Chrlsp, have you considered Jesse's proposal for the transfiguration, that it was a vision, something they saw
but which wasn't fully real? In my view, that makes a lot of sense, and also lines up with what Jesus said to Peter, James and John afterwards:
And as they came down from the mountain, Jesus charged them, saying, Tell the vision to no man, until the Son of man be risen again from the dead. (Matt 17:9)
Remember also that in every gospel record of the transfiguration, it occurs just after Jesus has said that some of those standing by him would not taste of death till they had seen
the kingdom of God come with power. (That must be referring to a vision of the kingdom and not the kingdom itself, because Jesus' disciples certainly won't taste of death after
the kingdom comes, they will be raised from the dead when it comes, never to die again.)
When the kingdom does come, all the prophets (including Moses and Elijah) will be there, openly seen
, with Abraham, Isaac and Jacob in the kingdom. Speaking to his enemies, Jesus said:
There shall be weeping and gnashing of teeth, when ye shall see Abraham, and Isaac, and Jacob, and all the prophets, in the kingdom of God, and you yourselves thrust out. (Luke 13:28)
For Peter, James and John to see
Moses and Elijah with Jesus, all glorious, on the mountain, was a foretaste, a preview in part, of what will occur in the future when Jesus returns and establishes the kingdom of God. Peter in his second letter confirms this understanding:
For we have not followed cunningly devised fables, when we made known unto you the power and coming of our Lord Jesus Christ, but were eyewitnesses of his majesty.
For he received from God the Father honour and glory, when there came such a voice to him from the excellent glory, This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased.
And this voice which came from heaven we heard, when we were with him in the holy mount.
(2 Pet 1:16-18)
And it's not the only time that faithful men have seen
Christ's glory, before he was raised from the dead. John tells us that the prophet Isaiah, who lived around 700 years before Christ, saw
But though he had done so many miracles before them, yet they believed not on him:
That the saying of Esaias the prophet might be fulfilled, which he spake, Lord, who hath believed our report? and to whom hath the arm of the Lord been revealed?
Therefore they could not believe, because that Esaias said again,
He hath blinded their eyes, and hardened their heart; that they should not see with their eyes, nor understand with their heart, and be converted, and I should heal them.
These things said Esaias, when he saw his glory, and spake of him.
And of necessity, since Jesus had not yet been born, what Isaiah saw
a vision, it cannot have been real then and there. We can read of it in Isaiah 6:1-10.
Edited by Mark Taunton, 02 September 2011 - 07:21 AM.