GHS 146: FACE TO FACE MINISTER: Pastor W.F Kumuyi
Text – Mark 9:1-8; 2 Peter 1:16-19
This is an account of the transfiguration of the Lord Jesus Christ as He went to the Mount with His disciples, Peter, James and John, and those disciples saw the glory of the coming Kingdom; they saw the glory of God coming upon Him, His resplendent glory. The glory splendour of the Transfiguration was a great encouragement to them. What then is the significance of the transfiguration, and what are we to get out of this experience? Christ had told His disciples of His death and they were sorrowful, but He wanted to assure them that that death will not be the final end of their Master and the Saviour. So, He predicted that His glory was going to come and there were people standing there that would see the manifestation of that glory even before they saw death; and as He predicted so they saw it fulfilled. We know that whatever He had said, promised, prophesied and predicted will surely come to pass. Also, He had spoken about His death on the Cross, and that they will be sorrowful because of His shameful and painful death, but that was not going to be the end; there will be a crown after the cross, and dominion after death. Also, they had seen Him humiliated by sinful and wicked men, but that humiliation will not be the end of their Master, Lord and Saviour, they will see His honour and glory. As Elijah and Moses came to talk and fellowship with Christ, the disciples saw and believed in the Lord more and more. Also, they had seen the miracles that He performed that transformed other people, but this transfiguration was the manifestation of the majesty of God upon Him to transform Christ. At this transfiguration, they saw Moses who died and Elijah who was translated into Heaven as a foreshadow of the Rapture. This tells us that when a saint dies, that is not the end of his life; we are going to enter into glory, after we leave this earth. The disciples also heard the voice of God as the cloud surrounded them, “And there was a cloud that overshadowed them: and a voice came out of the cloud, saying, this is my beloved Son: hear him” (Mark 9:7). The voice was a confirmation of their faith in Christ as the Son of God. God’s declaration banished all fears and doubts in their hearts as they witnessed the transfiguration. Peter later wrote about this eye-witness experience to confirm it in his Epistles (2 Peter 1:16-19). What we are learning today will be an encouragement to everyone, that whatever Christ has promised, predicted and prophesied will surely come to pass. Whatever cross you are bearing today will pass and the crown will come; and whatever is the problem and persecution, that you think death will come, dominion will overtake that death in Jesus’ name. Maybe you feel humiliated today, but your honour will come, and the abased will be exalted in Jesus’ Name. Lastly, He worked miracles on other people but now is the majesty, manifestation and transformation of the Lord Jesus Christ. As we follow Christ, whatever good or miracle we do to others, a greater manifestation will come upon us as believers in Jesus’ Name. They saw Moses and Elijah at this transfiguration; so also we will see again those who have died and gone to heaven, for they have not died in vain. Moses represents the saints who have died, while Elijah represents the saints who have not died but will be raptured as Elijah was taken up into heaven. At this coming glory, all the saints who have died in Christ and those of us who are alive will be raptured to be with Christ forever and ever. You will not miss that opportunity. The declaration by God gives us assurance, and as we believe that Jesus is the Son of God, there is going to be a confirmation and we shall partake of His glory eventually.
POINT 1: THE VALIDATION OF THE TESTIMONY OF HIS GLORY
Mark 9:1; Matthew 16:26-28; 24:30; 25:31; John 12:38-41; 1 Corinthians 2:7-8; James 2:1; Mark 13:24-27; Luke 21:24-27; 2 Peter 1:16-18; 1 Peter 4:14-18; Colossians 3:1-4
He had already said it that those who were standing there, some of them will not see death until they see the Son of Man coming in His Kingdom and glory. This transfiguration is a validation of that coming glory as predicted by Christ. “And he said unto them, Verily I say unto you, That there be some of them that stand here, which shall not taste of death, till they have seen the kingdom of God come with power” (Mark 9:1). Anytime He uses that word, ‘verily’ He means ‘certainly, with no shadow of doubt’. So, He was saying certainly some of them would not taste death until they see the preview, manifestation of the Kingdom of God coming with power, majesty and glory. “For the Son of man shall come in the glory of his Father with his angels; and then he shall reward every man according to his works” (Matthew 16:27). This refers to Christ’s future glory, after His suffering, death for our sins, burial, resurrection and ascension to heaven, but a time will come when He will return in His glory and reward all men according to their works. But then the transfiguration was a preview of the testimony Christ had given of His future glory and that some will have the privilege of having a preview of that coming glory (Matthew 16:28). “When the Son of man shall come in his glory, and all