A sermon on Mark 9: 2-9

It’s pretty easy to say Jesus is the Messiah, to join the church affirming he’s my Lord and Savior.  But there sure are a lot of reasons to wonder if that confession makes any difference outside of our little church world.  The Lord and Savior isn’t getting me an appointment for my COVID vaccine.  That Messiah sure is taking his sweet time healing my loved one.  Son of God can’t even get me a good parking spot at the Town Green on a Thursday night.

Then Jesus is “transfigured” on the mountain — we see him in a whole new way. And our lives are changed.

It’s a totally technical thing to talk about transfiguration rather than transformation, but I think it is important here.  We don’t call this Jesus’ transformation.  We are transformed – changed from the inside out – when we do accept Jesus as our Lord and Savior.  But Jesus was transfigured – nothing changed on the inside – he was still fully human and fully divine, but the outside was changed to reveal the splendor of that divinity. 

No longer is Jesus just a nice guy or a good teacher, a moral example and a challenge to the establishment.  Now Jesus is in conversations with the saints of the tradition – his clothing shines with the light of the world, the glory of the Divine that guides the lost through the wilderness and the oppressed into freedom.  And if you don’t get the message from the transfiguration, there’s always that voice thundering from the clouds: ““This is my Son, the Beloved; listen to him!”

“Listen to him.”  “Listen to him.”  Listen for him. Watch for him.  Because sometimes we too forget that Jesus is the Messiah – and we need these moments when we see the Divinity truly at work in the world to remind us – Jesus is not just Lord and Savior on Sunday – but every day of our lives.

If you want to hear more of this sermon, you can find the whole story here.