Mark 9:2-13 The Transfiguration

Mark 9

Mark 9:2-13

And after six days Jesus took with him Peter and James and John, and led them up a high mountain by themselves. And he was transfigured before them, and his clothes became radiant, intensely white, as no one on earth could bleach them.And there appeared to them Elijah with Moses, and they were talking with Jesus.And Peter said to Jesus, “Rabbi, it is good that we are here. Let us make three tents, one for you and one for Moses and one for Elijah.” For he did not know what to say, for they were terrified. And a cloud overshadowed them, and a voice came out of the cloud, “This is my beloved Son; listen to him.” And suddenly, looking around, they no longer saw anyone with them but Jesus only.

The mountain is where a lot of the supernatural glory of God was revealed. In the Old Testament, Moses had an encounter with God on the mountain of Sinai. But what was different from this encounter was that all three disciples saw the glory of God revealed and did not die.

Peter was so afraid that he blurted things out that makes no sense. When he saw Elijah and Moses with Jesus, he said that he was going to build a tabernacle for them so that people might not die when they see their glory shining. As Peter said this, a cloud overshadowed them and they heard the voice of God declaring, “This is my beloved Son; listen to Him.”

This was God once again introducing to the disciples who this Jesus is. In verse 8, Moses and Elijah were suddenly gone and it was only Jesus with them. It was a message that Jesus himself is the full manifestation of God’s glory. What Moses and Elijah did not and cannot do – Jesus will. Jesus was to be the Savior of the world and not just the Israelites. Jesus will be the final sacrifice and the ultimate priest and prophet to lead God’s people.

And as they were coming down the mountain, he charged them to tell no one what they had seen, until the Son of Man had risen from the dead. 10 So they kept the matter to themselves, questioning what this rising from the dead might mean.11 And they asked him, “Why do the scribes say that first Elijah must come?”12 And he said to them, “Elijah does come first to restore all things. And how is it written of the Son of Man that he should suffer many things and be treated with contempt? 13 But I tell you that Elijah has come, and they did to him whatever they pleased, as it is written of him.”

Jesus warned them not to tell the people what happened in the mountain. The transfiguration was a sign of things to come after the resurrection and the second coming of Christ. His death was going to come and there was going to be an appointed time. The Old Testament prophesied Elijah’s return before the “Great Day of the Lord” where God will make everything right so Peter was asking “has the time come?”

But Jesus told them that Elijah came yet the people did not listen to Elijah. Jesus reiterated that the Savior needs to suffer first before all things will be restored. It was a different kind of solution that God was going to show the world. It wasn’t to topple any government or to let Jesus be the fleshly king but rather the King would suffer for the people and bring everything to life again through his death and resurrection-  something that the people did not expect how the power of God will be manifested.

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