Year 3 Day 15
Read - Mark 9:4-8
Message - Alan Burke
Often people read the Bible as a series of disjointed stories, think of our time in Sunday school. There we were taught many things but most of the time if not all of the time they were disjointed accounts that didn’t help us understand the big picture of the Bible. Well here in the transfiguration as these disciples saw for a brief moment the Glory of the Son of God and there they saw two men standing with Jesus talking to Him, Moses and Elijah (4). In this we are reminded that the bible is one continual revelation One Lord, One Plan and One People that focus on Jesus, the terminal point of God’s promises. What took place on the mountain directly links what has come before to the coming of Jesus.
Moses was the mediator of the Covenant with the people of God, he was Isreal’s deliverer, he foreshadowed Jesus the mediator of the new covenant, the true deliverer of God’s people. Whereas Elijah was one of the most prominent old covenant prophets, Elijah was supposed to appear at the dawning of the end time and God’s ultimate redemption of Israel. Both are mentioned in Malachi 4:4–6. God had proposed that he would send the prophet Elijah before that great and dreadful day of the LORD comes.
In Matthew’s gospel account Jesus said that he fulfilled the law and the prophets, and we have here Moses and Elijah appearing, witnessing to him at the transfiguration (Mat 5:17). This is the juncture in redemptive history, we have Moses who represents the Law and Elijah the Prophets, for law and the prophets looked forward to the Messiah, the Christ, they were pointing forward to the coming of Jesus. The presence of Moses and Elijah there on the mountain would have made it clear for the readers and hearers of Mark’s gospel that the Kingdom of God had now drawn near (Mk 1:15).
Then Peter in the midst of this wonderful revelation of the Glory of the Son of God, with Moses and Elijah standing there talking to Jesus, and he opens his mouth. It’s another impulsive response that we have seen time and time again from Peter, he’s talking when he should be listening, and what he does is that he asks to build three shelters, tents or literally tabernacles. Again Peter understood but didn’t understand, he recognised that the new exodus had come, for Judaism held on to the hope that God would once again tabernacle with his people as in the Exodus. He understood but not fully, he saw but not yet clearly of what God was doing. As Mark makes clear that Peter spoke because he was afraid and didn’t know what to say, so he spoke from a human perspective.
At that moment Peter is interrupted, a cloud appeared, again another illusion to what happened before in Exodus 24, the cloud envelopes them, it is a symbol of the presence of God overshadowing them, with the voice of God coming from the cloud saying “This is my Son, whom I love. Listen to him!” (7). Never again would the disciples mistake Jesus for a mere man, they were eyewitness to his Glory, the Glory of the Son of God. Then as suddenly as the Glory of the Son of God is revealed to them it is gone. Jesus stands alone, Moses and Elijah are gone, Jesus again is cloaked in His humanity but these disciples even though they had their whole world rocked as Jesus had told them that He must suffer many things, be rejected, He must be killed and after three days rise again had seen the glory of the Son of God. They knew as never before that they were with the God incarnate.
From beginning to end, from Genesis to Revelation the Bible is about One Lord, One Plan and One People that focus on Jesus the terminal point of God’s promises. He reveals the Father to us, He has made the way that we who are the enemies of God by our nature might be saved. He is the one who came to make a the new covenant in His blood, which provided complete atonement for all the sins of God’s people, past, present, and future. My sin, your sin, the sin of all those who repent and believe in Him the Son of God.
Q21 Who is the Redeemer of God’ s elect?
The only Redeemer of God’ s elect is the Lord Jesus Christ, (1 Tim. 2:5–6) who, being the eternal Son of God, became man, (John 1:14, Gal. 4:4) and so was, and continueth to be, God and man in two distinct natures, and one person, for ever. (Rom. 9:5, Luke 1:35, Col. 2:9, Heb. 7:24–25)