Second Sunday of Lent, Class I


The Gospel this Sunday is Matthew 17: 1-17, the Transfiguration of Our Lord:

"And after six days Jesus took with him Peter and James and John his brother, and led them up a high mountain apart. And he was transfigured before them, and his face shone like the sun, and his garments became white as light. And behold, there appeared to them Moses and Eli'jah, talking with him. And Peter said to Jesus, "Lord, it is well that we are here; if you wish, I will make three booths here, one for you and one for Moses and one for Eli'jah." He was still speaking, when lo, a bright cloud overshadowed them, and a voice from the cloud said, "This is my beloved Son, with whom I am well pleased; listen to him." When the disciples heard this, they fell on their faces, and were filled with awe. But Jesus came and touched them, saying, "Rise, and have no fear." And when they lifted up their eyes, they saw no one but Jesus only. And as they were coming down the mountain, Jesus commanded them, "Tell no one the vision, until the Son of man is raised from the dead."

Why this text for the second Sunday of Lent?

You can find a very interesting discussion of why it was Moses and Elijah who appeared and not other Old Testament figures, as well as links to discussions of other aspects of the Transfiguration, over at New Theological Movement.

The conventional explanation of the text is that the Transfiguration was intended to strengthen the apostles (and thus us) to help them remember Our Lord's divinity as they went through the dark times to come.  The two figures symbolise the law and the prophets that he both fulfills and transforms. 

But Reginaldus points out that the figures of Moses and Elijah also serve a darker function, foreshadowing the horror of the cross.  Well worth a read.

1 comment:

Reginaldus said...

Kate,
Thanks for linking to the article over at NTM.
Moreover, thank you for keeping up this blog -- I myself pray the Breviary from '62, but I wish I could pray the Monastic Breviary! (however, as Diocesan, I am limited)
In any case, I have very much enjoyed reading your little reflections on the Office for each day.

Also, blessings to you as you prepare for the feast of Father Benedict! +