The transfiguration of Jesus is theophany which is the revelation of God to us. The true identity of Jesus is revealed to His disciples. He is the radiance of God himself and the brightness of the Father’s glory. Transfiguration is the preview of His resurrection beyond physical appearance. It comes from the Greek word, metamorphoo, which is metamorphosis in English. It is the change that occurs when a caterpillar becomes a butterfly.
His face shone like the sun and his clothes became white as light (Matthew 17:2). Transfiguration is proclamation of immortality, the victory over death. It is the reassurance and encouragement for His disciples because He openly predicted to them about His passion and death. Christ’s glory is totally manifested on the Cross. It points also to our baptism when we receive the white garment, a sign of our participation in the life of Christ. Our baptism is the first regeneration, our rebirth to new life. Transfiguration is the second regeneration which is the foretaste of Christ’s glorious coming when He will change our lowly bodies to be like His glorious body. We are called to listen to Jesus because He is the beloved Son of God, the Wisdom of the Father and the way of eternal insight. To listen to Him is to hear what He says, to accept what He says, to make our own what He says and to be fully identified with what He says. It is to make the choices, vision and values of Jesus our own. Like Mary she treasures everything in her heart. That is why she is a doer of the Word. Peter, James and John witnessed the transfiguration of Jesus.
Peter denied Him three times. But after His resurrection He asked Peter three times, ‘Do you love me?’ (John 21: 15). Peter replied, “Yes, Lord, you know that I love you” (John 21: 16). He loves Jesus the most. John is the beloved disciple. James is the first apostle who died a martyr’s death. All of them love Him the most. To have access to Christ’s glory is to fall in love with Him. And to love the way He loves.