2 Peter 1:10-19; Matthew 17:1-9

In the Name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit, Amen. Christ is in our midst! He is and shall be!

Today we celebrate a great Feast of our Lord, the Feast of the Uncreated Light, the Feast of the Transfiguration of our Jesus. Today our Lord clearly reveals His divinity to the Apostles Peter, James, and John, and this revelation comes in the form of an indescribable light surrounding Him on the summit of Mt Tabor. It’s not uncommon for our Lord to reveal Himself as light both in the Scriptures and in the lives of the Saints – we can think immediately of Abraham, Moses, Paul, St. Seraphim of Sarov, and so many others. When human kind comes into direct contact with divinity, it seems that Light is the only way we have to speak about our experience.

The Apostles experience the glory of the Godman today on Mt Tabor – this glory identified as a bright cloud in this morning’s reading. When we read of these experiences, and of so many Elders and theologians today writing about the Uncreated Light, it can be a confusing and daunting thing to try and comprehend and to even think about ourselves possibly experiencing.

So this morning I’d like to read a small excerpt that brings this notion of God as light into the everyday for us.

Excerpt from A Night in the Desert of the Holy Mountain by Metropolitan HIEROTHEOS of Nafpaktos (pp 130-131)
[Speaking about this (God as light)] “we can say that there is spiritual light and light that man sees with his physical eyes, after they have been transformed and strengthened to see it. Spiritual light is the commandments, and he who keeps them receives it. ‘Thy word is a lamp unto my feet and a light unto my path.’ The commandments of Christ are ‘words of eternal life’ and not moralistic external precepts. Virtues, as well, which are conceived in our effort to carry out the commandments of Christ, are torches. Faith is light as well as hope and love. God is the true light and ‘the light of the world’ (John 8:12)…’God is love,’ which is why we say that love is the brightest light of all the virtues. Repentance, too, is light, which shines on the soul of man and guides him to the pool of the second baptism, where the eyes are cleansed from spiritual cataracts. All Christians who fight the good fight enjoy this light…”

We all have the opportunity to participate in the Light of Mount Tabor, it’s not a thing meant to be foreign to us – we can all have the mercy and love of God flood over us, and to live in this light. “The Kingdom of God is within you,” our Lord says, and truly we can experience this through the Light of God coming to dwell in us. In fact, every revelation of Christ is not done simply to establish Him as Truth, but also acts as an invitation for us to also experience these same revelations. Christ is present in His words, in His commandments, in the Virtues, in the Sacraments, and as we align ourselves with these things of Christ we also align ourselves with His life, we become like Him, and He makes His abode in us.

Glory to our God for revealing Himself as He truly is to His Apostles so that they might believe and also hand the Truth on to us, and glory to Him for continuing to reveal Himself to His beloved, for our strengthening and salvation.

Glory to the Transfigured Lord! Glory forever!