Jesus took Peter, James, and John and led them up a high mountain apart by themselves. And he was transfigured before them, and his clothes became dazzling white, such as no fuller on earth could bleach them. Then Elijah appeared to them along with Moses, and they were conversing with Jesus. Then Peter said to Jesus in reply, “Rabbi, it is good that we are here! Let us make three tents: one for you, one for Moses, and one for Elijah.” He hardly knew what to say, they were so terrified. Then a cloud came, casting a shadow over them; then from the cloud came a voice, “This is my beloved Son. Listen to him.” Suddenly, looking around, the disciples no longer saw anyone but Jesus alone with them.
As they were coming down from the mountain, he charged them not to relate what they had seen to anyone, except when the Son of Man had risen from the dead. So they kept the matter to themselves, questioning what rising from the dead meant. Then they asked him, “Why do the scribes say that Elijah must come first?” He told them, “Elijah will indeed come first and restore all things, yet how is it written regarding the Son of Man that he must suffer greatly and be treated with contempt? But I tell you that Elijah has come and they did to him whatever they pleased, as it is written of him.”
The Gospel helps us to understand the danger of not listening to the Lord. If we do not pay attention to everything the Lord tells us, by mistake we will repeat the same stupidity, to the extreme of killing the Elijahs, the envoys of the Father.
It is good to live a happy moment, to have a very rich meeting, to be with the important people. However, before God, it is more important to put into practice all that we have heard, to be witnesses of a good moment, and to know how to participate in the life of the saints in a concrete way. There we will be able to welcome the Lord's passion as our own.
Action of the day: Listen.
“He charged them not to relate what they had seen to anyone”
Fr. Xavier ROMERO i Galdeano
(Cervera, Lleida, Spain)
Today, the Transfiguration in Mark's Gospel presents us an already solved enigma. Saint Mark's evangelic texts are full of messianic secrets, of isolated moments where Jesus forbids telling no one what He might have done. Today, and right here, we have a “sample”. When Jesus “he charged them not to relate what they had seen to anyone, except when the Son of Man had risen from the dead” (Mk 9:9).
But, what, does this Messianic Secret consist of? The messianic secret consists in lifting the veil a little to slightly reveal what is hidden below; for the whole mystery will only be totally uncovered, in the light of his Paschal Mystery, when Jesus' last days are over. We can see it clearly in this Gospel: Transfiguration is just a moment, a taste of glory, to give the apostles the possibility to decipher the meaning of that intimate moment.
Jesus had announced his disciples the imminent moment of His Passion, but upon seeing them so perturbed because of his tragic final, He explains with words and facts how his last days would be: days of passion and death, but days that will be over with his resurrection. Here is the enigma unraveled. Saint Thomas Aquinas says: “To properly walk one's way it takes one to know first, somehow, the target one is aiming at.”
Our Christian lives have also an aim uncovered by our Lord Jesus Christ: to enjoy God's unfailing love forever and ever. But this target will not be lacking in moments of sacrifice and crucial pains. However, we have to remember the live message of today's Gospel: in this apparent blind alley which, so often, seems to be our life, because of our fidelity to God, and while spending our life immerse and living in the spirit of the Beatitudes, the tragic ending will be cracked to give way to our enjoying God eternally.