Listen to Him

Read: Mark 9:1-13

Last Sunday Pastor Ken preached the sermon, “True Life Comes When We See Him, Confess Him, and Follow Him,” from Mark 8:22-9:1. This Sunday we will consider the event of the transfiguration of Jesus from Mark 9:1-13. As you prepare your heart for our corporate gathering, let these words from Dr. Akin encourage you and move you to further consider the state of your heart before God.

Heart Preparation

In these verses only two persons speak: Peter and God the Father. Jesus does not say a word. He doesn’t need to! Peter’s words we can set aside and even excuse in light of his fear (v. 6) and his being suddenly awakened from a nap (Luke 9: 32). We must hear the Father’s words and heed them. Our spiritual lives depend on it.

Our Human Perspectives Are Often Foolish (Mark 9: 5-6)

The disciples understandably are amazed and “terrified” at the revelation of the glorified Christ. Peter says, “It is good we are here.” You think?! He then suggests that this mountaintop summit should be continued and he, James, and John will gladly construct three tents for Jesus and the honored guests from the past. Is Peter placing Jesus on equal standing with Elijah and Moses? Does he think that up on a mountain in isolation is where God wants His workers? Peter was so excited and scared he just had to say something. His mind would only catch up with his words after the cross and the resurrection. We will never understand the person and work of Christ apart from the cross and resurrection. Leave them out, and He is at best a moralist and at worst a self-destructive fool. Leave out the cross, and there is no atonement. Leave out the resurrection, and there is no victory over sin. In sinful weakness we would avoid the cross, stay on the mountain, and make ourselves comfortable. In contrast Jesus will embrace the cross, ascend Calvary’s hill, and drink the cup of suffering filled with the wrath of God.

The Divine Perspective Is What We Need (Mark 9: 7-8)

Suddenly a cloud, God’s shekinah glory cloud, overshadows or envelops them (cf. Exod 40: 35; 1 Kgs 8: 10-11). We do not need man-made tents (v. 5). Rather, we need the presence of the living God, who now speaks words that thunder with authority and are pregnant with meaning: “This is My beloved Son; listen to Him!” The statement recalls Jesus’ baptism (1: 11). It calls to mind Deuteronomy 18: 15, where Moses says God will send His prophet and “You must listen to him.” This is God’s beloved, one-of-a-kind Son. We are to listen to Him and only Him. When the cloud disappears, Elijah and Moses vanish, and “Jesus alone” remains. Moses and Elijah were great revealers of truth along with all the other prophets, but the voice of God commands us to listen to His Son, Jesus. Give Him your ears. Have eyes only for Him (Heb 12: 2). He can give you what neither
Moses nor Elijah could ever give. This is God’s perspective on the matter!

Excerpt from Christ-Centered Exposition: Exalting Jesus in Mark, by Daniel L. Akin, pp. 181-182.


Song List for Sunday

  1. Raise Up the Crown (All Hail the Power of Jesus’ Name), by Chris Tomlin
  2. Mighty to Save, by Hillsong United
  3. By Faith, by Keith and Kristyn Getty
  4. Revelation Song, by Kari Jobe

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