Transfiguration Verses Transformation

Luke 9:29 And as he (Jesus) was praying, the appearance of his face was altered, and his clothing became dazzling white. 

Jesus’ transfiguration can both be a reality check and inspire hope.

The reality check is that we cannot be transfigured as Jesus was transfigured.  When Jesus was transfigured, He revealed His glorious nature as true God. The very appearance of His face was altered and even his clothes become dazzling white. We, however, do not share Jesus’ divine nature. We are created beings who were born in sin and continue to sin. We can never experience Jesus’ transfiguration. 

Yet the transfiguration also gives us hope. 

The author of Hebrews tells us that Jesus was without sin. This means Jesus not only lived a sinless life, but He was not born in sin. Why? Because Jesus is true God, as we are reminded by His transfiguration. In His death, Jesus earned the forgiveness of sins for the world. Through God-given faith in Jesus, we personally have received this forgiveness of sins. 

Therefore, we’re told in Philippians chapter 3, when Jesus returns, our lowly bodies will be transformed to be like Jesus’ glorious body. No, we will not be transfigured as Jesus was transfigured. God is the creator; we are the created. That said, God will still transform our humble vessels into glorious bodies. This will be such a wonderous and gracious gift of God. 

(A Second Look devotions are written for the congregations of the Ohio District – LCMS.)


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