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Matthew 17:6

Posted 09/08/21, by Dan Vis

One of the most astonishing stories in the Gospel accounts, is the story of the transfiguration. Where Jesus goes up with Peter, James and John into a mount, and Jesus is transfigured gloriously before them.

Peter, offers to make three tabernacles--unconsciously putting Jesus on an equal level with Moses and Elijah. But then the Father "overshadows" the whole group in a bright cloud and pronounces the pre-eminence of Jesus: "This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased; hear ye HIM."

Moses and Elijah seems to represent the law and the prophets. A common Jewish phraseology for the Scriptures. Which suggests to me there may be some risk of us doing the same thing as Peter. Unintentionally elevating the Bible to the same level as Jesus. Or to put it differently, is it possible to elevate the spotlight to the importance of the star standing on the stage?

Whatever the intent of that message, the disciples took it seriously:

Matthew 17:6
And when the disciples heard it, they fell on their face, and were sore afraid.

I think that's the encounter we each must have. That it's not enough to familiarize ourselves with the Bible. To read it, study it, or even memorize it. No, we have to encounter the real Jesus through its pages. We have to see Him transfigured before us, in our own mind. And when we do, we too will fall on our face in repentance.

That's what this experience did for the disciples, it seems. For after it was all over, "they saw no man, save Jesus only".

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Posted by Dan Vis on 09/10/21
It is a pretty cool thought John! Putting all the pieces together in this story does suggest some deeper things are going on. As is so often the case with Jesus. Glad this triggered some new thoughts for you.
Posted by John Gilmore on 09/10/21
I hadn't seen the double meaning in Matthew 17:8And when they had lifted up their eyes, they saw no man, save Jesus only. before. Thank you.
Posted by Dan Vis on 09/09/21
I'm sure there are other ways to look at this Rhoda, but this really highlights to me the supremacy of Jesus, and how He needs to have absolutely first place in our life. Glad you are enjoying the blog!

Another beautiful prayer Everton. To see Jesus standing by himself, alone! And for that to be our continuous experience. Of course, it is interesting--when they finally saw Jesus alone, He was no longer transfigured, suggesting they too had to see Him that way by faith, not by sight. Just as we do. Which also means we CAN see Him that way...
Posted by Everton Guthrie on 09/09/21
Wow. These simple statements are so significant. I want to see Jesus in his glory standing by himself too. Give that continuous experience oh God!
Posted by Rhoda Forbes on 09/08/21
Thank you Pst Dan, I've read this passage many times but never realised that Peter was putting Jesus on the same level as Elijah and Moses. Looking forward to more interesting revelations.
Posted by Dan Vis on 09/08/21
Thanks Laurie, Appreciate the feedback! :)

That's a really cool way of thinking about that verse Jeannie. Amazing how the Holy Spirit can pull things together like this. So powerful. And I agree completely about the importance of seeking to "really interact in heart with Christ" through our devotions and memorization. That's the key, isn't it?
Posted by Jeannie Marcoux on 09/08/21
I love this! Recently, I have been equating Christ’s words being in me with Christ being in me, as Jesus said in John 15:7If ye abide in me, and my words abide in you, ye shall ask what ye will, and it shall be done unto you., “If ye abide in me and my words abide in you, ye shall ask what ye will and it shall be done unto you.” I find this an interesting parallel to earlier statements when he says, “If ye abide in me and I abide in you…”. However, like the Pharisees we have the ability to set up a rote form of devotion that memorizes and studies without really interacting in heart with Christ. The Word enshrined in my heart brings me to repentance.
Posted by Laurie Wissink on 09/08/21
Thank you for these short devotionals! I really enjoy them!


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