Source – “Five Ways Into Sunday’s Scripture from Faith Formation and Education”, Trinity Church NY
This week’s Gospel reading is Matthew’s account of the luminous transfiguration of Jesus in the presence of his close disciples, Peter, James, and John, on Mount Tabor. No one can see God and remain unchanged.
As on the Baptism of Jesus, here, at the last Sunday of Epiphany, God reveals who Jesus really is: the Divine Son, the Beloved, truly God. Bright light is a symbol of divine presence and the presence of the great figures of Moses and Elijah also attest to Jesus’ divine nature. Thus they are changed. He opened their eyes so that instead of being blind they could see.
The disciples’ glimpse of this reality may have helped them (at least in retrospect — and with the eyes of their hearts) to deal with the abrupt and dramatic changes that would soon follow: Jesus’ turn to Jerusalem, his passion, death, and resurrection.
For us, as we face into the Lenten season, we hold an image of this mountaintop experience, knowing full well that we, like they, must come down from the mountain and move out into the world proclaiming Good News to the poor, learning how to welcome God’s Beloved amid change, challenge, disappointment, and sacrifice