About eight days after Jesus said this, he took Peter, John and James with him and went up onto a mountain to pray. As he was praying, the appearance of his face changed, and his clothes became as bright as a flash of lightning. Two men, Moses and Elijah, appeared in glorious splendor, talking with Jesus. They spoke about his departure, which he was about to bring to fulfillment at Jerusalem. Peter and his companions were very sleepy, but when they became fully awake, they saw his glory and the two men standing with him. As the men were leaving Jesus, Peter said to him, “Master, it is good for us to be here. Let us put up three shelters—one for you, one for Moses and one for Elijah.” (He did not know what he was saying.) While he was speaking, a cloud appeared and covered them, and they were afraid as they entered the cloud. A voice came from the cloud, saying, “This is my Son, whom I have chosen; listen to him.” When the voice had spoken, they found that Jesus was alone. The disciples kept this to themselves and did not tell anyone at that time what they had seen.
Mountain Top Experiences
Sometimes in our lives we have what are called “mountain top experiences.” They are experiences that are so great we never want them to end. Some brides and grooms feel that way on their wedding day. They are surrounded by the people that they love the most. They look their best. Everyone is happy and smiling. They never want the day to end. But it does end. They need the wedding day to end so that they can get on with their married life and the future that awaits them.
In this lesson from Luke chapter 9, Jesus and three of his closest followers had a mountain top experience. For a moment the disciples where given a glimpse of Jesus in his greatness as the Son of God. It was awesome. Jesus’ clothes were as bright as a flash of lightning. Jesus conferred with Moses and Elijah, two of the great figures from the Old Testament. Peter didn’t want the experience to end. This is why he proposed that they build three shelters. He was hoping to capture and hold the greatness of this incredible moment.
But like all other mountain top experiences, this moment had to end. Jesus knew that he had very important work waiting for him on a different mountain. That was Mount Calvary, the mountain on which he would be crucified for the sins of all people. It was important for Jesus’ disciples and it is important for us to remember both mountains. The mountain on which Jesus showed his glory reminds us that he is the true Son of God. Mount Calvary reminds us that Jesus is the Lamb of God who willingly gave his life to make the payment for your sins and the sins of the entire world.
This week the season of Lent begins. It is a time when we focus on the suffering and death of Jesus Christ. As we focus on his passion, let us not forget his great power. He is the Son of God who takes away the sin of the world.
Dear Jesus, I worship you as the glorious Son of God who came from heaven to sacrifice yourself as the Lamb of God to take away the guilt of my sins. Bless me with the truth of your Word and the joy of your salvation. Amen.