The Gospel of Luke

This is devotional is written by Paul Blandford. Paul is the volunteer king!

Luke 9:28-36

The transfiguration

28 About eight days after Jesus said this, he took Peter, John and James with him and went up onto a mountain to pray. 29 As he was praying, the appearance of his face changed, and his clothes became as bright as a flash of lightning. 30 Two men, Moses and Elijah, appeared in glorious splendour, talking with Jesus. 31 They spoke about his departure,[a] which he was about to bring to fulfilment at Jerusalem. 32 Peter and his companions were very sleepy, but when they became fully awake, they saw his glory and the two men standing with him. 33 As the men were leaving Jesus, Peter said to him, ‘Master, it is good for us to be here. Let us put up three shelters – one for you, one for Moses and one for Elijah.' (He did not know what he was saying.)

34 While he was speaking, a cloud appeared and covered them, and they were afraid as they entered the cloud. 35 A voice came from the cloud, saying, ‘This is my Son, whom I have chosen; listen to him.' 36 When the voice had spoken, they found that Jesus was alone. The disciples kept this to themselves and did not tell anyone at that time what they had seen.

Reflection

What a mind-blowing experience this must have been for the disciples coming after dramatic events and startling teaching in the preceding days. They see Jesus "changed" and talking with Moses and Elijah. Peter's reaction is to build tents, as he would have done at the Feast of Tabernacles, which commemorated the presence of God with the Israelites in the wilderness. The cloud of God's presence envelops them and they hear God speak "This is my Son, My Chosen One, Listen to him!". Here we have God's assertion of Jesus's identity, (cf his baptism), confirmation of Peter's confession that Jesus is the Messiah, and a command. (ref. Deut 18:15 "The lord will give you a prophet like me, who is one of your own people, listen to him.) Jesus is declared greater than Moses and Elijah, The Law and the Prophets, and his teaching's supercede, interpret and fulfil the OT.

What hit me from this was that God kept it simple for the disciples. There is no explanation of what's going to happen or secret information, but just "listen to him."

I have been a christian a long time and I was challenged.

I say I want to hear from God, but realise that often I have fears, filters and agendas at work which mean maybe I only hear what I would like to hear, or what fits into my existing frameworks (like Peter building tents). I need to listen – pay attention and process the raw material of Jesus's teaching and way of living, and (Mark1:15) change the way I think and act, now that the kingdom of God is at hand.

Try taking a passage from a gospel and time to listen to God without an agenda and allow God to radically change the way you think and live.

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