Preparing our hearts, minds, and souls to hear and reflect upon the Word of God.
Prayer of focus
Almighty God, on the mountain you showed your glory in the transfiguration of your Son. Give us the vision to see beyond the turmoil of our world and to behold the king in all his glory; through your Son, Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever. Amen
Our readings from Scripture, Exodus and Matthew, are a theophany and a Christophany. In Exodus we have a theophany. A theophany is the visible manifestation of God to God’s people. In Matthew we have a Christophany. A Christophany is the visible manifestation of Jesus as Christ.
The theophany in Exodus comes with Moses on the Mountain and is part of the confirmation or ratification of the covenant God established with Israel through the Ten Commandments. We read in Exodus 24:12 “The LORD said to Moses, ‘Come up to me on the mountain and stay here, and I will give you the tablets of stone, with the law and the commands I have written for their instruction.’” This verse is reminiscent of Exodus 19 where Moses ascends the mountain going up to God. Why does Moses go up the mountain? Moses goes up because in Exodus 18 while visiting with his father-in-law Jethro, he is asked by Jethro why he sits as judge for the people. Moses’ response is “Because the people come to me to seek God’s will.”
To seek God’s will. Is it possible that God’s will is revealed or visible in the Ten Commandments? Is it possible God’s will is a manifestation of God? Is it possible that the Ten Commandments are more than ethical or moral laws/guidelines for living?
The way of life for the Israelites, as well as for you and me, is to live in accordance to God’s standard. Living in God’s standard reveals God, not only to us, but to the world. In other words, God becomes visible to us and the world through our living by God’s standard.
The Christophany in Matthew 17 better known as the Transfiguration of Jesus is the manifestation of Christ. From Matthew 3:17 “This is my Son, whom I love; with him I am well pleased”; to Matthew 17:5 “This is my Son, whom I love; with him I am well pleased”; we see God – Jesus, Immanuel – God with us (Matthew 1:23). Now on the mountain with Peter, James, and John present we see Immanuel in glory.
Take a moment and quiet your heart, mind, and soul … where do you see God today?