What is the meaning and significance of the transfiguration of Jesus?
People have said a lot about what happened on the mount of transfiguration, I wont be saying an entirely different thing either, but i will like to bring your reality and conciousness to some hidden truth about what could have truly happened on the mount of transfiguration, by the eternal wisdom of God.
Before we dive deep, I will like to define what transfiguration is
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What is transfiguration?
The Merriam Webster dictionary defines transfiguration as a change in form or appearance.
Transfiguration can also be said to be a state of metamorphosing from a Physical state to spiritual
Lets liken transfiguration to some of the pictures you took while you were a baby, Having a look at those pictures now that you are an adult, what has changed?
A lot right, it looks like you transfigured? Some persons dont even look anything like their baby pictures, adulthood has changed a lot about some folks.
But does it mean that you are not the baby in the picture? of course, No.
Transfiguration basically means the original essence of a thing.
Now, lets go back to the transfiguration story in Mark 9
2After six days Jesus took Peter, James and John with him and led them up a high mountain, where they were all alone. There he was transfigured before them.3His clothes became dazzling white, whiter than anyone in the world could bleach them.4And there appeared before them Elijah and Moses, who were talking with Jesus.Mark 9:2-4 NIV
The transfiguration of Jesus
This was a very indigenous moment in the entire story of Jesus, At this point in his ministry, he had done diverse sort of miracles which included healing the sick, raising the dead, and he had even foretold his disciples about his death.
But what was this transfiguration all about? Let”s find out.
If you look at our reference scripture, you will see that Jesus had taken with him John, Peter, and James to a mountain where the transfiguration occured.
The transfiguration occured such that Jesus was transformed with his clothes glittering.
But what catches my attention in the entirety of this scripture is the presence of Moses and Elijah.
To be able to get a proper understanding of the significance of the transfiguration of Jesus, i will like to explain the role of the personalities that took part in the transfiguration
Who were this people? what is the significance of their presence? To what intent was it?
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Who was Moses? What was his significance in the transfiguration of Jesus?
Moses represents a system of operation called the Law, It was the systems of operation he functioned in while he was a leader in Isreal. The law represents a dispensation, a civilization, it was a system God crafted and gave to Moses for the Children of Isreal to live by for generations. It was like a guide until Christ came. Galatians 3:24
The law was very hard to live by, hence, man had to relish his effort just to keep to the standards of the law, which displaces the work of faith. The law was a means to an end, it was more of a pathway to a better covenant.
Christ had not come, the law was what kept the Isrealite in check, the law was perfect, but the people the law was designed for couldn’t fulfil the law because of it severity.
The Children of Isreal had lived not necessarily by the law, but by the righteousness of a year old lamb that was slain yearly. The law was perfect, man couldn’t abide by the law, hence, an option for atonement was given whereby righteousness was established, and this is how the Isrealite lived.
Gods original plan before the fall was perfection, he wanted man to explore his fullness, which means man didnt have to struggle, God already finished his works and rested.
After the fall, the struggle began from Noah, Abraham, Moses, Elijah, Until Christ came. galatians 3:24,25
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What was Elijah’s role in the transfiguration of Jesus?
He represented the Prophets.
Elijah was a major Prophet in Israel, He was more of a judge in an apostate country. He came at a time when People had left God to pursue something else
He lived in a time when Prophets were whom the kings and the people ran to when they needed to hear God.
but what was his significance in the whole transfiguration story?
The time of the Prophets was also a dispensation and a civilization that started out with Elijah.
Just like Moses, he stood as a Mediator between God and man. And this dispensation of Prophets lasted for generations.
To finally connect the dot, I will like to bring in a third party member who was not a part of the transfiguration story; John the Baptist
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John the Baptist
Who was John the Baptist? What was his connection with the transfiguration of Jesus? its simple, he was the forerunner of Jesus Christ.
A forerunner is someone that is sent to herald the coming of someone or something new. A forerunner is like an omen, a pointer to a new way of Life.
John the Baptist, was the fullness of the law and the Prophets, how do I know? Let’s check Luke 16:16
The law and the prophets were until John: since that time the kingdom of God is preached, and every man presseth into it.
Luke 16:16 KJV
John the Baptist housed both the law and the prophet and yet still went about proclaiming a Kingdom whose law was another law called the Spirit and Life.
Have you ever wondered why they couldn’t decipher who John the Baptist was? They asked if he was Elias because of the tenacity of his gospel, they asked if he was the Christ because he baptised by water. Its because of the fullness he carried.
The Elijah that was proposed to come before Christ had come in John the Baptist, he dwelled in the wilderness and look no different from the old prophet; Elijah
John the Baptist was a testament to the fact that the law and the prophet were perfected in Christ.
he was an indication that a new civilization was about to be born.,
When asked, he said in
And this is the record of John, when the Jews sent priests and Levites from Jerusalem to ask him, Who art thou? And he confessed, and denied not; but confessed, I am not the Christ. And they asked him, What then? Art thou Elias? And he saith, I am not. Art thou that prophet? And he answered, No. Then said they unto him, Who art thou? that we may give an answer to them that sent us. What sayest thou of thyself? He said, I am the voice of one crying in the wilderness, Make straight the way of the Lord, as said the prophet Esaias.
John 1:19-23 KJV
Let’s go back to the whole transfiguration story.
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The Significance of the transfiguration of Jesus
John the Baptist had come and gone, Jesus was getting close to the end of his ministry, the transfiguration happened, Why?
The reason for the transfiguration is to show that a new dispensation has been birthed through Christ.
All three personalities came into the world at a time when righteousness was out of scale, thereby standing in as a mediator between God and man.
The striking difference between the law and the prophet and Christ was that Christ was the perfection of the Law.
Christ came as a man, and he fully obeyed the law, not erring, scripture says he learnt obedience via the things he suffered.
Having being Justified by his obedience and the things he suffered, he became the perfection for the law.
The perfect law and the perfect man.
God’s will is established, his righteousness is revealed. hence the transfiguration of Jesus happened.
We no longer live by the law, a new dispensation was launched, Christ had fufilled the law, hence we are made perfect through Christ.
But now the righteousness of God without the law is manifested, being witnessed by the law and the prophets;
Romans 3:21 KJV
I believe that Moses and Elijah came as witnesses to the righteousness of God that was to come through Christ Jesus, hence, the transfiguration.