6 August 2018Luke 9:28-36
"Then a voice from the cloud came a voice that said, 'This is my Son, my Chosen; listen to him!'" (v. 35)
Psalm: Psalm 47
Mountains have always held an attraction to people. "Why did you want to climb it?" is the question posed to the mountaineer, only to receive the reply, "Because it is there". On a fine day in the Lake District you can see a long line of people making the trek to the top of the hill or mountain.
Mountains are important in the Bible. It was on the top of Mount Sinai that Moses received the ten commandments (Exodus 20), it was on the mountain of Horeb that Elijah heard the voice of God (1 Kings 19:11-18). And it was on the mountain that Jesus was transfigured, and Peter, John and James saw him as they have never seen him before.
Why mountains have a spiritual importance is not clear. Maybe it is the elemental landscape without features and so does not prove a distraction. Maybe it is the feeling that being up high, you can see more of God's creation or perhaps there is the idea you are closer to God. But that fascination continues today.
God's words "This is my Son, my Chosen; listen to him!" are similar, yet different to God's words at Jesus' Baptism "You are my Son, the Beloved" (Luke 3:22). Jesus has moved from being "the Beloved", to "my Chosen". It suggests a move in the gospel story. Jesus clearly had a task to fulfil. And the three disciples are privy to that - perhaps that is why they remained silent and told no one (verse 36). But the silence and secrecy could not (and would not) like for long.
- Where do you feel close to God? If it is a place far away, how can you find a place closer to home?
- What is your reaction to hearing God's words spoken to you: 'This is my son/daughter, my chosen; listen to them"?
- What do you have to say, that others need to listen to?