March 3, 2019
Fr. Phil Eberhart
Ex 34:29-35 Ps 99 1 Cor 12:27-13:13 Lk 9:28-36
Face to Face Transformation
Have you ever looked in the mirror and tried to see Jesus? I have to tell you... it's kinda hard!
One of my favorite things is to collect pictures of Jesus. I have about 6 or 8 paintings and need to expand the collection and put them back up in my office some day... but I want to see what people think Jesus looked like.
I'm a little jealous of the painting that Brian and Barbara Felt have in their home, the Head of Christ that is referred to in Heaven is For Real, as the person that the young boy, Colton, met in heaven.
So what's the point of all the ramble here? This morning is the Sunday of the Transfiguration - you probably figured that out from the readings! Lots of talk about mountains and shining faces, clouds of glory with voices coming out of them and ...
disciples who didn't get it.
My point is that Jesus wants to transform us into His image and likeness. No we're probably not going to look like Him in a mirror sort of way - we will look just like we do now, for better or worse - but there will be an inner change, an inner transformation or transfiguration into His image. So what IS THAT IMAGE?
How many of you read the Gospels through regularly? I know many read the Bible regularly but do we do what James encourages us to do:
[Jas 1:22-25 NLT]
22 But don't just listen to God's word. You must do what it says. Otherwise, you are only fooling yourselves. 23 For if you listen to the word and don't obey, it is like glancing at your face in a mirror. 24 You see yourself, walk away, and forget what you look like. 25 But if you look carefully into the perfect law that sets you free, and if you do what it says and don't forget what you heard, then God will bless you for doing it.
"If you look carefully into the perfect law that sets you free" - there is the challenge isn't it? And then do it!
Jesus said that the one who DID His Word, was the one whose house was built on bedrock. No storm can assail it! Let the storm's come as they will.
Paul gives us the secret in Rom 12:
How do we start to look like Jesus?
The writer of Hebrews gives us a giant instructional clue...
There we have it again: Consider Carefully , Fasten your gaze, ... "Fix your eyes on Jesus, the Author and the Finisher of your faith!"
What do spend time with? How do you read the Bible? Just a verse here and there, a glance in the morning, the verse of the day? Sure God speaks to us through these "snacks" but do you ever sit down and have the full meal deal?
Look intently - Consider carefully - Fasten your gaze!
On the mountain top, the disciples saw a lot - they saw Moses and Elijah talking with Jesus - in all His glory - shining face, clothes like lightening and all - kind of a pre-cursor for the Apostle John who would have another of those kinds of revelations late in his life on Patmos. Read Rev. 1 some day!
They saw and apparently heard what they were talking about! How Jesus was going to bring to fulfillment all that they stood for - the Law and the Prophets - in his soon departure from Jerusalem. That may be why he said, "IT IS FINISHED!"
But the disciples, just like us so often, completely missed the point of the conversation, so God just makes it plain: We're not going to make a new tabernacle - it's not about camping here on the mountaintop and staying in the glory - It's all about Jesus! "This is my beloved SON ... LISTEN TO HIM!"
This is about Jesus and His Word to us. Daily Bread!
What does Jesus look like, face to face? Have you gazed? Have you heard, read, marked, learned and inwardly digested?
Let's just look at 3 verses: Our reading from 1 Cor 13
Paul tells us that Jesus is the "visible image of the invisible God!" And we are charged with coming to look like HIM. We are HIS BODY, Paul says, "The fullness of Him who fills all in all!" (Eph 1)
One final scripture, where Paul is talking to the Corinthians about Moses and the veil we read about this morning in Exodus 34.
2 Cor 3 (TPT)