The Transfiguration of our Lord

Identity and Transfiguration

Identity and Transfiguration

What is fundamental to our human identity? Where do we find worth? In the Garden, our forefathers were content to find worth in communion with God. But after the Fall, their sense of worth was inextricably tied to their identity. In other words, if they could connect themselves to some accomplishment, a certain way of being, the possession of an object (car, clothes, companionship) then they would be complete. But if that is where you find your sense of self-worth, if that is where your identity lies, what will happen when you lose those things? Do you suddenly lose who you are?

Perhaps you will blame everyone around you; you will seek to do whatever it takes, whether immoral or absurd to get it back. You will soon be talking like Gollum: “We wants it, we needs it. Must have the precious!” 

The Gospel promises in the Transfiguration that you can stop trying to find self-worth in the old world; the world where righteousness is nothing more than filthy rags. The Gospel teaches that your self-worth and identity is in the Second Adam. He is the One true possession you will never lose. Your identity and self-worth is secured in him.

As the Apostle Paul says, “Our adequacy is from God.” When we look at the Transfigured Lord, don’t look away. Keep looking. Keep listening. Keep learning. He will teach you to crush your dependence on the “precious” things of this world, and to turn your affections and love to Christ alone. Hear his voice today! Hear it as you taste and see that the Transfigured Lord is good.

Transfiguration Sunday: Transfiguration and Glory (Mark 9:1-8)

People of God, this morning we come to the Mount of Transfiguration. As we ascend this mountain we are bound to be somewhat confused by what we see. It is a striking story on a mountain with clouds and glittering garments. It is a narrative found in the three synoptic[1] gospels, and in Mark we get a glimpse of this crucial turning point in the life of our Lord and in the life of the Church calendar.[2] Next Sunday begins the Lenten Season; a penitential season; a season of special reflection for God’s people regarding our sins, and the terrible cross bore by our Lord. But we are not there yet. Today we celebrate the Transfiguration of our Lord. In summary, the Transfiguration is a glorious preview of what is to come for Jesus first, and then for us. The word Transfiguration means to be transformed or changed. What is remarkable for us as we listen to this passage is that we know the whole picture; the whole story, while Peter and the others only saw in part. As things were happening they were filled with perplexing questions, and at times they failed, particularly Peter, to see the purpose of what is happening. More


We have glory. We are image bearers, which means we share the glory of the Triune God. We are made partakers of the divine image. We are glory, and becoming glorified. Glory is given, not earned. Jesus takes this glory at Transfiguration revealing that he is the new Adam. The old Adam lost his glory and ours. Jesus is the glory of the Father, and so gives us this glory as his children.

Transfiguration Sunday: Matthew 17:1-5; Transfiguration and Resurrection

Audio Sermon

Sermon: People of God, our gospel lesson shows us that the Transfiguration is that one great moment in history when Christ appeared in light to show us a preview of how we as a people of light are to live now and what we will be at the Day of Resurrection.

Let us pray.

Prayer: May the words of my mouth, and the meditations of our hearts be acceptable in Your sight, O Lord, our Rock, and our Kinsman. Amen.

You have probably been enticed as I have many times to see a movie based on its preview. The preview is a summary; a condensed version of the big picture. The preview needs to captivate your attention in about 30 seconds; if you are not captivated by the preview/movie trailer you won’t be captivated by the full story; the full picture. More

A Voice from the Clouds

Concerning the voice of the Father from the clouds in the Transfiguration, Rev. William Smith (PCA) writes:

This is God’s throne chariot. This is the place where he is surrounded by myriads of cherubim and seraphim. Once again we see heaven and earth intersecting. And from this cloud a voice speaks.

The cloud stands at the center of the narrative in Matthew 5. It is the dwelling place of Yahweh. Clouds are judgment (Isaiah 19) or they can be affirmations. Clearly, Yahweh is placing His approval upon the Son. The Son is the chosen One to take on the Mosaic and Elijahic mission to its full completion. The very Son is the One who will soon be murdered, raised, and taken to the clouds to sit at the Right Hand of the Father.


Jesus’ Transfiguration was only a preview to the glorious transfiguration of the world. In the resurrection, Jesus was changed again into a newly glorified body as a preview of what we shall be. Jesus’ mountain brilliance is the brilliance of the new humanity. Because he was transfigured, we too shall be transfigured and united forever to the source of true light.