The Transfiguration part two: Mark 9:4-8
“4) Elijah appeared to them along with Moses; and they were talking with Jesus. 5) Peter *said to Jesus, “Rabbi, it is good for us to be here; let us make three tabernacles, one for You, and one for Moses, and one for Elijah.” 6) For he did not know what to answer; for they became terrified. 7) Then a cloud formed, overshadowing them, and a voice came out of the cloud, “This is My beloved Son, listen to Him!” 8) All at once they looked around and saw no one with them anymore, except Jesus alone.” Mark‬ ‭9‬:‭4‬-‭8‬ ‭
Suddenly, Elijah and Moses appeared to them and were talking to Jesus. I’ve often wondered how they recognized Moses and Elijah, but this revelation is far greater than that mystery.
Then Peter asked a foolish question; “shall I build here three tabernacles; one for You, and one for Moses, and one for Elijah?” The idea might have been a booth or temporary shelter. Peter as the servant was most likely trying to be hospitable.
Sometimes it better to remain quiet. They were terrified and Peter was compelled to say something.
Like 9:31 adds a small commentary on the conversation between Jesus, Moses and Elijah. It says; “who, appearing in glory, were speaking of His departure which He was about to accomplish at Jerusalem.” This was very different from the conversation Jesus had with His disciples which evoked a rebuke from Peter. (Mark 8:31-32) Moses and Elijah had a radically different perspective of reality.
Then a cloud formed around them and overshadowed them. This was most likely the Shekinah Glory or fire that accompanies the presence of God Almighty. (See Exodus 19:18-20, Exodus 40:34.38, 1 Kings 8:10-11, 2 Chronicles 7:1-3)
Then a voice came out of the cloud; “This is My beloved Son, listen to Him!” It was time to listen and not speak or react. We need to silence ourselves in the presence of God and listen.
Suddenly, they looked around and saw no one but Jesus alone. Like the servant of Elisha, their eyes had momentarily been opened to see the reality of the spiritual realm. (See 2 Kings 6:16-17)
As mentioned in the previous section, this experience had a profound impact on Peter. (See 2 Peter 1:16-21) It set the tone for their conversation coming down from the mountain and his understanding of the trustworthiness of prophecy.
I don’t want to stretch the comparison too far, but the day of Pentecost was a similar visitation of the fire and glory of God. (Acts 2:1-4) It inaugurated a new epoch and work of God within born-again people. Every true believer becomes a temple of the Holy Spirit. (1 Corinthians 3:16-17; 6:19-20) The power and glory of God should be present and transforming in every believer. (Acts 1:8; 2 Peter 1:2-4)
Daily Bible Commentary By Terry Baxter: Cofounder of GoServ Global
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