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Luke 9:28 Commentary - Expository Notes with Practical Observations on the New Testament

Here we have recorded the history of our holy Saviour's transfiguration; when he laid, as it were the garments of our frail humanity aside for a little season; and put on the robes of his divine glory to demonstrate and testify the truth of his divinity; for his divine glory was an evidence of his divine nature, and also an emblem of that glory which he and his disciples, and all his faithful servants and followers, shall enjoy together in heaven.

Observe, 1. The design of our Saviour in this his transfiguration, namely, to confirm his disciples' faith in the truth of his divine nature: he was therefore pleased to suffer the rays of his divinity to dart forth before their eyes, so far as they were able to bear it; his face shined with a pleasing brightness, and his raiment with such a glorious lustre, as did at once both delight and dazzle the eyes of his disciples.

Observe, 2. The choice which our Saviour makes of the witnesses of his transfiguration: his three disciples, Peter, James, and John. But why disciples? Why three disciples, and why these three?

1. Why disciples? Because his transfiguration was a type of heaven: Christ vouchsafes therefore the earnest and first fruits of that glory only to saints upon earth, on whom he intended to bestow the full crop in due time.

2. Why three disciples? Because these were sufficient to witness the truth of this miracle. Judas was unworthy of this favor, yet, lest he should murmur or be discontented, others are left out as well as he.

3. But why these three rather than others?

Probably 1. Because these three were more eminent for great zeal and love towards Christ: now the most eminent manifestations of glory are made to those that are most excelling in grace.

2. Because these three disciples were to be witnesses of Christ's agony and passion, to prepare them for which, they are here made witnesses of his transfiguration. This glorious vision upon Mount Tabor fitted them to abide the terror of Mount Calvary.

Observe 3. The glorious attendants upon our Saviuor at his transfiguration: they were two; those two men, Moses and Elias. This being but a glimpse of heaven's glory, and not a full manifestation of it, only two of the glorified saints attended it, and these two attendants are not two angels, but two men; because men were more nearly concerned than angels in what was done. But why Moses and Elias, rather than any other men?

1. Because Moses was the giver of the law, and Elias the chief of the prophets; now both these attending upon Christ, did show the consent of the law and the prophets with Christ, and their accomplishment and fulfilling in him.

2. Because these two men were the most laborious servants of Christ: both adventured their lives in God's cause, and therefore were highly honored by him; for those that honor him he will honor.

Observe, 4. The carriage and behavior of the disciples upon this great occasion:

1. They supplicate Jesus: they do not pray to Moses or Elias, but to Christ: Master, it is good being here.

O what a ravishing comfort and satisfaction is the communion and fellowship of the saints! But the presence of Christ amongst them, renders their joys transporting.

2. They proffer their service to further the continuance of what they did enjoy: Let us make three tabernacles; saints will stick at no cost or pains for the enjoyment of Christ's presence and his people's company.

Learn hence, 1. That a glimpse of heaven's glory is sufficient to raise a soul into ecstacy and to make it out of love with worldly company.

2. That we are apt to desire more of heaven upon earth than God will allow us; we would have the heavenly glory come down to us, but are not willing by death to go up to that.

Observe, 5. How a cloud was put before the disciples' eyes, when the divine glory was manifested to them, partly to allay the lustre and resplendency of that glory which they were swallowed up with: the glory of heaven is insupportable in this imperfect state, we cannot bear it unveiled; and partly did this cloud come to hinder their looking and prying farther into this glory. We must be content to behold God through a cloud darkly here: before long we shall see him face to face.

Observe, 6. The testimony given out of the cloud by God the Father, concerning Jesus Christ his Son: This is my beloved Son, hear him.

Where note, 1. The dignity of his person; he is my Son, for nature coessential, and for duration co-eternal with his Father.

2. The endearedness of his relation; He is my beloved Son, because of his conformity to me, and compliance with me: likeness is the cause of love, and an union or harmony of wills causes a mutual endearing of affection.

