Journey to the Resurrection: Luke 9:28-36 The Transfiguration
NOTE: SUNDAY POSTS ARE INTENDED TO BE USED ALONG WITH THE SERMON. THEY ARE NOT FULL THOUGHTS WITH IDEAS WORKED OUT. YOU CAN LISTEN AS YOU LOOK ALONG AT http://www.threeriversc.org/#/sermon-audio
Remember Luke’s purpose: Luke 1:1-4
“Inasmuch as many have undertaken to compile a narrative of the things that have been accomplished among us, just as those who from the beginning were eyewitnesses and ministers of the word have delivered them to us, it seemed good to me also, having followed all things closely for some time past, to write an orderly account for you, most excellent Theophilus, that you may have certainty concerning the things you have been taught.”
Luke 9:28-36 is a “come and see glory” passage.
It is not the type of text where there is much “go do these three things”.
This is, however, the type of text where we simply feast our souls on the majesty and glory of Jesus.
Sometimes we don’t need things to do other than stand in awe and worship. I would argue seeing glory will do more for mobilizing “doing” than telling people to go “do”.
So, the invitation this morning is to “come and see”, “feast your soul on the finest of fare.”
Why not liberally spread the account of the transfiguration? The prophetic word is better than the experience. 2 Peter 1:16-19
“For we did not follow cleverly devised myths when we made known to you the power and coming of our Lord Jesus Christ, but we were eyewitnesses of his majesty. For when he received honor and glory from God the Father, and the voice was borne to him by the Majestic Glory, “This is my beloved Son, with whom I am well pleased,” we ourselves heard this very voice borne from heaven, for we were with him on the holy mountain. And we have the prophetic word more fully confirmed, to which you will do well to pay attention as to a lamp shining in a dark place, until the day dawns and the morning star rises in your hearts, knowing this first of all, that no prophecy of Scripture comes from someone’s own interpretation. For no prophecy was ever produced by the will of man, but men spoke from God as they were carried along by the Holy Spirit.”
Be careful looking for signs and experiences when we have the living and active, sharper than a two edged sword of the word (Hebrews 4:12).
Don’t miss the supernatural word looking for a sign. Jesus said that was characteristic of an evil generation. (Luke 11:29-32)
The “Big Idea” is: Jesus is the eternal Son, the glory of God the Father, so listen to him (obey him)
The Old Testament Parallels are too thick to deal with in our short time.
The Banner Over The Big Idea: God’s “glory” returns, as we see Jesus’ appearance changed and the cloud of glory descends on the mountain 9:29, 34
In order to see the significance of verses 29 and 34 we have to go back to the Old Testament so we can pick up on the parallels.
1. The cloud and the fire after Egypt in the wilderness Exodus 16:10
- The cloud of glory descends to meet with Moses
- The cloud leads by day and fire by night
2. Moses in the presence of God’s glory Exodus 24:15-18; 33:17-23
– The cloud and the fire and the glory are one and the same.
3. The tabernacle and the cloud Exodus 40:34-38
– The tabernacle is assembled and the cloud of glory fills it and the holiness is so thick Moses can’t go in!
4. The temple and the cloud 1 Kings 8:10-11
– The ark is brought in and the cloud of glory fills the temple and the holiness and glory is so thick the priests can’t stand to do their job. They literally can’t stand up.
5. Glory departing Ezekiel 8-10
– Due to the idolatry of the elders, the women weeping for Tammuz, and the men with their backs to the temple, facing east worshiping the sun, the Glory of the Lord leaves the temple.
– But hope abounds as in the next chapter (11:14-20) the promise is that although the Lord will send them away, he will be present and bring his people back and remove their hearts of stone and give them a heart of flesh (regeneration).
6. Jesus, the glory returning Luke 2:13, 14; John 1:14
We come to the New Testament and the writers make it a point to connect Jesus with/as the God of glory in the Old Testament.
“Glory to God in the highest…”; Why? Because the Savior, Christ the Lord, Immanuel, has come.
“And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us, and we have seen his glory, glory as of the only Son from the Father, full of grace and truth.”
1. Jesus is “Immanuel”, God with us Matthew 1:23
“Behold, the virgin shall conceive and bear a son, and they shall call his name Immanuel.”
2. Jesus is the glory of God Hebrews 1:1-3
“Long ago, at many times and in many ways, God spoke to our fathers by the prophets, but in these last days he has spoken to us by his Son, whom he appointed the heir of all things, through whom also he created the world. He is the radiance of the glory of God and the exact imprint of his nature, and he upholds the universe by the word of his power. After making purification for sins, he sat down at the right hand of the Majesty on high.”
3. Jesus is the cloud and fire that led the people Jude 5
“Now I want to remind you, although you once fully knew it, that Jesus, who saved a people out of the land of Egypt, afterward destroyed those who did not believe.”
