Homily for the Feast of Transfiguration, 6th of August, 2021

By Fr Evaristus Afam Ekwem OCD

The Transfiguration of Jesus was a majestic sight for the three apostles who witnessed it, as well as for the Old Testament saints, Moses and Elijah, who appeared in it. It is typical of how God speaks to us, namely, in pictures. He wants us to behold his glory and majesty in pictures that our minds can comprehend.

This was an unveiling of glory hidden in the human body of Jesus. It was a future glory revealed in a present time, just like the vision of Daniel in the first reading. Why does the Holy Spirit show us such visions? I believe it is simply to keep our eyes on who and whose we are.

We can easily forget these things since they’re not visible to the ordinary eye on a daily basis. As a result, the average Christian gets distracted with the politics and economics of the world and forgets his or her eternal and spiritual reality.

Many years before the Ascension to glory of Jesus and the establishment of the kingdom of God on earth, the Spirit gives Daniel a vision of that exact event. He sees the victorious Jesus coming to his Daddy to receive the kingdom so that you and I can rule authoritatively in his name here on earth. Elsewhere, Jesus refers to this as the coming of the Son of Man which the disciples (and many today) misinterpreted as his Second Coming. However, he had clearly said they would not have finished going through all Israel before that event.

Why is this event so important? It is the glory of Jesus and consequently our glory, and that’s what the Spirit wants us to fix our eyes on in our time. Gazing at your eternal and spiritual reality, considering and pondering it, is what transforms, not religious rules and practices.

It is also what positions you to reign in life since it reveals your authority as a king under the King of kings. In the gospel, Peter calls this ‘wonderful’. Friend, when you see yourself in your true light, you are absolutely wonderful, a marvelous sight to behold.

That’s why Satan and religion will work overtime to ensure that you see yourself as a dirty, worthless sinner. In fact, there are no proper words to describe how a believer looks in the Spirit. The vision of the Transfiguration only scratches the surface.

Like most people with their powerful iPhone cameras today, Peter wanted to capture the moment and hold it for keeps. Little did he know he was beholding his near future, after the resurrection, when Jesus came into his kingdom. In trying to capture the moment, he made a mistake most average Christians make today, of equating Jesus with God’s Old Testament servants.

This is common with those who quote Moses and Elijah to counter Jesus’ superior voice. Luckily for Peter, the Father was on hand to correct him: “This is not my servant. This is my beloved Son. I don’t relate to him according to the Law (Moses) or his mighty deeds (Elijah). I relate with him according to favour (Grace).

Listen to him, not to them, for he has accurate and precise knowledge of who I am and what I plan.” God says the same concerning every single grace-based believer. Note that immediately after the words, only Jesus stands there.

This reminds me of the popular argument between Protestants and Catholics about the *solas* . I think the only gospel should be Sola Jesus (only Jesus). In our daily renewal of our minds, we must keep our eyes on Jesus and our reality and glory in him.

He is our present and our future. In him we behold.  both a true reflection of God and a true reflection of who and whose we are. St Augustine was truly when he described Jesus as the fullness of inexhaustible abundance of incorruptible delight. I urge you never to get tired of gazing at him.

Fr Evaristus Afam Ekwem, OCD, praying with and for you.