Jesus Shining Face
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Jesus Shining Face
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Moses face ShinesWhen God works through Christian people, their outward appearances are often changed into something approaching Jesus shining face at the Transfiguration. Technically, Jesus is believed to have been metamorphosed when he was transfigured, as in the metamorphosis of a caterpillar into a butterfly. "Metamorphosis is a biological process by which an animal physically develops after birth or hatching, involving a conspicuous and relatively abrupt change in the animal's body structure through cell growth and differentiation. Metamorphosis is iodothyronine-induced and an ancestral feature of all chordates." You don't need to scientifically understand this process which was set in place at Creation to understand Jesus Transfiguration. The word "metamorphosis" derives from the Greek, "transformation" or "transforming", and is composed of two words, "meta" meaning "after" and "morphe" meaning "form". A human metamorphosis is entirely and completely an act of God except maybe in science fiction movies!

Moses Experience

Jesus Glowing FaceIn the Old Testament, Moses met God on Mount Sinai and his face also shone similarly. His face was transformed because he had been with the Lord God Almighty. Exodus 34.29 reads, "When Moses came down from Mount Sinai with the two tablets of the Testimony in his hands, he was not aware that his face was radiant because he had spoken with Yahweh." The people were so astonished at his glowing appearance that "they were afraid to come near him." Because of this, Moses had to wear a veil to conceal his face! Like Moses, Jesus' face was lit up at the Transfiguration. Matthew 17.2 records, "There he (Jesus) was transfigured before them. Jesus' face shone like the sun, and his clothes became as white as the light." Jesus was ablaze with the godliness of the Lord God Almighty. Saint Stephen also radiated God's glory before his martyrdom when his face was seen to be glowing. Acts 6.15 explains, "And all who sat in the council looked intently at him, and they saw that his (Stephen's) face was like the face of an angel." A Christian's countenance should and often does reflect God's glory. Though we tend to dismiss this aspect of our Christian faith, we sometimes instinctively recognize other Christians by their appearance. The Apostle Paul confirmed this truth and wrote in 2 Corinthians 3.18, "But we all, with open face beholding as in a glass the glory of the Lord, are changed into the same image from glory to glory, even as by the Spirit of the Lord." The subtle change in appearance is the work of the indwelling Holy Spirit. In the Acts of the Apostles, some Christians' glowing faces were described as being so pronounced that some people assumed that they had been drinking excessively even in the morning! In Acts 2.15 the disciples corrected them, "These people are not drunk, as you suppose. It's only nine in the morning!"

The Divine Optician

eyesThe divine optician Jesus Christ opens eyes and lets us view God's world from his perspective. As members of the Mystical Body of Christ grow into holiness, God opened their eyes and they began to view God's world differently. They saw things in a new light. This same thing happened to two disciples who met Jesus Christ after the resurrection as they hurried along the road to Emmaus. Though they knew Jesus well, they failed to recognize him as they walked and talked. Suddenly, as Jesus broke bread in their home, he opened their eyes. Then in Luke 24.37, we read, "they were startled and frightened, thinking they saw a ghost."

Growing into Holiness

StressWhen Jesus Christ opens our eyes he gives us a renewed vision for our neighbors who may not know him. Christ transforms our view of the growing numbers of seniors, the young professional Millennials and the ethnic groups speaking their languages in our midst. Christ directs us to the new poor and their children in our big cities. As we minister to others, we begin to understand ourselves. We realize our impoverished nature and begin to comprehend our wonderful status in God's sight as his children. Christ awakens us to our frailty and then to God's power beginning to work in us.

Acknowledge Jesus Christ

Jesus' Face in Stained GlassTo acknowledge Jesus Christ and believe in him as in the earliest Christian creeds brings spiritual insights from the Lord himself. Saying, "Jesus is Lord" is the very earliest Christian creed. Also and perhaps, more importantly, it is a prerequisite to knowing God's forgiveness and acceptance. Those people who acknowledge Jesus Christ are promised support and acceptance when they speak about their faith. "I tell you," said Jesus in Luke 12.8, "whoever publicly acknowledges me before others, the Son of Man will also acknowledge before the angels of God." Saint Paul added in Philippians 2.11, "at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, in heaven and on earth and under the earth, and every tongue will acknowledge that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father."

