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Easter Transfiguration.

Easter Transfiguration.

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Published by glennpease
BY WILLIAM BURNET WRIGHT



And after six days Jesus taketh with him Peter, and
James, and John, and bringeth them np into a high
mountain apart by themselves ; and he was transfigured
before them. — Mark ix. 2. (R. Y.)
BY WILLIAM BURNET WRIGHT



And after six days Jesus taketh with him Peter, and
James, and John, and bringeth them np into a high
mountain apart by themselves ; and he was transfigured
before them. — Mark ix. 2. (R. Y.)

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Published by: glennpease on Apr 10, 2014
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EASTER TRASFIGURATIO. BY WILLIAM BURET WRIGHT And after six days Jesus taketh with him Peter, and James, and John, and bringeth them np into a high mountain apart by themselves ; and he was transfigured before them. — Mark ix. 2. (R. Y.) The last clause of the text should, I think, be read, not " He was transfigured before them," but " He was transfigured before them'' For the fact which Mark would make prominent is not that Jesus was trans- figured, but that he was transfigured in the presence of certain witnesses. 1. The reading I suggest is favored by the Greek laws of emphasis. 2. The fact it brings to lio4it is corrob- orated by many intimations in the Gospels. 3. The lessons it reveals the Master teach- ing are precisely those which Peter, James, and John appear to have supremely needed at that critical time when this transfigura- tion occurred. I. Transfiguration does not seem to have been an unusual experience with our Lord. EASTER: TRASFIGURATIO. 223 We read of several occasions when He as- sumed an appearance which inspired un-
 
usual awe in those who beheld Him. There were times when even the disciples, accus- tomed though they were to familiar inter- course with Jesus, " durst not ask Him any questions." When, with a whisp of straw, He drove the money-changers from the tem- ple, the subjection of the crowd to a single man, and He the man of whom they had lightly spoken as only " the carpenter's son," is best explained by supposing that they saw in Him a supernal majesty. When the multitude led by soldiers approached Geth- semane to apprehend Him, — remember He had come directly from communing with heavenly beings, — there was something in the appearance of the solitary and defence- less One which moved them to draw back and fall upon the ground in attitude of wor- ship. 1 I do not infer that on these occasions 1 It is possible that the same soldiers who arrested Jesus at Gethsemane were on guard during- his trial before Pilate. If so, the touch of rancor in their mocking may have been caused by their vivid recollection of the hom- age they had been unconsciously constrained to pay Him the preceding night. The scarlet robe and the crown of thorns may be proofs of the profound awe felt by the Roman soldiers before Him who the next day appeared 224 TEE WORLD TO COME. our Lord appeared altogether as He was seen upon the mount, but that his appearance was the same in kind, though less in degree ; that a change occurred which affected beholders with the awe expressed by Peter when he spoke, " not knowing what he said ; " an awe which made men fear to gaze or to intrude
 
upon Him. Again, that Jesus went apart by himself into mountains to pray, we are told in a way that implies this to have been his cus- tom. o mortal eyes observed Him at those times of solitary communion with his Father. But on more than one occasion we are told that angels came and " ministered " to Him; " strengthened Him," "comforted Him." Keep these facts in mind. Remem- ber that they were known to the narrator ; remember also that on every other occasion when Jesus went "apart to pray," He dis- missed his disciples and went alone, and read with the right emphasis, " And after six days Jesus taketh with Him Peter, and James, and John, and leadeth them up into a high to them an ordinary man. In coarse natures the reaction from extreme reverence to none at all is generally vindic- tive. Those Frenchmen who had bowed lowest before the crown compelled their king to wear the red cap. EASTER: TRASFIGURATIO. 225 mountain apart by themselves and was trans- figured before them." To my mind the implication of the nar- rative is plainly this : " Jesus was accus- tomed to go apart to pray, — to ascend mountains and spend whole nights in devo- tion. He was accustomed to meet heavenly beings there. He was accustomed to shine among them as the light. All this we know. But once He took three earthly witnesses, and permitted them to see those angels, who

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