Jesus Christ, in speaking to His disciples, often told them
that He was to go to Jerusalem to receive suffering at the hands of the high priests and
the teachers of the Law, that he was to be killed and
to be resurrected on the third day. The apostles believed that Jesus was the
long awaited Messiah, but they were deeply distressed at the thought of His
suffering and could not bear to hear that He, the Son of God and the Messiah,
would be degraded, would suffer, and would die. The disciples still had earthly
hopes about the glory of the Savior. They hoped that Jesus would free Judea from
the Roman Empire's rule and would restore the Kingdom
To strengthen their faith for the time when they
would see Him suffering and to take their minds off earthly thoughts, Jesus
Christ showed His disciples His Divine glory. Not long before His suffering,
Jesus took three of His disciples - Peter, James, and John - and led them up a
high mountain, Tabor, to pray. Walking a little distance from them, He began to
pray while the exhausted disciples fell asleep. When they awoke, they saw their
Teacher transfigured: His face shone like the sun, and His clothing was white
as snow and glittering like light. And standing with Jesus were two prophets -
Moses and Elijah - who appeared in their heavenly glory to talk with Jesus
about how He would soon fulfill God's purpose by suffering and dying in Jerusalem.
"When they awakened, they saw His glory and
the two men who stood with Him. And it came to pass as they departed from Him,
Peter said unto 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 Elijah' - not
knowing what he was saying" (Luke -33).
"While he yet spoke, behold, a bright cloud overshadowed them. And behold,
a voice out of the cloud, said, 'THIS IS MY BELOVED
WHOM I AM WELL PLEASED. HEAR YE HIM!' And when the disciples heard it, they fell on their faces
and were sore afraid. And Jesus came and touched them and said, 'Arise, and
be not afraid.' And when they had lifted up their eyes, they saw no man,
except Jesus only. And as they came down from the mountain, Jesus charged them,
saying, 'Tell the vision to no man until the Son of Man be risen again from
the dead' (Matt. 17:5-9).
The disciples fell to the ground in fear. Jesus
came near them, touched them and said: "Arise, do not be afraid." The
disciples arose and saw Jesus as He always was. When they were descending from
the mountain, Jesus commanded them not to speak of what they had seen until He
had arisen from the dead.
After such proof of His Divine glory, the
apostles' faith in Christ as the Son of God could no longer be swayed.