Project 119: Mark 9:2-29

 |  Project 119

This week's devotions are written by MBBC intern Allison McSwain. 

“Plan A”

On the Mount of Transfiguration, Jesus reveals His divine glory to Peter, James, and John with some special guests present. Here we get the most beautiful picture of the seamlessness of God’s plan: Moses and Elijah, two prominent Old Testament men of God, appear with Jesus. What a holy moment—the Law, represented by Moses, and the Prophets, represented by Elijah—finally find their fulfillment in Jesus Christ. I can only imagine what their conversation was like. I picture Moses and Elijah, eyes wide, thinking “This is it! This is what it was all for.”

It is crucial that we realize that Jesus was not God’s “plan B.” After the Resurrection, Jesus enlightens some men of this truth while walking the road to Emmaus: “And beginning with Moses and all the Prophets, He interpreted to them in all the Scriptures the things concerning himself” (Luke 24:27). From the beginning of time, God our Father had been planning to send His Son to reconcile sinful humanity to Himself. Moses, Elijah, Isaiah, John the Baptist—all of history, all of Scripture, points to Jesus Christ, Son of the Living God.

Peter makes a mistake here. He proposes making tents for Moses, Elijah, and Jesus, wrongly putting Jesus on the same level as the other two. Peter wants to make an earthly habitation for a clearly divine Jesus. How often you and I want to pull Jesus down to our level just the same. We hide Jesus, God incarnate, away in the box we designate for Him instead of beholding His glory. We live in a culture that readily accepts Jesus as a great moral teacher, yet frowns upon his divinity. Are you guilty of forgetting that Jesus is fully God as well as man, able to do immeasurably more than we ask or imagine (Ephesians 3:20)? Do you doubt His power, believing that He cannot fix your situation?

On days when we forget who Jesus really is, may our prayer be that of the father in verse 24: “I believe; help my unbelief!” Behold the glory of God’s Son today—His “plan A,” our salvation.

Mark 9:2-29 (ESV):

2 And after six days Jesus took with him Peter and James and John, and led them up a high mountain by themselves. And he was transfigured before them, 3 and his clothes became radiant, intensely white, as no one on earth could bleach them. 4 And there appeared to them Elijah with Moses, and they were talking with Jesus. 5 And Peter said to Jesus, “Rabbi, it is good that we are here. Let us make three tents, one for you and one for Moses and one for Elijah.” 6 For he did not know what to say, for they were terrified. 7 And a cloud overshadowed them, and a voice came out of the cloud, “This is my beloved Son; listen to him.” 8 And suddenly, looking around, they no longer saw anyone with them but Jesus only.

9 And as they were coming down the mountain, he charged them to tell no one what they had seen, until the Son of Man had risen from the dead. 10 So they kept the matter to themselves, questioning what this rising from the dead might mean. 11 And they asked him, “Why do the scribes say that first Elijah must come?” 12 And he said to them, “Elijah does come first to restore all things. And how is it written of the Son of Man that he should suffer many things and be treated with contempt?13 But I tell you that Elijah has come, and they did to him whatever they pleased, as it is written of him.”

14 And when they came to the disciples, they saw a great crowd around them, and scribes arguing with them. 15 And immediately all the crowd, when they saw him, were greatly amazed and ran up to him and greeted him. 16 And he asked them, “What are you arguing about with them?”17 And someone from the crowd answered him, “Teacher, I brought my son to you, for he has a spirit that makes him mute. 18 And whenever it seizes him, it throws him down, and he foams and grinds his teeth and becomes rigid. So I asked your disciples to cast it out, and they were not able.” 19 And he answered them, “O faithless generation, how long am I to be with you? How long am I to bear with you? Bring him to me.”20 And they brought the boy to him. And when the spirit saw him, immediately it convulsed the boy, and he fell on the ground and rolled about, foaming at the mouth. 21 And Jesus asked his father, “How long has this been happening to him?” And he said, “From childhood. 22 And it has often cast him into fire and into water, to destroy him. But if you can do anything, have compassion on us and help us.” 23 And Jesus said to him, “‘If you can’! All things are possible for one who believes.”24 Immediately the father of the child cried out and said, “I believe; help my unbelief!” 25 And when Jesus saw that a crowd came running together, he rebuked the unclean spirit, saying to it, “You mute and deaf spirit, I command you, come out of him and never enter him again.”26 And after crying out and convulsing him terribly, it came out, and the boy was like a corpse, so that most of them said, “He is dead.” 27 But Jesus took him by the hand and lifted him up, and he arose. 28 And when he had entered the house, his disciples asked him privately, “Why could we not cast it out?” 29 And he said to them, “This kind cannot be driven out by anything but prayer.”