Monday, February 12, 2007

Seeing God in Action: Transfigurartion C Luke 9:28-43

Mysteries surrounded Jesus' ministry. Mysterious power gave way to mysterious visions for Jesus' friends. Unexplained actions and wonders happened right before their noses.

Today we are invited into two mystery shrouded high-points in Jesus' ministry in this one short section of scripture Luke 9:28-43.

The first highpoint happened up on a mountain and the second one took place in a deep valley of suffering where the daemonic was at work and God's power in the world was unseen.

The first highpoint must have been something to see. Jesus went up to the top of a mountain with his friends. On top of the mountain Jesus' appearance changed. He was there shining in his glory up on top of the mountain. Two of the ancient prophets, Moses and Elijah, were there up on top of the mountain too.

What a sight. Jesus dazzling white revealing the glory of God not for all the world to see but just for three of Jesus friends to witness. Peter, James, and John were in awe. Their friend dazzling bright like no earthly person could have made him. They were seeing the glory of God revealed in him in their presence. Peter babbled, not knowing what he was saying about booths for Jesus, Moses, and Elijah but the moment of glory was gone as fast as it came. They couldn't hold onto the moment for even a flash of time.

They came down the mountain and kept silent about the whole experience. People living on this side of the resurrection wonder why they didn't tell about what they saw happen to Jesus. Perhaps they'd seen a mystery that defied explanation. Whatever the case, we know they they didn't stay hushed about the experience for the rest of their days.

The second highpoint didn't look so great on first sight. A father met them in the town at the bottom of the hill begging Jesus for help. His son had a daemon and no one could help. Not even the disciples could help. Jesus named his frustrations and the faithlessness of the people but he did not walk away. He heard the father's plea. Mark 9:24 tells how the father even asked Jesus to help him in his unbelief.

Jesus healed the boy ordering the daemon to stop and restoring him to his father.

The mystery of what the disciples saw stands out. We like to solve mysteries, not live with them, but walking with Jesus means living in and with mysteries. We'll see high points and we'll see low points. And along the way we might catch a glimpse of God in glory or in suffering.

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