The Transfiguration

Pierce Maassen

READ : Luke 9:28–36

And as he was praying, the appearance of his face was altered, and his clothing became dazzling white. (v. 29)

Many important events of Christ’s ministry took place on mountains. He often went up to a mountain to pray; his greatest sermon was preached on a mountain; he suffered the agonies of Gethsemane on the side of a mountain; he ascended to heaven from a mountain.

On a mountain, in the presence of Peter, James, and John, Jesus was completely transformed. When Moses met God on Mount Sinai his face shone with a reflected light, but with Jesus the glory was his own.

The transfiguration benefited both Jesus and his followers. Christ was facing the cross, and this was for him no easy thing. The temptation was constantly before him somehow to avoid the bitter cup of the cross. In the transfiguration, the Father assured the Son once more of his divine approval of the Son’s work and also reminded him of the glory that awaited him upon his victorious return to heaven.

One day Jesus is coming again to judge all people. He will come in triumph and glory like that which was his on the Mount of Transfiguration and which is his in heaven at the right hand of God. What a glorious experience it was for Peter, James, and John to see Christ’s glory on the mountain. How wonderful it will be for his followers to see him descending from heaven in glory on that last day! (originally published May 22, 1967)


I praise you, O Christ, as King of kings and Lord of lords.