3. The authority of his doctrine; Hear ye him; "not Moses and Elias, who were servants, but Christ my Son, whom I have authorized and appointed to be the great prophet and teacher of my church; therefore adore him as my Son, and believe in him as your Saviour, and hear him as your lawgiver." The obedient ear honors Christ more than either the gazing eye, the adoring knee, or the applauding tongue.

Consult other comments:

Luke 9:28 - Abbott's Illustrated New Testament

Luke 9:28 - The Greek Testament

Luke 9:28 - Albert Barnes' Notes on the Bible

Luke 9:28 - Joseph Benson’s Commentary on the Old and New Testaments

Luke 9:28 - Expository Notes with Practical Observations on the New Testament

Luke 9:28 - The Cambridge Bible for Schools and Colleges

Luke 9:28 - B.H. Carroll's An Interpretation of the English Bible

Luke 9:28 - Adam Clarke's Commentary and Critical Notes on the Bible

Luke 9:28 - Commentary on the Holy Bible by Thomas Coke

Luke 9:28 - College Press Bible Study Textbook Series

Luke 9:28 - Companion Bible Notes, Appendices and Graphics

Luke 9:28 - Expository Notes of Dr. Constable (Old and New Testaments)

Luke 9:28 - Expositors Bible Commentary

Luke 9:28 - Ellicott's Commentary for English Readers (Old and New Testaments)

Luke 9:28 - Everett's Study Notes on the Holy Scriptures

Luke 9:28 - The Expositor’s Greek Testament by Robertson

Luke 9:28 - F.B. Meyer's Through the Bible Commentary

Luke 9:28 - Discovering Christ In Selected Books of the Bible

Luke 9:28 - Garner-Howes Baptist Commentary

Luke 9:28 - McGarvey and Pendleton Commentaries (New Testament)

Luke 9:28 - Geneva Bible Notes

Luke 9:28 - John Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible

Luke 9:28 - Gnomon of the New Testament

Luke 9:28 - William Godbey's Commentary on the New Testament

Luke 9:28 - Godet Commentary (Luke, John, Romans and 1 Corinthians)

Luke 9:28 - Henry Alford's Greek Testament

Luke 9:28 - Hawker's Poor Man's Commentary (Old and New Testaments)

Luke 9:28 - Matthew Henry's Whole Bible Commentary

Luke 9:28 - Biblical Illustrator Edited by Joseph S. Exell

Luke 9:28 - Jamieson, Fausset and Brown's Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible

Luke 9:28 - The Popular Commentary on the Bible by Kretzmann

Luke 9:28 - A Commentary on the Holy Scriptures, Critical, Doctrinal, and Homiletical by Lange

Luke 9:28 - Heinrich August Wilhelm Meyer's New Testament Commentary

Luke 9:28 - Peake's Commentary on the Bible

Luke 9:28 - Commentary Series on the Bible by Peter Pett

Luke 9:28 - English Annotations on the Holy Bible by Matthew Poole

Luke 9:28 - The Preacher's Complete Homiletical Commentary Edited by Joseph S. Exell

Luke 9:28 - Old and New Testaments Restoration Commentary

Luke 9:28 - Robertson's Word Pictures in the New Testament

Luke 9:28 - Ryle's Expository Thoughts on the Gospels

Luke 9:28 - A Popular Commentary on the New Testament

Luke 9:28 - Scofield Reference Bible Notes

Luke 9:28 - John Trapp's Complete Commentary (Old and New Testaments)

Luke 9:28 - The Treasury of Scripture Knowledge

Luke 9:28 - You Can Understand the Bible: Study Guide Commentary Series by Bob Utley

Luke 9:28 - Vincent's Word Studies in the New Testament

Luke 9:28 - Whedon's Commentary on the Old and New Testaments

Luke 9:28 - Combined Bible Commentary

Expository Notes with Practical Observations on the New Testament