Saturday, August 05, 2006
Feast, Transfiguration of the Lord
August 6, 2006
Feast, Transfiguration of the Lord - B
DANIEL 7:9-10, 13-14
As I watched: Thrones were set up and the Ancient One took his throne.
His clothing was bright as snow, and the hair on his head as white as
wool; his throne was flames of fire, with wheels of burning fire. A
surging stream of fire flowed out from where he sat; thousands upon
thousands were ministering to him, and myriads upon myriads attended
him. The court was convened and the books were opened. As the visions
during the night continued, I saw: One like a Son of man coming, on the
clouds of heaven; When he reached the Ancient One and was presented
before him, The one like a Son of man received dominion, glory, and
kingship; all peoples, nations, and languages serve him. His dominion
is an everlasting dominion that shall not be taken away, his kingship
shall not be destroyed.
2 PETER 1:16-19
Beloved: We did not follow cleverly devised myths when we made known to
you the power and coming of our Lord Jesus Christ, but we had been
eyewitnesses of his majesty. For he received honor and glory from God
the Father when that unique declaration came to him from the majestic
glory, "This is my Son, my beloved, with whom I am well pleased." We
ourselves heard this voice come from heaven while we were with him on
the holy mountain. Moreover, we possess the prophetic message that is
altogether reliable. You will do well to be attentive to it, as to a
lamp shining in a dark place, until day dawns and the morning star
rises in your hearts.
Jesus took Peter, James, and his brother John, and led them up a high
mountain apart by themselves. And he was transfigured before them, and
his clothes became dazzling white, such as no fuller on earth could
bleach them. Then Elijah appeared to them along with Moses, and they
were conversing with Jesus. Then Peter said to Jesus in reply, "Rabbi,
it is good that we are here! Let us make three tents: one for you, one
for Moses, and one for Elijah." He hardly knew what to say, they were
so terrified. Then a cloud came, casting a shadow over them; from the
cloud came a voice, "This is my beloved Son. Listen to him." Suddenly,
looking around, they no longer saw anyone but Jesus alone with them. As
they were coming down from the mountain, he charged them not to relate
what they had seen to anyone, except when the Son of Man had risen from
the dead. So they kept the matter to themselves, questioning what
rising from the dead meant.
It seems that whenever God chooses to reveal something important, he
reveals it on a mountain. It was on a mountain where God revealed his
covenant with Abraham who was about to sacrifice his son Isaac in
obedience to God. It was on a mountain where God gave Moses his mission
to lead his people out of slavery from Egypt. It was also on a mountain
where God gave his commandments to Moses. It was also on a mount where
Jesus gave us the "beatitudes" that revealed to us what the Kingdom of
God is. The Transfiguration also took place on top of a mountain. What
does all these mean?
Let us look as some of the significant incidents that had took place in
the Transfiguration. First, Jesus calls three of his disciples to join
him on the mountain. He had chosen Peter, John and James. Why not all
of the apostles? Was it because Jesus sees the necessary qualities and
potentials in these three that stood out from the rest? Or was he
playing favorites? In obedience and love for their Master, the three
responded to his invitation by joining him on the mountain. The three
apostles would also be present at the agony of Jesus in the Garden of
Gethsemane. History will reveal the Jesus entrusted Peter with the keys
to the Kingdom and named him the first leader of his Church. We also
know from Scriptures that John was called the disciple whom Jesus
loved. James was condemned to death by Herod Agrippa and beheaded in
the year 44 A.D. He was the first martyr among the apostles.
The second significant incident was Jesus' Transfiguration in their
presence. This was a supernatural occurrence, an event that they had
never seen before. What an awe-inspiring sight it must have been! Jesus
appears to them with Moses and Elijah. Moses represented the LAW and
covenant while Elijah represented the PROPHETS. Jesus completed the
cast of God's revelation because the Law and the Prophets all pointed
towards God's revelation through Jesus, who is "the Way, the Truth and
the Life". On the mountain, God spoke to them: "This is my Son, the
Beloved. Listen to him." It's no wonder they were in a loss of words
while they pondered the consolation. Then they offered to pitch tents
to accommodate their visitors while continuing to experience the
effects of being in the presence of the divine.
However, their "dream stage" was cut short. This was the third
significant incident. Suddenly, everything returns to what it was
before the Transfiguration. They had to again face reality: "There was
work to be done!" Ironically, the trek down the mountain (figuratively
speaking) was more difficult than the trek up. They were asked not to
reveal what they had seen on the mountain until such time they will be
able to understand them. Jesus had been preparing them to accept his
eventual arrest and execution because he knew that this would shatter
their ideas about their King. He knew that eventually, all that he had
taught them would make sense after all the events have occurred. He
would be relying on their faith, hope and love.
Just like the apostles, we are all invited by God to climb the
mountain. God will give us our moments of consolation. But the real
test would come when we have descended from the mountain to face the
challenges of life. Will our perception of God change when we are
burdened and overwhelmed with the frustrations in life? Because of our
weakness, will we deny Jesus like Peter? Will we be like the apostles
and abandon him because we cannot cope with our fear?
We hope, at those moments, God will give us the grace to recognize him,
that his love help us win back our dignity, and that his strength will
enable us to continue life's challenges together with him. Also this
time, we hope that our sights will be directed towards the eternal.
We pray ...
-for a deep and profound respect for life, especially for the unborn.
-for wisdom and guidance for Jasmin on her exam
-for the personal intentions of Lydia and Jennette
-for thanksgiving for the birthday of Camille Torres
-for the speedy recovery of Matthew C.
-for the healing of J. P.
-Birthday: Elena U. Ngo
-In Memoriam (+): Theresa Yang
-Prayer Intention: Margarita Tan
-Prayer Intention: Miguel Enrico Raphael Chua
-for all the prayer intentions in the MTQ Dailyprayer Diary.
-for world peace and reconciliation.
Finally, we pray for one another, for those who have asked our
prayers and for those who need our prayers the most.
Have a good day!
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