Luke 9: 27-36 A preview of the 2nd Coming
Intro: Begin in Phil 2 - This passage will present a good backdrop for what we are going to be looking at in Luke 9
- As we understand what is being said here it will help us better understand what is taking place there.
5 Let this mind be in you which was also in Christ Jesus, 6 who, being in the form of God, did not consider it robbery to be equal with God, 7 but made Himself of no reputation, taking the form of a bondservant, and coming in the likeness of men. 8 And being found in appearance as a man, He humbled Himself and became obedient to the point of death, even the death of the cross. 9 Therefore God also has highly exalted Him and given Him the name which is above every name, 10 that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of those in heaven, and of those on earth, and of those under the earth, & that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.
Vís 6,7 is the part I really want us to consider & the phrase - who, being in the form of God, did not consider it robbery to be equal with God
The Phrase - Being in the form of God, speaks of a permanent characteristic that was from the beginning -
Jesus didnít become God He has always been God
- Word form is interesting word - we immediately think of shape or fashion - but that is altogether wrong .
- the Brilliant Greek scholar Vincent puts it this way -
We must her dismiss from our minds the idea of "shape." The word is used in its philosophic sense, to denote that expression of being which carries in itself the distinctive nature and character of the being to whom it pertains,
- In other words - To say, that Christ was "in the form of God," is to say
that He existed as essentially one with God.
1) Not that He looked like God but that He was & is God
Now The Phrase Thought it not robbery to be equal with God is even more interesting "Robbery" is explained in scripture three ways.
A) 1st the act. "A robbing," - but Jesus didnít take anything from God
- 2nd "The thing robbed," but again He didnít steal His deity - always
existed as God - 2nd person of the trinity - Equal w/ the Father.
- 3rd "A prize," a thing to be grasped & held onto at all cost / Now
This is what Paul is talking about here .
See when Jesus humbled Himself in becoming a man - / He was still fully God / Still Deity - JN 1:1 In Beg. Word Öw/ God Ö.. was God
A)But there was an aspect of His Deity - His Godhood that He didnít
consider it to be a thing to be grasped & held onto at all cost.
- What aspect was that? HIS GLORY -
- His GLORY was concealed in a human body -
- RECALL - God told Moses that no man could see His face & live - but people looked at Jesus talked w/ Jesus all the time - HOW?
- GLORY WAS CONCEALED -
NOW W/ THAT THOUGHT IN YOUR MIND turn to Luke 9 read 27-36
This morning we are going to approach this passage a little differently than we normally would - here on Sunday morning
I want us to Begin by looking at the scene in a general sense & then move on to consider some specific things I think the Lord the Lord wants to speak to us about - today
- In looking at the passage in General - there are 4 questions that we want to answer - as we consider this scene here. ( Take notes )
1st WHAT WAS THE REASON FOR THIS EVENT
- For one thing, most commentators & Bible students believe it was Godís seal of approval to Peterís confession of faith
- You are the Christ the Son of the Living God ( Godís Amen)
- It was also the Fatherís way of encouraging the Son as He began to make His way to Jerusalem. ( Beloved Son well Pleased )
- The Father declared gave that message 3 times / 1st at His baptism
- & would speak again during that final week of the Sonís earthly
ministry recorded in (John 12:23-28).
- And He speaks here at this point - approx. 6 months before the cross - Bible tells us -Jesus began to set His face like flint toward Jerusalem.
1) Jesus began to talk openly about His death
- The transfiguration was also a witness & a reminder that Beyond the suffering of the cross would be the glory of the throne,
- In fact Jesusí own words in v. 27 indicate that the event was a demonstration (or illustration) of the promised kingdom of God.
27 "But I tell you truly, there are some standing here who shall not taste death till they see the kingdom of God."
Now Some Bible commentators have misunderstood this passage, have felt that Jesus was predicting the time of his second coming.
- that He would come w/ in the lifetime of people who were alive at that time
- But that didnít happen making it obvious that is not what Jesus
meant - So what did He mean ?
