One of the most incredible events some of the disciples experienced was being with Jesus on the Mount of Transfiguration. In Matthew 16:28 Jesus states, “Assuredly, I say to you, there are some standing here who shall not taste death till they see the Son of Man coming in His kingdom”, (NKJV). In all three of the synoptic Gospels, this promise is prior to the Transfiguration. So, we must assume that Jesus is telling His disciples that something remarkable is about to happen. When Jesus goes up onto the Mount of Transfiguration he takes with him Peter, James, and John, who are commonly called the inner circle. We read again from Matthew’s gospel, “Now after six days Jesus took Peter, James, and John his brother, led them up on a high mountain by themselves; and he was transfigured before them. His face shone like the sun, and His clothes became as white as the light. And behold, Moses and Elijah appeared to them, talking with Him. Then Peter answered and said, “Lord, it is good for us to be here; if you wish, let me make here three tabernacles: one for you, one for Moses, and one for Elijah.” While he was still speaking, behold, a bright cloud overshadowed them; and suddenly a voice came out of the cloud, saying, “This is My beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased. Hear Him!” (Matt. 17:1-5 NKJV).
The Transfiguration was certainly a foretaste of heaven. The selected apostles were able to see what Jesus is going to be like in glory. Moses and Elijah were the two greatest prophets of the Old Testament. They are there with Jesus at this moment in time representing the law and the prophets respectively, and the fulfillment of the predictions regarding the Messiah. Peter’s suggestion reflects his thought process thinking of the Feast of Tabernacles, which celebrates the bounty of fruit that God has brought forth. But this was not a time for work or labor, but rather a time to simply worship the Lord Jesus Christ. Sometimes we just need to be amazed at the feet of the Lord Jesus Christ and sit and worship Him.
Many have declared that Jesus was a great leader, a good example, and a good influence, or maybe even that he was a great prophet, but God has a very different opinion. God’s desire is that we know the Lord Jesus Christ as the Son of God, who is the beloved above all others. The voice of the heavenly Father interrupted Peter’s thoughts about building booths. These are the same words that God spoke when Jesus was baptized. When we understand that Jesus is the Son of God we start at a point of reference where we are embracing the profound revelation of Scripture and the best response that we can make is to worship Him.
Recently I preached on the salvation of the thief on the cross next to Jesus who Jesus told, “Today you will be with me in paradise”. Think of that individual waking up on the other side of eternity in the glorious presence of the Lord Jesus Christ. He was the first to see Jesus in His permanent glorified state, even though he was the last to see Him as He was dying. Now that it is Jesus’s desire to bring us into the Father’s presence and that’s why God said, “This is my Son, whom I love; with him I am well please. Listen to him!” (Matt. 17:5 NIV). Let’s make sure this coming week that we are spending time listening to the Lord Jesus Christ.
Rejoicing in our Savior,
Pastor Rich Sivo