And after six days Jesus took with him Peter and James, and John his brother, and led them up a high mountain by themselves. And he was transfigured before them, and his face shone like the sun, and his clothes became white as light. … He was still speaking when, behold, a bright cloud overshadowed them, and a voice from the cloud said, “This is my beloved Son, with whom I am well pleased; listen to him.”
Matthew 17:1-2, 5.
In the book of Revelation, the Apostle John records his vision of the Lord Jesus Christ and says, in part:
In his right hand he held seven stars, from his mouth came a sharp two-edged sword, and his face was like the sun shining in full strength.
When the solar eclipse was occurring on August 21, 2017, we stood transfixed while watching the moon march through the afternoon sky, with the sun high in the heavens. When the moon completely covered the sun, the corona was still visible as a flaming band surrounding the image of the dark moon.
But, when the moon continued its preordained trek across the sky and began to uncover the sun, the sun’s radiant light was not restrained any longer. The power of that first glimpse of the sun’s light was so strong that the corona which had transfixed our gaze seemed to disappear in the brilliance of the sun’s pure light. And, the moon’s participation in this planetary spectacle was almost obliterated by the re-emergence of the sun’s light.
How bright is the light?
Again Jesus spoke to them, saying, “I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will not walk in darkness, but will have the light of life.”
Scripture writers recorded the light emanating from the Lord at his transfiguration by referencing the sun and its bright light. Paul records his confrontation with a bright light when the Lord called him to do His work:
“As I was on my way and drew near to Damascus, about noon a great light from heaven suddenly shone around me.”
How bright is the light? The light from the Lord blinded Paul as he was on the road to Damascus. Similarly, we were told that it was dangerous for us to gaze at the sun with our naked eyes, even when the moon was covering part of it. In our sinful nature, we cannot look at the holiness and magnificence of God — He is surrounded in blinding light.
We used eclipse glasses to watch the heavenly event without danger. The Light of our Lord is strong enough to find us when we stray, to guide our path and to extinguish the darkness of sin. When we look at God through the righteousness of His Son, we see His power and His glory, and we have comfort in His omnipotence because we are in His arms.
For a couple of minutes during the totality of the eclipse, the sun’s light was stopped by the moon. The Son’s Light, however, does not stop — it will last forever!
Father, I thank You for the privilege of watching Your creation operate in such wondrous ways. I praise Your name for the gift of seeing Your power and majesty as they are exhibited in Your creation. You are God, and there is none like You. Praise and honor are due to You, and You alone.