Into the World
I’ve long been fascinated with those moments in Jesus’ life when the veil of His human flesh gave way to a vision of His refulgent glory as the Son of God. What must it have been like to be one of His disciples and to know Him as a man but then to see with clarity His deity in an encounter of dazzling light? The most spectacular of these encounters was His transfiguration, that moment when His transcendent radiance paralyzed Peter, James, and John with awe (Matt. 17:1–13). All they wanted at that moment was to bask in Jesus’ glory forever—and so that is what they asked for.
It has always struck me that Jesus said no to that request. Instead, Jesus came down from the Mount of Transfiguration with His disciples and went back into the world. Jesus’ going back into the world has served as a model for the church’s ministry until the present day. When Christ calls people into His kingdom, He doesn’t pull them out of the world forever. He sends them back out with the gospel.