In the gospel text, Peter, James, and John had joined Jesus and escaped from the crowd to pray up in a mountain (probably) Mount Hermon. They saw Jesus take on something of a supernatural “glow” — his face and clothes “as bright as a flash of lightning” (vs. 29). Then Moses and Elijah appeared and spoke with Jesus. On the mountaintop, in the presence of the glory, Peter said, “Master, it is good for us to be here” (vs. 33). Then he wanted to build three shelters to honour these great men.
Peter, James and John could not understand that God did this not for Jesus, but for the disciples. What God was telling the disciples was, “Jesus is more than a special person. Jesus is God with you.” And it was also a declaration of the presence of the glory of God in the world. The transfiguration is not a vision of the way the world could be, it is a declaration of the way the world already is, when God’s people accept the promise and live out the vision.
The story continued. They came down from the mountain, back to life in the valley. Jesus knew that God’s glory was not on the mountain, but down in the valley where an epileptic boy waited to be healed; where the people were. God’s glory was down in the valley where a cross waited on a Friday called Good. This is the glory of God, transfiguring the world.
Peter wanted to stay on the mountain and live in the moment of glory forever, but it could not be. Life moves on, and the way of Jesus moved on to the cross. Moments of transformation are not to be held on to, but are to change you to live on in a different way, even after the light is gone. The transfiguration of Jesus is a sign of the presence of God’s glory, alive in our world – and it is by the transfiguration caused in us, our lives and our actions, when we behold the glory of God. IL-WOONG.
Stan last week premiered Miracle Workers starring Harry Potter actor Daniel Radcliffe as Craig, an average angel who fights to save the world from destruction by God (Steve Buscemi). Seems God is the bored CEO of the universe and in something of a midlife crisis, so he decides to end his business with humanity.
God Is Good For You by Greg Sheridan. The Judeo-Christian tradition has created and underpinned the moral and legal fabric of Western civilisation for more than 2,000 years, yet now we’ve reached a point in both Australia and many parts of the West where Christianity has become a minority faith rather than the mainstream belief. It’s a situation that’s fraught both for Christians and our wider society, where the moral certainties that were the foundation of our institutions and laws are no longer held by the majority. At this point of crisis for faith, God Is Good For You shows us why Christianity is so vital for our personal and social well-being, and how modern Christians have never worked so hard to make the world a better place at a time when their Faith has never been less valued. It carries a vital torch for Christianity in a way that’s closely argued, warmly human, good humoured yet passionate, and, above all, convincing.