the holy angels with him, then shall he sit upon the throne of his glory” (Matthew 25:31). Neither death, humiliation nor the Cross was the final thing, there is the coming glory. Our Lord Jesus Christ is the Lord of Glory. So, whatever we see the world do today to humiliate Jesus that is not the final end, His glory will come. And for us as believers, whatever the world does against us to humiliate or persecute us that is not the end, our glory will come. You will be with Him and share in His glory if you are born again, sanctified and living in expectation of the Lord’s coming. Prophet Isaiah saw the glory of the Son of God even before He came to this world (John 12:38-41). And what we are looking at today is the confirmation and affirmation of the glory of the Son of God. Those Israelites who persecuted the Lord Jesus Christ did not understand His coming glory. Likewise, the people who persecute believers today do not understand our coming glory. So never mind, just be patient, your own time of glory will come. “Which none of the princes of this world knew: for had they known it, they would not have crucified the Lord of glory” (1 Corinthians 2:8). You cannot mistake this, that Jesus Christ is the Lord of Glory, and that He is coming in the glory of the Father, “And then shall they see the Son of man coming in the clouds with great power and glory. (Mark 13:26). We should live our life knowing that Jesus is coming again to reward and recompense everyone according to their works. For us now, persecution, opposition and rejection may come, but that is not our end; glory is coming. “Beloved, think it not strange concerning the fiery trial which is to try you, as though some strange thing happened unto you: But rejoice, inasmuch as ye are partakers of Christ’s sufferings; that, when his glory shall be revealed, ye may be glad also with exceeding joy. If ye be reproached for the name of Christ, happy are ye; for the spirit of glory and of God resteth upon you: on their part he is evil spoken of, but on your part he is glorified” (1 Peter 4:12-14). As we live our lives honestly and godly in this present world, let nobody catch you doing evil at any time, otherwise that glory will not come. There is punishment for evil doers on the final day. (1 Peter 4:15-18). If you have the expectation of glory set your affection on things above and not on the earth (Colossians 3:1-4). The preview of the coming glory at the transfiguration strengthened the apostles, confirmed their faith in the Lord Jesus Christ and made them to look forward that:
i.Betrayal will not be the tragic ending of our life but glory awaits us.
ii. Judas Iscariot, Herod and Pilate with the Jews will not have the final say, the glory will still come.
iii. Death will not be a dead end, we will see the people who have died in the Lord as we remain faithful to the end.
iv. All those saints in the Old Testament are still alive in Heaven.
v. The glory that shall be revealed will far exceed the present day sufferings, so, don’t give up before the glory comes.
vi. The destiny of all men
is determined by the Son of God; and (vii) Christ is God’s Final Word.
POINT 2 : THE VISION OF HIS TRANSFIGURATION WITH GLORY
Mark 9:2-6; Hebrews 12:2-3; Luke 1:1; 2 Peter 3:17-18; Revelations 1:10-18
The vision, majesty and greatness that they saw in His Transfiguration. “And after six days Jesus taketh with him Peter, and James, and John, and leadeth them up into a high mountain apart by themselves: and he was transfigured before them. And his raiment became shining, exceeding white as snow; so as no fuller on earth can white them” (Mark 9:2-3). They had never seen Him is His glory and resplendent form like this before. When Christ does His work of transformation in our lives, no man on earth can make us better. “And Peter answered and said to Jesus, Master, it is good for us to be here: and let us make three tabernacles; one for thee, and one for Moses, and one for Elias” (Mark 9:5). Think about this, if the preview of the coming glory was so great and glorious that Peter the Apostle said that it was good for them to remain there, how about when we get to heaven at the end. There is no other place to aim at than heaven; we must get there. For Christ, the transfiguration was a telescopic granting of the joy that was set before Him. It made Him to endure whatever He would go through. Remember that this preview was before the betrayal, and crucifixion, “Looking unto Jesus the author and finisher of our faith; who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is set down at the right hand of the throne of God” (Hebrews 12:2). This is what you should be doing as well. Any time there is suffering, trial, persecution and opposition and they want to drown or overwhelm you, look away from them and look ahead at the glory to come. It was a solid, steadfast assurance that:
i.After the sweat, there will be sweet;
(ii) After the grief, greatness. (iii) After sorrow, supremacy.
(iv). After shame, stardom; (v) after suffering, splendour.
(vi). After stripes, scepter; (vii) after gall, glory;
(viii). after cross, crown. (ix) After the sinners’ contradiction, there will be the Second Coming
(x). after endurance, exaltation; (xi) after the great sacrifice there will be great salvation for so great a multitude.
