Sermons

Transfiguration (Mt 17:1–9)

Immanuel Lutheran Church—Bremen, KS || AUDIO
Bethlehem Lutheran Church— Bremen, KS || AUDIO

Jesus commanded them, “Tell no one the vision until the Son of Man is raised from the dead.”
Jesus touching them said, “Rise and don’t be afraid.”
“This is My beloved Son; with Him I’m well pleased. Listen to Him.”

INI + AMEN.

((3.)) Jesus commanded them, “Tell no one the vision until the Son of Man is raised from the dead.”

He did rise from the dead. That’s what Transfiguration’s really all about. Jesus doesn’t want to be known for Sinai type glory or mountain of transfiguration glory. He doesn’t want to be known as the big, powerful, almighty God. (He is those things, of course. He’s one with the Father, after all.) No, He wants to be known for His Calvary glory, His cross and death glory, but also His risen from the dead glory. It’s why He says don’t tell anyone until after “the Son of Man is raised from the dead.” It’s why the angel says to the women, “You seek Jesus who was crucified. He’s risen. He’s not here.”

We’re getting a preview of that today—80 days or so ahead of time. (It’s about 80 days until Easter Sunday.) But before He heads up Mt. Calvary, before He’s buried and raised on the mountain Jerusalem’s built on, Jesus heads up this “very tall mountain.” There He shines in glory. There a preview of what Jesus is all about: not just death, but resurrection, too—His FOR YOU.

Jesus is raised from the dead, and so we can rejoice today when looking at the movie-trailer version: the mountain of transfiguration.

((2.)) Jesus touching them said, “Rise and don’t be afraid.”

We live lives of fear. We’re afraid of so many things. Maybe we’re afraid of what the world’s coming to. Maybe we’re afraid of God and judgment because of our sinfulness like the disciples were. And each of us should consider how we don’t “fear, love, and trust in God above all things” when it comes to how we act in our day to day lives, but there is something we’re all afraid of: dying and death.

We’re afraid of death. Our heart stops, then what? Blackness. Nothingness. Death. But it’s not just that split second we worry about, that we’re—pun intended—scared to death of. We’re also afraid—maybe more so—about what happens before that. We’re afraid of dying. What if I get cancer? What if it’s Alzheimer’s? What if I linger? What if there’s pain? The list goes on and on.

He says to you, “Don’t be afraid.” Someday, the Last Day, He’ll tell you, “Rise!” Then no more fear. No more death. Not for you. Not ever. Why? Jesus has died and risen. He did it for you. He makes it yours. His death is your death. His resurrection is your resurrection. You will live forever. You will see Him face to face. You’ll be in your Father’s presence forever.

You will be raised from the dead. Jesus is raised, and His resurrection is yours. “Don’t be afraid.”

((1.)) “This is My beloved Son; with Him I’m well pleased. Listen to Him.”

Beloved Son of the Father: baptized for sinners, suffered for sinners, died for sinners, raised for sinners. The Father’s pleased with Jesus not just because He’s His eternal Son, but because Jesus does all that He does not for glory’s sake but for your sake—to save you from the dead.

We should listen to what He says. He’s risen from the dead, after all. Probably good to listen to someone who does that. We listen not only because He says, “Rise and have no fear.” His resurrection is your resurrection, and listening to Him is exactly how He makes His resurrection your resurrection.

“Listen to Him.” “I baptize you into the Name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit.” “Whoever believes and His baptized will be saved.”

“Listen to Him.” “I forgive you all your sins.” “If you forgive anyone His sins, they are forgiven.”

“Listen to Him.” “This is My Body and Blood, given and shed for you, for the forgiveness of sins.” “Whoever eats My flesh and drinks My blood has eternal life, and I will resurrect Him on the Last Day.”

“Listen to Him.” Listening to Him is resurrection, eternal life, and eternal peace.

((Conclusion.))

The Son of Man is raised from the dead. He died for you. Rose for you. We get a preview of that today.

We don’t need to be afraid of death. He will raise us from the dead “to live before Him in righteousness and purity forever.” His resurrection didn’t just happen. His resurrection is yours. He makes it yours, and so we’re never afraid. Not of the world, not of death or even dying. Not anything. Because Jesus isn’t just about death. He’s about resurrection, too—His FOR YOU.

