WHY DID GOD SPEAK?
Back to the mountain. Our heavenly Father spoke emphatically. But why did He speak at all? Here's what Matthew said:
1 Now after six days Jesus took Peter, James, and John his brother, led them up on a high mountain by themselves;
2 and He was transfigured before them. His face shone like the sun, and His clothes became as white as the light.
3 And behold, Moses and Elijah appeared to them, talking with Him.
4 Then Peter answered and said to Jesus, “Lord, it is good for us to be here; if You wish, let us make here three tabernacles: one for You, one for Moses, and one for Elijah.”
5 While he was still speaking, behold, a bright cloud overshadowed them; and suddenly a voice came out of the cloud, saying, “This is My beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased. Hear Him!”
6 And when the disciples heard it, they fell on their faces and were greatly afraid.
7 But Jesus came and touched them and said, “Arise, and do not be afraid.”
8 When they had lifted up their eyes, they saw no one but Jesus only (Matthew 17 NKJV).
Luke (9'33) points out that Peter spoke, "Not knowing what he said" when he blurted this out:
"Lord, it is good for us to be here; If you wish, let us make here three tabernacles: one for You, one for Moses, and one for Elijah”.
At this point God interrupted:
"While he was still speaking, behold, a bright cloud overshadowed them; and suddenly a voice came out of the cloud, saying,
'This is My beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased. Hear Him!'"
God spoke because there were serious implications in what Peter had said and He intervened quickly to make two things very clear.
Moses and Elijah were men with great reputations and their appearance could have distracted the Disciples. But God ignored them. He told the Disciples that He was pleased with Jesus, His beloved Son. And He directed their attention to Him and commanded them to, "Hear Him".
His point was, and still is, that they were not to be distracted by the reputations of others, even if they are prophets and miracle workers.
What Jesus was saying, and doing, by bringing the Good News of the Kingdom is Jesus' message alone. He is God's Anointed One, God's Son, so "Hear Him"?
"And when the disciples heard it, they fell on their faces and were greatly afraid," Matthew 17'5-6.
Did the Father have to intervene? Well, what Peter blurted out seems to imply that Moses and Elijah be regarded as being on the same level as Jesus, the Father's beloved Son. That would mean that their words would carry the same weight of authority as those of His Son.
Great though they were, this is completely against God's will. The Father's interruption was absolute.
The word of Christ is far above Moses' words, and His miracles far above Elijah's. And that goes for every other voice that claims to present truth.
But does this raise the question of the position of the Old Testament? How is it to be read? That will be looked at later.