2020 02 23 Gill Khoury THE TRANSFIGURATION
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Create DateFebruary 25, 2020
Last UpdatedFebruary 25, 2020

 

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The Transfiguration - Matt 17:1-9                               Gill Khoury – Sermon Summary - 23 Feb 2020

 

In Matthew  16 there are 4 major incidents that happen that provide a preamble to the Transfiguration

 

The Pharisees and Sadducees demand a sign

Jesus says NO

Peter recognizes Jesus as the Messiah

Jesus acknowledges Peter

Jesus Introduces the idea that he is going to die

Peter says no way, and Jesus rebukes him

Jesus introduces the idea of opposing concepts

 

Matthew 16:24-28 New International Version (NIV)

The Transfiguration shows the outcome of what Jesus did on earth. The outcome of that radical love is transformation.  It means a radical change like Rom 12:1-2

 

The Law and prophets were at times opposing concepts.

The Israelites couldn’t keep the Law and the prophets made that very clear.

 

Moses and Elijah disappear  after the cloud descends.  Matt 17: 5-9

 

Jesus fulfils both the Law and the Prophets. He is the one to listen to. All things come together in him.

 

The reason why Jesus took the disciples up the mountain were many.

  • To show the outcome of his radical love
  • To encourage and give hope
  • To show them what the future held despite the trials they would face

 

Peter never forgot what he saw

2 Peter 1:16-18 New International Version (NIV)

16 For we did not follow cleverly devised stories when we told you about the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ in power, but we were eyewitnesses of his majesty. 17 He received honor and glory from God the Father when the voice came to him from the Majestic Glory, saying, “This is my Son, whom I love; with him I am well pleased.” 18 We ourselves heard this voice that came from heaven when we were with him on the sacred mountain

 

So what about us?

 

Six days later" is an odd way to start a story. But it's not the start. The story starts 6 days earlier, when Jesus invites his disciples on the way of radical self-giving love, the way of the cross.

At first Peter refuses to believe Jesus, and 6 days later God says, "Listen to him!"

 

The story of the Transfiguration is not about glory, it's about the cross. Its God's affirmation of the way of self-sacrificial love. It looks like a picture of triumphalism. But no. It's not. It's about the humility, powerlessness, self-emptying and suffering of radical love. Jesus, who has advocated such radical self-giving, appears in resurrection light.

The way of dying Jesus describes is a way of rising. The Transfiguration affirms what Jesus said 6 days earlier: lose your life in love, and you will be given life that cannot be taken from you, a life that is eternal. Love is the glory of God. Love fulfils the Law and the Prophets. The cross is the way of love. Love is the reason and heart of our faith.

When we love we shine with the light of God. When we forgive, we have "died and gone to heaven". When we stand up for justice, we taste the resurrection. The world will resist us and make us pay the cost. The world may ridicule us and call us failures. But the glory of God shines in us, and the light of eternal life radiates from us. We can take courage then, and give ourselves to a life of love and self-sacrifice. For love, and love alone, is the light of God.

 



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