It is yours. “Listen to Him.” That’s how He makes it yours. Over your forehead. Into your ears. Into your mouth. We listen to Him not just cause it’s a good idea, not just cause we’re told to, but because in His Word is resurrection, eternal life, and eternal peace.

LISTEN, JESUS’ RESURRECTION IS YOURS!

It has to be. He not only did it. He makes it yours. “Listen to Him.” “I baptize you.” You are baptized! “Listen to Him.” “I forgive you.” You are forgiven. “Listen to Him.” “My Body and Blood for you; I will resurrect you.” You are bodied and blooded. You will be resurrected. One day He’ll do it. One day, He’ll touch your grave and say, “Rise.” You don’t need to be afraid. LISTEN, JESUS’ RESURRECTION IS YOURS! He says so.

INI + AMEN.

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Sermons

Transfiguration of Our Lord (Mt 17:1–9)

Immanuel Lutheran Church—Bremen, KS || AUDIO
Bethlehem Lutheran Church—Bremen, KS || AUDIO

INI + AMEN.

On the sixth day after Jesus talked about His death, He went up a mountain like many other times, but this time He didn’t travel alone. There were always people, crowds, mobs pressing in, just trying to get a glimpse, a snippet, a brush of Him or His garments. On this sixth day, no crowds were with Him, just Peter, James, and John. Continue reading

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Sermons

Transfiguration (Mt 17:1–9)

February 5, 2017
Bethlehem Lutheran Church—Bremen, KS || AUDIO
Immanuel Lutheran Church—Bremen, KS || AUDIO

INI + AMEN.

Transfiguration’s a big deal, but not in a way you might think. That’s our problem. We get caught up in glory clouds, in bright shining faces, in power, in thunderous voices from heaven. That’s Old Adam, though. Our flesh likes that sort of thing. We’re naturally attracted to power. It’s what’s Old Adam understands. At our core, it’s pretty much the one thing we understand naturally.

It’s what we want. We want power. We tend to think: the world would just be perfect if I were running it. The only thing that keeps our ambitions in check is someone with more smarts, more money, more popularity, more connections, or whatever. But it’s all power.

So we take that understanding of power, and we apply that to JESUS and God. Transfiguration seems to play right into that, but the glory of the Transfiguration isn’t the point. JESUS knows that. That’s what He says! “Tell no one the vision, until the Son of Man is raised from the dead.” If that sort glory were the point, He wouldn’t have said, “Don’t tell anyone.” He wouldn’t’ve cared if they said anything. Why does JESUS say this? He says it because

JESUS’ TRUE GLORY IS HIS CROSS AND EMPTY TOMB. Continue reading

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Sermons

Transfiguration (Lk 9:28–36)

February 7, 2016
Immanuel Lutheran Church—Bremen, KS || AUDIO
Bethlehem Lutheran Church—Bremen, KS || AUDIO

INI + AMEN.

Jesus is God hidden in plain sight. Now, that might sound like an odd thing to say on the day we remember when our Lord Jesus was transfigured, but actually this is made even more clear by His Transfiguration. It’s like this: Jesus just looked like a normal guy before this. Sure, He did miracles like healing the sick, raising the dead. That’s not that special. Prophets did that. After His Transfiguration, Jesus looked like a normal guy again. So normal, in fact, He died! That’s pretty run of the mill. Ah, but the Transfiguration, Jesus’ Transfiguration lets you peek behind the curtain. Now “Peter, John, and James”—you too!—get to see that Jesus is who He really says He is. Well, you really know that Easter Sunday, but here’s a little foreshadowing and preview for Easter. But it’s not really about the glory. He hides it. His clothing flashes lightning white. He shines in glory, and then…nothing. Not until His resurrection does He do things never seen before: passing through doors, disappearing, ascending into heaven, appearing in glory to Paul. Anyway, Jesus being transfigured contrasts, in a very vivid way, that Jesus actually hides His glory. He hides it for you.

JESUS HIDES HIS GLORY TO SAVE YOU. Continue reading

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