Like The Sun

Like The Sun

“And after six days Jesus took with him Peter and James, and John his brother, and led them up a high mountain by themselves. And he was transfigured before them, and his face shone like the sun, and his clothes became white as light. And behold, there appeared to them Moses and Elijah, talking with him. And Peter said to Jesus, “Lord, it is good that we are here. If you wish, I will make three tents here, one for you and one for Moses and one for Elijah.” He was still speaking when, behold, a bright cloud overshadowed them, and a voice from the cloud said, “This is my beloved Son, with whom I am well pleased; listen to him.” When the disciples heard this, they fell on their faces and were terrified. But Jesus came and touched them, saying, “Rise, and have no fear.” And when they lifted up their eyes, they saw no one but Jesus only. And as they were coming down the mountain, Jesus commanded them, “Tell no one the vision, until the Son of Man is raised from the dead.” And the disciples asked him, “Then why do the scribes say that first Elijah must come?” He answered, “Elijah does come, and he will restore all things. But I tell you that Elijah has already come, and they did not recognize him, but did to him whatever they pleased. So also the Son of Man will certainly suffer at their hands.” Then the disciples understood that he was speaking to them of John the Baptist. And when they came to the crowd, a man came up to him and, kneeling before him, said, “Lord, have mercy on my son, for he has seizures and he suffers terribly. For often he falls into the fire, and often into the water. And I brought him to your disciples, and they could not heal him.” And Jesus answered, “O faithless and twisted generation, how long am I to be with you? How long am I to bear with you? Bring him here to me.” And Jesus rebuked the demon, and it came out of him, and the boy was healed instantly. Then the disciples came to Jesus privately and said, “Why could we not cast it out?” He said to them, “Because of your little faith. For truly, I say to you, if you have faith like a grain of mustard seed, you will say to this mountain, ‘Move from here to there,’ and it will move, and nothing will be impossible for you.” As they were gathering in Galilee, Jesus said to them, “The Son of Man is about to be delivered into the hands of men, and they will kill him, and he will be raised on the third day.” And they were greatly distressed. When they came to Capernaum, the collectors of the two-drachma tax went up to Peter and said, “Does your teacher not pay the tax?” He said, “Yes.” And when he came into the house, Jesus spoke to him first, saying, “What do you think, Simon? From whom do kings of the earth take toll or tax? From their sons or from others?” And when he said, “From others,” Jesus said to him, “Then the sons are free. However, not to give offense to them, go to the sea and cast a hook and take the first fish that comes up, and when you open its mouth you will find a shekel. Take that and give it to them for me and for yourself.”
Matthew 17


Just six days after Jesus predicted his death, he took Peter, James, and John to the top of a mountain in Galilee. This is a familiar scenario in the Bible—mountains are often where the Lord meets people. It happened with Moses, who encountered a burning bush on Mt. Sinai (Ex. 3-4). After the Israelites were freed from Egypt, they again met God on the same mountain (Ex. 19). Moses was full of awe and reverence—in response, the Lord showed mercy and established a covenant to be their God. Elijah and the prophets of Baal also had a conflict on Mt. Carmel. Both asked their respective gods to answer them - while Baal was silent, the Lord spoke and sent fire and rain (1 Kings 18). The disciples had a life-changing experience on a mountain in the Bible, an event they never forgot.

Jesus and three of his disciples journeyed up a high mountain alone. Scripture doesn't say what Jesus told them they would witness, but when they got to the top, they saw Jesus transformed, with his face shining like the sun. Moses and Elijah were also present and appeared to be talking with Jesus. Peter was amazed and suggested they build shelters and stay there. Suddenly a cloud overshadowed them, and the Father's voice came from the cloud, expressing His love and pleasure in Jesus. The disciples were frightened and fell to their faces in terror, but Jesus comforted them and told them not to be afraid. On their way back down the mountain, Jesus told them to keep the experience a secret until the Son of Man had risen, and he also explained to them that Elijah had come, referring to John the Baptist.

Little Faith

As Jesus descended the mountain, a crowd gathered to greet him. One man knelt before him and begged Jesus to heal his son, who was suffering greatly. Though his disciples had tried, they had failed to cure him. Jesus reprimanded them for their lack of faith and ordered them to bring the boy to him. Then, with a rebuke to the demon within the boy, the power of Jesus overtook it and immediately cured the boy. This left the disciples confused, as they had successfully driven out demons in the past, and they asked Jesus why they had failed. He replied that it was due to their lack of faith. Jesus then once again told them he would be killed and raised on the third day, causing them great distress.


The people of Capernaum found out Jesus had returned and asked him about taxes. Peter answered that Jesus had paid the tax, which seemed to satisfy them. Jesus then asked Peter whether kings take taxes from their sons or others. Peter understood that kings take taxes from others, so Jesus assured him that sons were exempt. To prevent further issues, Jesus told Peter to go fishing and take the first fish he caught. He said to open the mouth of the fish, and he would find a shekel for the tax. Peter quickly went to cast his line. Surprisingly, this was the case, and Jesus had dominion over all things - even his creatures. We should all pay attention to Jesus' words.





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