4. Jesus is the one who met Moses on the mountain and wrote on the tablets and made Moses’ face glow.
5. Jesus is the one who descended in the tabernacle.
6. Jesus is the one who filled the temple.
7. Jesus is the one who left during Ezekiel’s day.
8. Jesus is the one now come to redeem, restore and expand his rule.
THEREFORE, THE BIG IDEA: JESUS IS THE GLORY OF GOD THE FATHER, THE ETERNAL SON, THE GOD OF THE OLD TESTAMENT, SO LISTEN TO HIM!
Jesus’ transfiguration is not isolated from the other texts 9:28
Jesus has just heard them confess who he is and he has taught some hard things:
1. Peter confesses to Jesus’ identity
2. Jesus foretells of his death and resurrection
3. Jesus tells them they must be willing to take up their cross and follow in his footsteps
This makes the transfiguration a key moment in the lives of those who witness it and those who will hear their testimony. There are hard times coming, and they needed to know and bear witness to the fact that Jesus is glorious. He is who we know him to be.
These men would be inspired authors of the prophetic word! They needed to see this for the sake of the mission.
Jesus’ “exodus” is the topic of discussion 9:30-31
The topic of discussion with Jesus, Moses and Elijah is Jesus’ “exodus”.
The cross is the event that the first “exodus” is pointing to in salvation history.
1. The people are “passed over” through the sacrifice of a perfect lamb without blemish
2. The people are led out of bondage to freely belong to and worship the Lord Jesus
3. The people are to inherit a kingdom where the Lord reigns over them as king
1. Jesus is our passover lamb 1 Corinthians 5:7
2. Jesus takes us from our dead state and adopts us as his that we may worship him without hindrance Ephesians 2:1-10; Romans 8
3. Jesus has transferred us from the domain of darkness into the kingdom as heirs with him of the whole creation Colossians 1:13; Matthew 5:5
Moses and Elijah show us God is not the God of the dead, but of the living 9:30
Why Moses and Elijah? Lot’s of possible reasons, but we’d be guessing. For whatever reason, these two are here alive and conversing with the Lord Jesus.
This is big considering Jesus just told them they would have to take up a cross too.
Mark 12:18-27 tells us about an encounter where Jesus gets asked a conundrum question, by people who don’t believe there is a resurrection, if in fact a resurrection took place when brothers tried to raise up children for previously deceased brothers regarding whose wife the girl would be. Confusing. Yes.
So, Jesus takes advantage of the opportunity to point out their lack of knowledge of the Scriptures and their failure to know the power of God (v. 24) by pointing out that God told Moses he was the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, who are in fact, alive and well, thus the reason there will be a resurrection. The dead are not really dead. Their bodies finally broke down all the way, but they are alive and he is their God and they will be raised to a new body one day.
Jesus does answer their question. There will be no marriage in the eternal kingdom. So, no worries on whose wife she’ll be. Jesus addressed the bigger issue. Resurrection.
Jesus just blew up those Sadducees.
ASIDE: IT IS APPROPRIATE, DEAR CHRISTIAN, TO IMITATE THE GOD WE SAY WE BELIEVE IN AND FOLLOW. JESUS IS NOT “PEACE LOVE DOPE” JESUS. JESUS WAS KIND TO PROSTITUTES AND TAX COLLECTORS AND SINNERS. JESUS IS NOT KIND TO THOSE WHO SAY THEY KNOW AND ACT LIKE THE WORLD.
JESUS CALLED PEOPLE NAMES WITH EXCLAMATION POINTS. JESUS CALLED PEOPLE “WHORES” A LOT IN EZEKIEL. READ EZEKIEL 23 AND SEE IF YOU BLUSH WHEN JESUS TALKS ABOUT THE LEWDNESS OF IDOLATRY. SOMETHING ABOUT MEMBERS LIKE DONKEYS AND THE EMISSION OF HORSES. THAT COMES FROM THE MOUTH OF GOD.
ITS APPROPRIATE TO SPEAK THE WAY GOD SPEAKS TO THE ISSUES GOD ADDRESSES. IF YOU DON’T YOU ARE NOT BEING A GOOD AMBASSADOR. THAT’S AN AMBASSADOR’S JOB. THEY ARE TO REPRESENT THE MESSAGE AND THE EMOTION CONNECTED TO THE MESSAGE FROM THE KING.
THE MORE WE KNOW GOD THE MORE WE’LL BE LIKE HIM AS IMITATORS. BUT IT WILL CONFLICT WITH THE KINGDOM OF DARKNESS. SO WHEN YOU POKE THE NEXT, EXPECT ATTACK.
Moses and Elijah are not dead!
The Father gives information and instruction regarding the glorious Jesus 9:34, 35
Jesus is the Son. Listen to him.
Listen is the bible’s way of saying, “obey him.”
To obey Jesus is to worship Jesus.
Jesus confronts the demonic opposition to his kingdom after coming down from revealing himself to Peter, James and John 9:37-43a
“A man begged Jesus to look at his demon-possessed son, whom the other disciples had been unable to help. In stark contrast with the disciples, only Jesus could help the boy—just as He is the only One who can help the world.”
1. The glory of God come to redeem is THE help and hope of the world.
Psalm 147:1 “Praise the LORD! For it is good to sing praises to our God; for it is pleasant, and a song of praise is fitting.”