Sunday, February 15, 2015

The Transfiguration

2.15.2015 Transfiguration Sunday             Matthew 17:1-9 Jesus is Transfigured on a Mountain

The Transfiguration

The Transfiguration was Jesus’ experience with God. Not the first. Nor the last. It was an experience so intense that the glory of God transfigured Him into the brightness of the sun.

Transfiguration falls on the Sunday preceding Ash Wednesday, the first day of Lent. Preceding the Transfiguration, Jesus announced His intention of going to Jerusalem to suffer, die and rise again. Following this, Jesus urges His Disciples to deny themselves, take up their cross, and follow Him.

The Transfiguration was a preparation for Jesus’ journey to the cross. Before taking the trip to Jerusalem, Jesus had the experience of the Transfiguration on the mountain with Peter, James and John. Jesus was planning a trip to Jerusalem to suffer and die there as the Messiah. He needed confirmation, assurance, and approval from the Father to take the trip. Ash Wednesday, coming in three days, marks the beginning or your pilgrimage with Jesus to Jerusalem.

When Jesus came down from the mountain, He set His sights on Jerusalem. Thus, He began His trek. You too will journey with Him through the discipline of Lent. Lent is a time of reflection, of meditation, of fasting and soul searching, and prayer. It’s a time walk with God. But we go it not alone. We travel with our brothers and sisters in Christ. Together we remember the Lord Jesus in His Passion, His suffering, death and resurrection. We die to self and rise as new and redeemed people. As we journey together may our focus be on Christ and His victory of sin, death, and the devil; for you, for me, for the entire world.

O God, in the glorious transfiguration of Your beloved Son You confirmed the mysteries of the faith by the testimony of Moses and Elijah. In the voice that came from the bright cloud, You wonderfully foreshowed our adoption by grace. Mercifully make us co-heirs with the King in His glory and bring us to the fullness of our inheritance in heaven; through the same Jesus Christ, our Lord, who live and reigns with You and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever. 

[1] Schnorr von Carolsfeld woodcuts © WELS permission granted for personal and congregational use
[1] Lectionary Preaching Workbook Series A by John Brokhoff pp.84-86 © 1980 CSS Publishing, Lima, On 
[1] Collect for Transfiguration, Lutheran Service Book © 2006 Concordia Publishing House, St. Louis

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