The Transformational Power of the Transfiguration
Good morning everyone. Today, we celebrate the feast of The Transfiguration. The moment that Jesus ascends the mountain, and his very physical presence is changed in front of his disciples. The moment God speaks to Jesus disciples and tells them exactly who He is.
It is both a profoundly symbolic event AND a miracle so awesome that it reverberates through history to us and calls on US to be transfigured.
Let’s first deal with where this miracle happens. I aways tell you to pay attention to the geography of the Gospels – where things happen – because understanding that can often open new doors to understanding why they’re happening.
In Matthew we see Jesus’ transfiguration on a mountaintop. Not just a mountaintop – but a high mountaintop.
A pinnacle. In fact a pivotal pinnacle! Try saying that fast three times! This is the moment where we see a shift in Jesus’ ministry here on earth. His divinity shines forth with quite literal radiant glory. There’s no allegory here, no story, no teaching to be interpreted – Jesus’ face shone like the sun and his clothes became as white as the light. It must have been a sight to behold… it must have been breath taking… especially after a long walk, a long journey to this very high mountaintop.
That journey remains the same for us today – we walk in the footsteps of the disciples. We journey through our daily lives and attempt to engage with Jesus – our mountaintop is coming here to mass and we are transformed by it. Our journey to the mountaintop can be difficult and fraught – but once we’re here – we can allow ourselves to be transfigured by the radiant glory of Jesus in the body and blood of the eucharist.
We climb our own mountain to meet Jesus and in meeting Him we discover something important… Jesus is not simply a man who teaches some helpful ideas… no – he is the Son of God.
The earth-shattering revelation of Jesus’ divinity in our Gospel today reinforces the truth that Jesus is not just a great teacher or prophet but the very incarnation of God’s LOVE and GRACE.
This transformation shows us that true change and growth come from encountering the divine and allowing it to radiate through our lives. Not just here in church on a Sunday – but every single day.
The appearance of Moses and Elijah talking with Jesus on the mountaintop holds profound significance. Moses represents the Law, while Elijah represents the Prophets – together, they encompass the entire Old Testament. This connection emphasizes the continuity between the old covenant and the new covenant in Jesus. The Transfiguration underscores that Jesus fulfils the Law and the Prophets and stands as the culmination of God’s plan.
The transfiguration is showing us that Jesus encompasses all, that he has always been, that he will always be, and that he should be the centre of our lives, our study, our faith, and the basis from which we live in the world around us.
Amid the physical miracles of Jesus shining brightly and the appearance of Moses and Elijah a voice is heard… “This is my Son, the Beloved; he enjoys my favour. Listen to him!”
This message roars through history to us this morning. We are called not only to marvel at Jesus’ divine nature but to heed what he teaches us, what he gives us, to listen and to obey.
What does Jesus teach us? What does he give us? What does he ask us to do?
He asks us to repent, to love, to forgive, to serve and to do so unconditionally.
The Transfiguration is more than a historical event; it is a living message that reverberates through time and speaks to the depths of our souls. Just as Peter, James, and John were transformed by their encounter with the transfigured Jesus, we too are invited to allow Jesus’ light to shine in and through us.
So, let’s ascend our own mountaintops, seek God’s presence, and be open to the transformation He offers in our daily lives.
As we leave this place today, may we carry the radiance of the transfigured Jesus into the world, reflecting His love, grace, and truth in all we do.