Bb) if you link this statement with what immediately follows, it is
clear what Jesus is saying. He is referring to the transfiguration
- When Jesus said that there were some there Who would not taste death until they saw this manifestation of the kingdom of God
- Peter James & John were the ones He was speaking about .
D) That is what they witnessed on the Mt. Of Transfiguration.
2nd thing to note is why did Jesus go up to the Mt.? TO PRAY
Now this is a point that is easy to pass over - but I think it is important to note - and we will touch on this point again later.
3RD WHAT HAPPENED ON THE MOUNTAIN - v. 29 As He prayed, the appearance of His face was altered, and His robe became white and glistening.
- Now Picture this scene here Luke says that His face was Altered - meaning it was Changed - there was a visible change on His face
- And His clothes began to glow -
- Listen to Matt. & Markís description - Matt. He was transfigured before them. His face shone like the sun, and His clothes became as white as the light.
- Mark - His clothes became shining, exceedingly white, like snow, such as no launderer on earth can whiten them.
D) This was truly ONE INCREDIBLE MOMENT
Now the word transfigured ( we get our word Metamorphosis from it describes a change on the outside that comes from the inside.
- It is the opposite of "masquerade," which is an outward change that does not come from within.
- This is why I took you to Phil 2 - Only time in the earthly ministry where He allowed His glory which was concealed in flesh to be unveiled.
1)That which was on the inside - the very essence of His being was
partially revealed in an outward display
C) His appearance on the outside was visibly altered as that which was on
the inside was allowed to shine forth!
D) This was the greatest confirmation of His Deity yet - as He allowed His
glory to radiate through His whole being,
- That mountaintop became a holy of holies!
4th thing we want to consider - WHO WAS W/ HIM
1st THE DISCIPLES HE TOOK - PETER, JAMES, JOHN - WHY ?
- Inner Circle / - but more importantly they would be reliable witnesses of His manifested glory,
- They would later be able to confirm the event to the other disciples and to
the rest of the church. ( Which they did)
B) Peter wrote 30 yrs later in - 2 Peter 1:16 For we did not follow cunningly devised fables when we made known to you the power and coming of our Lord Jesus Christ, but were eyewitnesses of His majesty. 17 For He received from God the Father honor and glory when such a voice came to Him from the Excellent Glory: "This is My beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased."18 And we heard this voice which came from heaven when we were with Him on the holy mountain.
- John would also later write (John 1:14). "we beheld His glory, glory as of the only begotten from the Father, full of grace and truth"
- James didnít get the chance to write about it because he was the martyred in the very early days of the Church
- No doubt as Peter implied - He bore witness of this event.
As best they could with human eyes, these three men had seen the essence of His Godhood shinning forth
- And That awesome experience was but a foretaste / a Preview of the day in which "the Son of Man is going to come again
- in the glory of His Father with His holy angels"
- John later wrote of that event In his vision on the Island of Patmos, John saw the Jesus (Rev. 1:13-16)
He was clothed in a robe reaching to the feet, and girded across His breast with a golden girdle. And His head and His hair were white like white wool, like snow; and His eyes were like a flame of fire; and His feet were like burnished bronze, when it has been caused to glow in a furnace, and His voice was like the sound of many waters. And in His right hand He held seven stars; and out of His mouth came a sharp two-edged sword; and His face was like the sun shining in its strength"
YEA - CANíT WAIT !!!!!!
But we need to consider who else was there. MOSES & ELIJAH
- Side Note - I find it interesting that the disciples seem to have no difficulty at all in recognizing instantly who these men were?
- Jesus did not say, "Now, Peter, James, and John, I'd like to have you meet Moses and Elijah." No, they knew instantly who they were.
- There will be no need for introductions in glory; we will know
immediately who people are.
C)So this account gives us something of a preview of what heaven will be
- But why Moses and Elijah? Many have puzzled over that. Why not one of the other prophets -- Isaiah, or Jeremiah, or David Ė
- or some of the other great leaders of the O.T. -- Abraham, or Noah?
- REASON IS - Moses and Elijah were the preeminent representatives of the Law and the Prophets, those two great divisions of the O.T.
