There is still room on the mountain.

(Part three of a reflection on Matthew 17 and Luke 9)

I’d like to make some observations from this story.

1. The disciples wanted to spend time with Jesus.

He was going up on the mountain, so they went up on the mountain. They had watched him go away to pray often. We don’t know how often they went along. But this time it’s clear that they joined him.

This is still happening. Jesus is still praying. For us. And we are still invited. The writer of Hebrews invites us to the mountain where Jesus is now sitting next to the Father, in glory, talking.

We are invited, like the disciples, to that mountain. To stop what we are doing, and to go with Jesus.

2. The disciples hadn’t seen all of who Jesus was. Their experience of Jesus was just a glimpse. And this glory was just a glimpse. But those glimpses change us, they transform us. Because they give us a perspective that says, “This isn’t all that there is.”

When Jesus began to glow, it was clear he was more than a wise teacher. And if he was more than a wise teacher, they would have to listen to what he said differently. Maybe he was God. Maybe he was going to be killed. Maybe he was going to rise again. Maybe there was a power in him that was all that.

3. Jesus was greater than even the people they respected.

Elijah and Moses were heroes. They had seen God. They had resisted evil. And little kids learned those stories, even then. Peter, John, and James grew up with Moses stories and Elijah stories.

On this day, they SAW the people they had heard about, and discovered that these heroes deferred to Jesus. They encouraged him. He was as bright as they were.

We can worship heroes. But if we miss the one that they are looking at, we won’t have our lives changed. And Jesus did go home with them that night, not with Moses and Elijah. He really did care about them.

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Part four tomorrow.

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About Jon Swanson

Social media chaplain. Author of "Lent For Non-Lent People" and "A Great Work: A Conversation With Nehemiah For People (Who Want To Be) Doing Great Works." Writer of 300wordsaday.com. I help people understand. Understand some of the Bible. Understand what Lent can be about. Understand what it means to follow.