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Lesson 24

The last section of verses describing the transfiguration reads basically the same as the rest, but the last verse which is often left out as unimportant, sheds light on what is really happening in the story. Using all verses to gain a full understanding is crucial when studying the Bible. In verse 9 Jesus describes what the disciples saw was a vision from God. A dream from God is a special revelation that is received when asleep. We know the things we see or hear in a dream do not have a physical presence. Rarely given, visions are similar but we are awake when they come to us. It might register with all our waking senses but they too lack a physical presence. An unintended bystander would not be aware of the vision. Despite having no physical presence, the disciples heard with their ears and saw with their eyes the vision of Moses and Elias talking to Jesus. How do you define a vision? Do you always believe what Jesus says? If it was not a vision, was Jesus wrong? Can a person believe the transfiguration took place as a real physical event and still completely believe Jesus without contradiction?

Matthew 17:1-9 King James Version
1 And after six days Jesus taketh Peter, James, and John his brother, and bringeth them up into an high mountain apart, 2 And was transfigured before them: and his face did shine as the sun, and his raiment was white as the light.3 And, behold, there appeared unto them Moses and Elias talking with him. 4 Then answered Peter, and said unto Jesus, Lord, it is good for us to be here: if thou wilt, let us make here three tabernacles; one for thee, and one for Moses, and one for Elias. 5 While he yet spake, behold, a bright cloud overshadowed them: and behold a voice out of the cloud, which said, This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased; hear ye him. 6 And when the disciples heard it, they fell on their face, and were sore afraid. 7 And Jesus came and touched them, and said, Arise, and be not afraid. 8 And when they had lifted up their eyes, they saw no man, save Jesus only. 9 And as they came down from the mountain, Jesus charged them, saying, Tell the vision to no man, until the Son of man be risen again from the dead.

2 Peter 1:16-18 King James Version
16 For we have not followed cunningly devised fables, when we made known unto you the power and coming of our Lord Jesus Christ, but were eyewitnesses of his majesty. 17 For he received from God the Father honour and glory, when there came such a voice to him from the excellent glory, This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased. 18 And this voice which came from heaven we heard, when we were with him in the holy mount.

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