- which pointed forward to the coming of Messiah Ė Moses was the great lawgiver; & Elijah, the greatest, of the prophets.
- Now the Bible declares that Jesus came to fulfill the Law & the Prophets - them appearing w/ Him - proof that it was so .
- Both of their ministries were also pictures of the earthly ministry of Jesus.
Elijah was the prophet who moved in power - in the miracles / he healed the sick - raised the dead - / no rain
- Probably the greatest feat the Lord used him in was when he challenged the enemies of God on Mt. Carmel - 450 prophets of Baal
- Defeated them there - by praying that God would send fire down from Heaven - consume his sacrifice - GOD DID IT !!!!!
1) GREAT VICTORY & DISPLAY OF GODíS POWER .
Moses on the other hand was the GREAT LIBERATOR - He was the one God used to lead Israel out of Bondage / Egypt -400 yrs.
- When these 2 spoke w/ Jesus about His death as v. 31 tells us they no doubt considered how His work on the cross would be the ultimate fulfillment of their ministries
- Manís greatest enemy would be defeated ! And - mankind would have the opportunity to be truly & totally free !
1) chains of sin & death released - through the Cross !!!!!
I also find it interesting & worth noting that these two men represent the two ways by which men have entered heaven.
- Moses entered through the normal, natural process of death. Elijah, on the other hand, was one of two men caught up to heaven without death.
- The Old Testament tells us the story of Elijah's ascension into glory, caught up in a fiery chariot,
- Believers today normally enter into glory through death, as Moses did.
- But Paul tells us that the generation of Christians who are living in the last days who will not see death - Rapture
- In 1 Cor.15:51, he says, "We shall not all sleep, but we shall all be changed, in a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trumpet."
And in First Thessalonians 4:16-17: "For the Lord himself will descend from heaven with a cry of command, with the archangel's call, and with the sound of the trumpet of God. And the dead in Christ will rise first; then we who are alive, who are left, shall be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air; and so we shall always be with the Lord."
So there are two ways by which believers can enter into glory, and these are represented here by Moses -DEATH / and Elijah - RAPTURE
Now in the remainder of our time this morning there a few things I think the Lord would have us personally consider before we go .
1st - What does the transfiguration - speak to us personally in our
walks w/ the Lord.
- The Transfiguration is a practical demonstration of what Jesus wants to do in our lives as we deny self / die to self - work of transformation.
1)The Lord has placed His Spirit in our hearts - & as we yield ourselves
to Him - He begins a work on inside that / evident on outside
B) This is what Paul spoke of in 2 Corinthians 5:17 if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; old things have passed away; behold, all things have become new.
THAT PERSON IS REALLY DIFFERENT
It is the same word that- scientist use when they talk about how the caterpillar becomes a Butterfly - ( METAMORPHISIS )
1)That Caterpillar goes into that cocoon & is never seen again - when
that incubation process is complete - out comes a Butterfly
- We are placed in Christ - & the deeper we get w/ Him / the closer we draw to Him / the more of Him comes out in our lives
- See - Completely New Person that God has made.
Oscar Cervantes is a dramatic example of Christ's power to transform lives. As a child, Oscar began to get into trouble. Then as he got older, he was jailed 17 times for brutal crimes. Prison psychiatrists said he was beyond help. But they were wrong!
During a brief time of freedom, Oscar met an elderly man who told him about Jesus. He placed his trust in the Lord and was changed into a kind, caring man.
Shortly afterward he started a prison ministry. Chaplain H. C. Warwick describes it this way: "The third Saturday night of each month is 'Oscar Night' at Soledad. Inmates come to hear Oscar and they sing gospel songs with fervor; they sit intently for over 2 hours; they come freely to the chapel altar.... What professionals had failed to do for Oscar in years of counseling, Christ did in a moment of conversion."
Ever seen pictures of People before they were saved. - Empty look - look of death - especially drivers License Picture / employee picture
- But then you see that same person in a picture after they are saved & there is this glow - look so much more alive.