Likewise, we will believe firmly and be steadfast in our faith, that no man will be able to shake us from our Christian convictions and faith in Christ Jesus. I believe that there is heaven, a coming glory and that we shall sit with Jesus Christ in splendour and glory. Therefore, be firm and steadfast in the heart, and nothing will make you fall in Jesus’ name, “Ye therefore, beloved, seeing ye know these things before, beware lest ye also, being led away with the error of the wicked, fall from your own stedfastness” (2 Peter 3:17). When the wind is blowing, remember the coming glory and be determined not to miss it. John the Beloved saw Christ in glory, and majesty, with all that He went through, the sufferings, trials and the cross, He did all that so that we as His disciples can share in His glory and splendour (Revelations 1:10-18). You will not miss that glory.
Point 3: THE VOICE FROM THE THRONE OF GLORY
Mark 9:7-8; Daniel 7:9-14; Psalms 2:7-12; Matthew 3:16-17; Deuteronomy 18:15, 18; Acts 3:22-23; 7:37; Matthew 17:4-5; Luke 9:34-35; Hebrews 1:1-2; Matthew 24:35; Revelations 22:12-21
This was the voice of the Father that came from the throne of Glory. “And there was a cloud that overshadowed them: and a voice came out of the cloud, saying, this is my beloved Son: hear him” (Mark 9:7). I believe that Jesus is the Son of God because the Father said it, Jesus Himself said it, the angels and demons affirmed that Jesus is the Son of God. “I will declare the decree: the LORD hath said unto me, Thou art my Son; this day have I begotten thee” (Psalms 2:7). The Father affirmed that Jesus is the Son of God, even in the Old Testament before His first coming. Jesus is the Final Voice of God, hear Him. He gives us the teachings of the Father, to get to the kingdom of God, hear Him. Jesus is the Final Prophet and Teacher, and He came with the teachings from heaven, we are to hear Him, “The LORD thy God will raise up unto thee a Prophet from the midst of thee, of thy brethren, like unto me; unto him ye shall hearken” (Deuteronomy 18:15). Jesus, the Son of God has come with the final teaching, word and doctrines, and we are to hear Him as commanded by God the Father. Whatever He says unto you on marriage, righteousness, purity of heart, baptism in the Holy Ghost power, watch and pray, readiness for the rapture, and repentance, hear Him. “For Moses truly said unto the fathers, A prophet shall the Lord your God raise up unto you of your brethren, like unto me; him shall ye hear in all things whatsoever he shall say unto you. And it shall come to pass, that every soul, which will not hear that prophet, shall be destroyed from among the people” (Acts 3:22-23). We are to hear Him, and whosoever will not hear Him, there is no way such can get to heaven. As you hear Him, you will live and will not perish. We will hear Him and shall live in Jesus Name (Acts 7:37). “While he yet spake, behold, a bright cloud overshadowed them: and behold a voice out of the cloud, which said, This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased; hear ye him” (Matthew 17:5). We have no excuse but to hear Him. He has spoken to us, as the Son of God, the words we need to hear and practise. God spoke unto the nation of Israel in time past by the prophets, but in these last days, He is speaking to us by His Son (Hebrews 1:1-2), and everything we have heard as the words of Christ, we should cleave steadfastly unto them and don’t let them slip from us (Hebrews 2:1-4). He had spoken about salvation, how to get to heaven, and all the words He taught and said, we are to hear Him, then shall we abide forever. By that word of Christ we are saved, sanctified, have the power of the Holy Ghost, we live and walk in the light and righteousness. His word will abide for ever. The words of the Lord Jesus Christ are full and final, the final message of the Almighty God. To be saved, be acceptable unto God, live a life that is pleasing to Him and get to heaven after life here on earth, we need to hear Him. All who reject Christ’s words, doctrines and teachings will be lost forever. You will not be lost. “Heaven and earth shall pass away, but my words shall not pass away” (Matthew 24:35). His words on salvation, purity of heart, holiness, baptism in the Holy Ghost, monogamy in marriage, shall not pass away, and we will not alter or modify His words, because we are going to Heaven. We are going to abide, hear and have grace and power to obey from Him unto the Final Day when we shall share in His glory, in Jesus’ Name. Salvation and freedom from sin, with the power to live a victorious life, is available as you come to Christ today (Revelations 22:10-17). “For I testify unto every man that heareth the words of the prophecy of this book, If any man shall add unto these things, God shall add unto him the plagues that are written in this book: And if any man shall take away from the words of the book of this prophecy, God shall take away his part out of the book of life, and out of the holy city, and from the things which are written in this book” (Revelations 22:18-19). Those who gamble, mutilate, modify, jest, joke, and disbelieve the totality of the word of God will not be in heaven.
We have seen the preview of the coming glory of Christ that we are going to partake of when Christ will come, and I pray you will not miss that glory. Make sure that you are born again, sanctified, working for the Lord and living in accordance with the words of Christ, and when He shall come, you will appear with Him in glory in Jesus Name.