Haven’t had a chance to polish up my notes from Sunday, but wanted to share with you the basic information and notes from my message last weekend. Thanks guys always for your thoughts, prayers and support.
The Glory Of God Reflecting Upon Us And Through Us.
Moses came down from Mount Sinai. As he came down from the mountain with the two tablets of the covenant in his hand, Moses did not know that the skin of his face shone because he had been talking with God. When Aaron and all the Israelites saw Moses, the skin of his face was shining, and they were afraid to come near him. But Moses called to them; and Aaron and all the leaders of the congregation returned to him, and Moses spoke with them. Afterward all the Israelites came near, and he gave them in commandment all that the Lord had spoken with him on Mount Sinai. When Moses had finished speaking with them, he put a veil on his face; but whenever Moses went in before the Lord to speak with him, he would take the veil off, until he came out; and when he came out, and told the Israelites what he had been commanded, the Israelites would see the face of Moses, that the skin of his face was shining; and Moses would put the veil on his face again, until he went in to speak with him.
Moses’s Radiant Face (34:29–35). There is something fitting about this entire section regarding the golden calf ending with this passage about Moses’s radiant face. What is it that God wants for his creatures? He wants us to be able to know him intimately. He wants us to reflect his character. He wants to transform our lives by the immediacy of his presence. The Israelites only knew that they needed the presence of the divine in a way that would meet their needs. And when they tried to cast the divine in a form that would be amenable to those purposes, they fell into that way of thinking described by the apostle Paul in Romans 1, which can only further alienate us from God and will ultimately destroy us. But God does not give up. And in Moses’s experience we get a glimpse of the reason why he does not give up. Moses talked with Yahweh “face to face” (33:11; cf. 34:29). Moses had not “seen” Yahweh face-to-face (cf. 33:20) but something better than that had happened: He had spoken with Yahweh. And that experience was reflected in Moses’s face (34:29–30), although he himself was completely unconscious of it. That is as it should be. Moses did not seek God so that his face would be “radiant” (see note on 34:29). He sought God because he wanted to know him and his ways (cf. 33:13). But if we have experienced the “face” of God, it must surely transform our “faces”—the expression of our lives—so that other people cannot avoid the reality, even if it might frighten them and make them uncomfortable at times. At the same time, the radiance is wholly derivative. It was when Moses had been with God again and came to share his word that the radiance was to be seen (34:34–35). The radiance did not become some permanent possession of Moses’s. Yahweh alone is self-sufficient; we are but the filaments in a light bulb through which his glory flows. Cut the filament off from the source of electrical supply and it will be as lightless as a stone. The apostle Paul got it right when reflecting on this incident. If a covenant that could only show us that we are sinners produced a glory like that, what ought to be the effect of a covenant that can reproduce the very character of Christ in us (2 Cor 3:18)? The old covenant could not produce the character it called for because it could not overcome our disposition to sin (Rom 8:3), but now the Spirit of Christ has come through the New Covenant and he is able to make “us more and more like him as we are changed into his glorious image” (2 Cor 3:18). ( Cornerstone Commentary )
“ Horns “
34:29 had become radiant. Lit., “the skin of his face sent out horns” (cf. 34:30, 35). In the Hebrew language, a “ray” or “beam” is designated by the same word used for “horn” (so also in Hab 3:4). The literal rendering explains Michelangelo’s sculpture of Moses with horns on his head. Sarna (1991:221) suggests that the root qaran [7160, 7966], with its connotation of horns, may have been chosen specifically to contrast this experience with the golden calf episode, which began this segment of the book. ( Cornerstone Commentary )
Jesus took with him Peter and John and James, and went up on the mountain to pray. And while he was praying, the appearance of his face changed, and his clothes became dazzling white. Suddenly they saw two men, Moses and Elijah, talking to him. They appeared in glory and were speaking of his departure, which he was about to accomplish at Jerusalem. Now Peter and his companions were weighed down with sleep; but since they had stayed awake, they saw his glory and the two men who stood with him. Just as they were leaving him, Peter said to Jesus, “Master, it is good for us to be here; let us make three dwellings, one for you, one for Moses, and one for Elijah” —not knowing what he said. While he was saying this, a cloud came and overshadowed them; and they were terrified as they entered the cloud. Then from the cloud came a voice that said, “This is my Son, my Chosen; listen to him!” When the voice had spoken, Jesus was found alone. And they kept silent and in those days told no one any of the things they had seen.
9:29 the appearance of his face was transformed. Lit., “the appearance of his face became different” (heteros [2087, 2283]). Luke does not use the Gr. word “transfigure” (metemorphōthē [3339/A, 3565]), the term employed in Matt 17:2 and Mark 9:2. It seems Luke deliberately steered clear of a term that had negative associations in the pagan world, where apotheosis (the elevation of humans to divine status) was known. “Luke was aware of the danger of confusing Jesus with some polytheistic pagan notions (compare Acts 14:11 [NIV], where Paul and Barnabas are acclaimed in Lystra as ‘the gods’ who ‘have come down to us in human form’). Jesus is not to be identified in Luke’s mind with one of the Hellenistic deities. He is the unique bearer of the divine glory (9:32; cf. 2 Cor 4:7),” and no comparison with any Hellenistic figure is appropriate or illuminating (Hurst and Wright 1987:74). For literature on the Transfiguration, see DJG 834–841; NIDNTT 3.861–865; Trites 1987a. ( Cornerstone Commentary )
Luke in contrast to his other gospel counterparts wants us to know that “ Jesus is the Unique Bearer Of The Divine Glory. “ Not like the Hellenistic or pagan gods in contrast.
Reflecting His Glory
Blaise Pascal, the brilliant 17th-century intellectual, made significant contributions in the fields of science and mathematics. He established the groundwork for the development of mechanical calculators and modern hydraulic operations.
As a young man, Pascal had a profound encounter with Jesus Christ. This life-changing experience motivated him to refocus his study from science and math to theology.
Pascal wrote a remarkable prayer that can help each believer in facing the tasks of life. He prayed: “Lord, help me to do great things as though they were little, since I do them with Your power; and little things as though they were great, since I do them in Your name.”