Saturday, August 27, 2011

The Transfiguration

The Transfiguration
By His Holiness Pope Shenouda III

The first transfiguration of our nature is that God created us in his own image and likeness.

The second transfiguration is what took place on the Mount of Tabor. During the transfiguration, the Lord Jesus Christ did not appear alone, but Moses and Elijah were with Him, representing humanity. It is the transfiguration with which our nature will be crowned in glory.

The third transfiguration is the forthcoming resurrection, when we rise in spiritual bodies of light, like the Lord's body of glory! We will be like God's angels in Heaven. The feast of the transfiguration reminds us of the glory that our nature will receive.

God has not deprived us from glory. He has taken us from one glory to another, "For whom he foreknew, he also pre-destined to be conformed to the image of His Son ... He also glorified." Rom 8 : 29-30

In the transfiguration that is to come, we will be completely free from sin and from spiritual combats. We will be free from the material, as we take off this body and leave the whole materialistic world. The corruptible will be clothed in incorruption, "because the creation itself also will be delivered from the bondage of corruption into the glorious liberty of the children of God," and, "... eagerly waiting for the adoption, the redemption of our body." Rom 8: 21 & 23. "We will be free from sin when we receive the crown of righteousness". 2 Tim 4: 8

This righteousness will make us forget whatever relates to sin. There would not be sin and we would not know it, remember it or fight against it. We will be completely free from it and we will live in righteousness, "in the glorious liberty of the children of God."

That illustrates accurately the saying that, "Whoever is born of God does not sin, and the wicked one does not touch him." 1 John 5: 18. We are not going to transfigure alone, but the whole city if God’s Heavenly Jerusalem that had no need of the sun or the moon to shine in it, "for the glory of God illuminated it." Rev 22: 5.

Permanent joy is the characteristic of this transfiguration. Sorrow, pain and fear, the effects of sin, will all disappear.


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