Thursday, August 6, 2015

Interfaith Days: Transfiguration of the Lord
In Orthodox Christianity, today is the Feast of the Transfiguration of Christ. As recorded in the New Testament (Matt. 17:1-8, Mark 9:2-9, Luke 9:28-36, and 2 Peter 1:16-19), Jesus, Peter, James and John were on a mountain, traditionally identified as Mount Tabor, and Jesus transformed into a shining figure, with Elijah and Moses appearing with him, signifying Jesus' continuity with the law and the prophets. This site provides more information about the Orthodox festival and the theological aspects.

According to the writer of that post: "This event shows forth the divinity of Christ, so that the disciples would understand after his Ascension that He was truly the radiant splendor of the Father, and that his Passion was voluntary (Mark 9:2-9). It also shows the possibility of our own theosis. This event was the subject of some debates between Gregory Palamas and Barlaam of Calabria. Barlaam believed that the light shining from Jesus was created light, while Gregory maintained the disciples were given grace to perceive the uncreated light of God. This supported Gregory's larger argument that although we cannot know God in His essence, we can know Him in his energies, as He reveals Himself."

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