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Matthew 17:2 & meaning...


was transfigured before them. His face shone like the sun, and his garments became as white as the light.

Matthew 17:2


Matthew 17 [1.] After six days, Jesus took with him Peter, James, and John his brother, and brought them up into a high mountain by themselves. He was transfigured before them. His face shone like the sun, and his garments became as white as the light. Behold, Moses and Elijah appeared to them talking with him.

Matthew 17 [4.] Peter answered, and said to Jesus, “Lord, it is good for us to be here. If you want, let’s make three tents here: one for you, one for Moses, and one for Elijah.”

Matthew 17 [5.] While he was still speaking, behold, a bright cloud overshadowed them. Behold, a voice came out of the cloud, saying, “This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased. Listen to him.”


  • The Transfiguration: 

The term "transfigured" comes from the Greek word "metamorphoĊ," which means to undergo a change in form or appearance. Here, Jesus undergoes a remarkable transformation, where His appearance is transfigured before the eyes of Peter, James, and John. This event serves as a profound revelation of Jesus' divine nature and glory, affirming His identity as the Son of God (2 Peter 1:16-18).

  • His Face Shone Like the Sun: 

The radiance emanating from Jesus' face is likened to the brightness of the sun. This imagery echoes the language used in descriptions of divine manifestations throughout the Bible, such as the shining face of Moses after he encountered God on Mount Sinai (Exodus 34:29-35). The brilliance of Jesus' countenance symbolizes His divine splendor and the light of God's glory shining forth from Him (2 Corinthians 4:6).

  • His Garments Became as White as the Light: 

In addition to the radiance of His face, Jesus' garments are transformed, becoming as white as light itself. This dazzling whiteness symbolizes purity, holiness, and the divine presence. It evokes imagery of heavenly robes and underscores Jesus' identity as the sinless Son of God (Revelation 1:14; Daniel 7:9).

Significance of the Transfiguration: 

The Transfiguration is a significant event in the ministry of Jesus, as it serves multiple purposes:

Confirmation of Jesus' Identity: The Transfiguration serves as a confirmation of Jesus' identity as the Son of God, affirming His divine nature and authority (Matthew 17:5).

Anticipation of His Glory: The Transfiguration offers a glimpse of Jesus' glorified state, foreshadowing His eventual resurrection and exaltation (Philippians 2:9-11).

Preparation for His Passion: The Transfiguration strengthens Jesus and His disciples for the trials and challenges that lie ahead, particularly Jesus' impending suffering and death (Luke 9:31).

Revelation of the Kingdom: The presence of Moses and Elijah with Jesus at the Transfiguration represents the fulfillment of the Law and the Prophets in Him and points to the inauguration of the kingdom of God (Matthew 17:3).

Cross References:

2 Peter 1:16-18: Peter later reflects on the Transfiguration, affirming its significance as a powerful testimony to Jesus' divine majesty and authority.

2 Corinthians 4:6: Paul speaks of the light of the knowledge of God's glory shining in the face of Jesus Christ, highlighting the transformative power of encountering the glory of God.

Revelation 1:14: In John's vision of the glorified Christ, he describes His appearance, likening it to the brightness of the sun shining in its full strength.

In summary, Matthew 17:2 captures the awe-inspiring moment of the Transfiguration, where Jesus reveals His divine glory to His disciples. The radiant splendor of His face and garments testifies to His identity as the Son of God and anticipates His exaltation and the establishment of God's kingdom. As we reflect on this verse, may we be drawn into a deeper understanding of Jesus' majesty and be transformed by the light of His glory.

PIB Scriptures are derived from the World English Bible


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