the water: “This is my beloved Son; I am well pleased with him.”
There are times in scripture that God tried to get His people to understand how much He loved them and offered His only beloved Son as a ransom for our sins. Time and time again God showed His great love for all of us.
Recall the 40 years journey in the wilderness. The people were up in arms against Moses for bringing them out into that wilderness journey. They were dying of thirst and starving to death. God told Moses to strike a rock and water came pouring out of it for all to drink and to water their animals. To feed them, God sent manna to fall from heaven and quail to provide meat to fill their bellies.
The transfigurations in the Holy Scripture are the gifts from the Heavenly Father to give ample evidence of the depth of His love for us. It is my deepest desire and hope that the Holy Father will give each and every one of us a transfiguration encounter to experience the love of God for each of us. And that encounter will equip us to walk daily with Him regardless of what is happening in our lives.
Remember that God loves you and I love you too.
Let us pray.