Jesus is the Messiah

08-06-2023Weekly ReflectionFr. Anthony Okolo, C.S.Sp, V.F.

“The Transfiguration reflects Christ’s divinity in an extra ordinary way. Just as at His baptism, the voice of his Father was heard calling Christ his ‘beloved son’. Moses and Elijah both encountered God on a holy mountain and represent the Law and the prophets. Christ at the center of the three indicates He is the center of the Revelation.”

All the three synoptic writers have an account of the transfiguration of Our Lord on the mountain. One important aspect that needs to be considered in the story of the transfiguration is what took place before the transfiguration. Matthew 17:1-9, in his own account, says after six days have passed, Luke 9:28-36 puts it after eight days have passed, while Mark 9:2-8 says after eight days have passed. All these referred to the days after Peter had declared Jesus as Messiah and the anointed one without knowing the implication of Jesus as the anointed one. Thus, Jesus explains to him that the anointed messiah means that the son man would be rejected, killed, and crucified by ordinary men. Peter could not take such a statement from Jesus and tries to tell him that such could not happen to him. The apostles were all downcast and discouraged from the explanation of Jesus not knowing what else to do. It was to encourage them and give them hope that something greater awaits them at the end that made Jesus take them up the mountain.

It was after this incident of discouragement following Jesus’ speech that Jesus took them up the mountain and God revealed to them who Jesus is and the glory that awaits all those who will bear the cross for the sake of the kingdom of God. It was also a revelation of the blessing that awaits all those who will listen to Jesus and heed His voice. The event of the transfiguration is an assurance of the glory that will accompany all those who for the sake of Christ remain steadfast amid the persecution and challenges of this life. The transfiguration is an assurance of hope that when we take up our cross and come after Jesus that we will be transfigured as He was too. The presence of Moses and Elijah, two great Old Testament prophets, is a confirmation to the apostles that Jesus is truly the anointed Messiah. The confirmation is also for us to look to Jesus with that strong eye of faith in all circumstances.

Happy Sunday to you all.

Fr. Tony Okolo C.S.Sp., V.F.