B) Why is that? because there is life in them /- the H.S. in their hearts is shinning forth - & that which is on the inside is being manifested on outside
- Paul - Our bodies on the outside are growing old Ö. Inside renewedÖ
- Ever noticed how believers & especially those who are on fire for the Lord - look so much younger than - those in the world.
- Parents - crowd they used to hang w/ - 10 yrs younger
2ND WHERE DOES THIS TRANSFORMATION TAKE PLACE -
- In the place of prayer - Jesus gets alone on the top on a Mt. & begins to communicate w/ His father - change begins to take place.
- And that is where the Lord so works in our lives - we go to the Father in prayer - & as we are in His presence - Beholding His glory
- That Change begins to take place in us
- Do you have a Mt. Of transfiguration- a secret place where you can get alone w/ the Lord & just - seek His face
- I continue to exhort you & I always will to have such a place where you can go / Quiet Place / Quiet time / Quiet Heart
- Place where you can be still & Know that He is God! When is the last time you did that ?
- Living in the 90ís we are so active - such a fast placed society - we place so much on our plates
- The Church of the 90ís is right there - sometimes I question if all of the activity - is really that - important
- Easter / Purity - Crusade - so close - Exhausting
- There is a balance I know - but we need to be oh so careful that we donít end up like - Ephesus - Much action / no passion.
- Many activities & ministries - but no intimacy - they had left there first Love.
- Their love for the things of the Lord has surpassed their Love for the Lord Himself . That is oh so dangerous !
- Need to spend time in secret place - ( Pre- service worship)
3rd WHAT WERE THE DISCIPLES DOING DURING THIS TIME
- They were SLEEPING - Listen they almost missed out on this event because they were ASLEEP!!!! What a lesson for us
They MISSED much of this moment because of sleep
- See too we can miss out on the blessings of God - because we are asleep spiritually - because of spiritual apathy & complacency
C) What are some of the causes ?
1.) There is close-mindedness - We may be so set in our ideas that our minds are shut.
Not open to God doing something new or working in a certain way. the Spirit knocks at the door but we are like sleepers who will not awake.
- That can't be the Lord- God doesn't work that way
2.) There is the love of comfort.
A) We donít want to be rocked out of our comfort Zones -
- God may want to do a great and fresh work but the thought of the cost
can be like a drug that puts us to sleep
- So we miss out on His glory
3) We are so caught up in ourselves / own thing
NOTE: The Lord has ways of WAKING us
Often times The Lord will use sorrow to awaken a man, some tragedy
but in that moment, through the tears, he will see the glory.
At other times the Lord will open our eyes to The sense of need.
A) When we find that we NEED that which we can NOT supply
1) When God EMPTIES us and brings us to the end of ourselves
- NOT a pleasant process, but it does waken us to the SUPPLY of God according to His riches and glory in Christ Jesus
Now Peter does something here that is so characteristic of one who is sleeping when he should have been praying Peter declares - "Master, it is good for us to be here; and let us make three tabernacles: one for You, one for Moses, and one for Elijah"; not knowing what he said.
- He says something that is rather stupid probably trying to sound or be spiritual - Catch that last phrase - He didnít know what He said
- Result of being asleep - spiritually insensitive -
- I find myself doing that at times when I havenít been before the Lord I can say things that are so insensitive - not worth while
- Afterwards - I think - why did I say that ? So insensitive - so stupid - why did I open my big mouth .
D) Then He wants to do something when he should be just basking in the glory - the Father answers
v.34 While he was saying this, a cloud came and overshadowed them; and they were fearful as they entered the cloud. 35 And a voice came out of the cloud, saying, "This is My beloved Son. Hear Him!"
Guys that is the key - Hear Him- Get eyes on Jesus / Ears open to Jesus & you will be OK!!!!!
Peter donít build anything - be still & Listen to my Son that I love so much More you listen to Him - more You are going to become like Him.
One Last thing - Matthew 17:9 9 Now as they came down from the mountain, Jesus commanded them, saying, "Tell the vision to no one until the Son of Man is risen from the dead."
NOW IS THE TIME !!!!! JESUS IS GOD - SAVIOR - LIBERATOR - REDEEMER - TELL THE WORLD