This week's devotions are written by MBBC Student Ministry Intern Allison McSwain.
"Like Moses, Yet Greater"
I have an art print depicting the Transfiguration on my wall at home. It’s a beautiful Greek icon showing a radiant, shining Jesus Christ at the top of the mountain. At the bottom of the mountain, three disciples lay on the ground, shielding their eyes from the streams of Christ’s glory. There are two other figures in this painting, but they are on their own, smaller mountain peaks next to Christ. These two men are identified by the Greek versions of the names Elijah and Moses. They are bowing slightly toward the glorified Christ.
The story of the Transfiguration is one we have most likely heard a million times, but I believe we fail to grasp how beautiful this event really was, as it was a unifying bridge between the Old and New Testaments. On this mountain, Jesus Christ stood next to the prophets of old. He was like them—He spoke by divine inspiration and enacted the will of God. He stood in solidarity next to the ones God had chosen to do His work. Yet, Christ was also unlike Moses and Elijah. He was God incarnate, and that was evidenced on this mountain by His dazzling glory and the voice of the Father claiming Him as His Son. He was the image of the invisible God, the only one in my painting deserving of radiant light. That’s why Moses and Elijah bow before Him in that image; they acknowledge that He is God’s chosen instrument of salvation for the nations. As the Father commanded Israel to listen to His Word through the prophets, He here commanded all of us to listen to His Son.
Thank the Lord Christ today for being more than mere man. A solely human prophet could never save us! Thanks be to God that we have a Mediator who is not only human and able to understand our condition, but who is also fully divine and able to redeem us! Jesus, You are a Prophet like Moses, yet You are greater than Moses. You did not come to abolish the Law, but to fulfill it. Thank You for establishing Your law of faith by bestowing Your grace upon us. Help us to listen to You this day.
Mark 9:2-13 (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.”