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  • Writer's picturePastor Paul Harris

Transfiguration Sunday 2024

February 11, 2024

"Transfiguration Sunday is a day when we remember a moment when Jesus’ appearance changed, and he started shining bright with God’s glory. And just like that dazzling moment, we can also shine bright with love and support for others." —United Methodist Church worship resources

Hi Friends,


We celebrate a special Sunday in the life of the church and in our liturgical calendar this week, Transfiguration Sunday. Mark 9:2-9 tells the story of Jesus and three of the disciples who made a journey to a mountaintop. As they were on the mountain with Jesus, the three experienced a glimpse of the glory of God as Jesus was transfigured before them (μετεμορφώθη ἔμπροσθεν αὐτῶν).


The koine Greek language uses the word metemorphōthē that we translate as "being transformed" to indicate the action in which Jesus 'changed form.' Peter, James, and John also experience a "vision" of Elijah and Moses "appearing" and talking with Jesus. The brilliance of this happening terrified the disciples and at first they were without words, breathless in the moment.


WOW! What a story. The gospel writer is thought to be John Mark, a part-time associate of both Peter and Paul, who would have had direct confirmation of this event from Peter. As an eyewitness, Peter's voice is what we hear in the narration. It is also Peter who finally finds words to speak asking Jesus if they should build booths (tents or tabernacles) to mark the occasion of this glimpse into the holiness of Jesus. (see Exodus 29:42 for an indication of Peter's desire to recognize this holy event and Leviticus 23:33-44 for the tradition of the Festival of Booths).


The significance of this transformation to the early church was important as three of the four gospel writers tell of it. Mark's gospel hinges on this account. The ministry of Jesus in Galilee precedes it and the ministry toward the cross follows. I wonder what a story like this could mean for us today? Please find time to read the story this week and spend some time in prayer discerning the glory of God in Jesus. And then JOIN US SUNDAY as we speak more about "Glimpses in Holiness."


Pastor Paul

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