Jesus is Lord

Stone in wall cemented TogetherIn the Early Church, the act of confessing Jesus Christ was life-threatening. This was particularly true from Jesus' resurrection through to Emperor Constantine's (272-337 AD) Edict in 313 AD which allowed all religions to co-exist in the Empire. Confessing Jesus Christ cemented a person's relationship to the Son of God and also established that person's place in the Christian community. The Apostle John also emphasizes in 1 John 4.15, "If anyone acknowledges that Jesus is the Son of God, God lives in them and they live in God."

Fragrant Knowledge of Him

Three FragrancesWe have often felt guilty or we were too embarrassed or fearful to share our faith. In avoiding this mental conflict, our joy and purpose drained away. We mistakenly imagined that we needed to be eloquent and theologically precise, but Jesus wanted us only to tell simply what we have personally experienced of him. Despite our frailty, Paul the Apostle said in 2 Corinthians 2.14 that Jesus, "uses us to spread the aroma of the knowledge of him everywhere." How wonderful!

Lord Jesus Face

HeartThe Lord Jesus' face like Moses' face was radiant and reflected his glory because he had spoken with God the Father. After Jesus' Ascension, the disciples changed from being dejected to becoming an enthusiastic confident company. What was on their faces came from their hearts and they were changed by the Lord Jesus' face. Luke 24.52-53 explained, "Then they worshipped him and returned to Jerusalem with great joy. And they stayed continually at the temple, praising God."

Unveiled Faces

Woman's Veiled FaceMany of today's congregations are too anxious to rush out of church and home for lunch to have time to appreciate the Lord Jesus face. The early Christian's greatest joy was to hang around the Temple and praise God. Happy praise in God's presence was their bread and butter. It mysteriously gave them the Lord Jesus' face. It should be ours too. Paul confirmed this fact in 2 Corinthians 3.18, "And we, who with unveiled faces all reflect the Lord's glory, are being transformed into his likeness with ever-increasing glory, which comes from the Lord, who is the Spirit." Our faces will be changed like Jesus Christ's Face.✞

Glow on your Face

Lord Jesus' FaceAs we mature and change as Christians Jesus works inwardly and invisibly in our inner beings and gives us the Lord Jesus' face. He will open your eyes, enlarge your mind, speak through our mouths, put a glow on our faces and set your hearts on fire with love for him.

Jesus Christ Mind

The MindHaving Jesus Christ's mind opens up a person to see things differently. Genuine Christianity and a Christian mindset demand a Scriptural guide. Open eyes in Christians produce open minds which by practice and perseverance became "Jesus Christ mind" or the "Jesus mindset." This is clearly illustrated in the Gospels when a group of fishermen meets Jesus after the resurrection in Luke 24.45. Jesus eats fish with them as proof that he is alive. The passage reads, "Then he opened their minds so they could understand the Scriptures." Jesus opens the disciples' minds to understand spiritual truths in the Word of God or the Scriptures. At that time, the Scriptures" meant the "Old Testament" but now means the Whole Bible including the stories of Jesus (Gospels), the Epistles (letters) and the rest of the New Testament. Some people in error proclaim that the Scriptures do not include many of the passages in the Old Testament, and other verses and chapters which do not support their particular viewpoint. Some even astoundingly reduce the Scriptures to the actual spoken words of Jesus though even here they have problems!

Not Brainwashed

BrainSome people mock Christians saying that they are brainwashed, indoctrinated or induced to conform to a set of beliefs. They say that any clear-thinking person would reject Christianity and the belief in a God outright. Far from being closed-minded or blinkered, genuine Christianity demands that we open our minds, to think through and mentally explore our faith with the mind of Jesus Christ. The Apostle Paul had a radical internal change from persecuting Christians to being their chief spokesperson. He wrote in 1 Corinthians 2.16, "but we have the mind of Christ." This did not mean in the sense of being brainwashed, or of becoming robot-like in our decision-making but instead having our minds truly opened to the truth and freed up by Jesus Christ himself who said in John 14.6, "I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me."

If Necessary Use Words

PotterNot only do we need Jesus' mind, but we also need his words too. Ruth E. Johnson wrote, "When the potter remade my marred vessel, he put a spout on it." When we are remade with Jesus' mind, God fills us to overflowing and we want to share our faith with others. Jesus said in Luke 24.48, "you are witnesses of these things." A witness tells only of what he or she has heard, seen or experienced. In sharing our faith, we also take possession of it. Saint Paul wrote in Romans 10.9, "if you confess with your mouth, 'Jesus is Lord,' and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved." Our minds need to be re-booted by the "Divine Programmer."✞

"Jesus Shining Face"
by Ron Meacock © 2019

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