As entertaining as it might have been, there is much more going on when Jesus appears with Moses and Elijah.
28 About eight days after Jesus said this, he took Peter, John and James with him and went up onto a mountain to pray. 29 As he was praying, the appearance of his face changed, and his clothes became as bright as a flash of lightning. 30 Two men, Moses and Elijah, appeared in glorious splendor, talking with Jesus. 31 They spoke about his departure, which he was about to bring to fulfillment at Jerusalem. 32 Peter and his companions were very sleepy, but when they became fully awake, they saw his glory and the two men standing with him. 33 As the men were leaving Jesus, Peter said to him, “Master, it is good for us to be here. Let us put up three shelters—one for you, one for Moses and one for Elijah.” (He did not know what he was saying.)
34 While he was speaking, a cloud appeared and covered them, and they were afraid as they entered the cloud. 35 A voice came from the cloud, saying, “This is my Son, whom I have chosen; listen to him.” 36 When the voice had spoken, they found that Jesus was alone. The disciples kept this to themselves and did not tell anyone at that time what they had seen.
One of my favorite episodes of ‘Comedians in Cars Getting Coffee’, is where Jerry Seinfeld drives a silver-blue 1963 Corvette Stingray around the grounds of the White House interviewing President Obama. I was thoroughly entertained watching a top comedian banter with the President of the United States. I didn’t want it to end!
Sitting in front of Netflix isn’t quite the same as joining Jesus on a mountain to pray, however as old testament greats Moses and Elijah are speaking to Jesus I can see why Peter says it’s good to be here. Get the cameras rolling, this is quality entertainment! Except that Jesus’ face change and lightning bright clothes weren’t special effects. The disciples were witnessing his glory.
Jesus wasn’t here to entertain. He announced the kingdom of God, healed the sick and forgave sins. When he calmed the storm, he exercised authority over the weather. He commanded authority over spiritual powers and his authority even reached to the grave as he restored a young girl’s life. Peter knew first hand that authority from being alongside Jesus and going out to proclaim the kingdom of God and heal the sick himself.
Moses and Elijah are talking about Jesus’ mission. God himself speaks to confirm Jesus is his son, the one he’s chosen to carry out his plan. Jesus welcomed and partied, but he wasn’t here to entertain. He’s on his way to Jerusalem to die, rise again and save us from the devil, sin and death.
Head: Sometimes we can mistake church and time reading the bible as mere entertainment. What does this passage say about who Jesus really is?
Heart: When we engage with the church and the bible only as entertainment we deny who Jesus is and what he came to do. Are there times where you hold back from letting the God’s people or word touch your heart or change what you do?
Hands: How can we engage our hearts and minds when we read, share, listen and love?
Prayer: Heavenly Father, thank you for your son Jesus, your amazing plan to save us, and the hope and joy we have in him. Help me to have receptive ears to listen to your word, humility to share my life, boldness to share your story, and a soft heart to love the people you have brought into my life. May the reality of who Jesus is find its way deep into our hearts.
A song to listen to: No Other Name