When Jesus went up the mountain with three of His disciples, He was transfigured or altered from His human state to a glorified one. It was a fearful moment of splendor as the Son of Man revealed His heavenly identity and manifested His glory in human form to three trembling witnesses. The description of Jesus' appearance in this indescribable moment is life-changing, and reveals a glimpse into their future shortly after this transfiguration.
Moments after this earth-shaking experience as God the Father is heard audibly from Heaven and Elijah and Moses appear on the mountain with the Lord--Jesus declares to His disciples, "Tell the vision to no one until the Son of Man is risen from the dead..." (Matthew 17:2).
This was indicating that there would be a time that this manifest presence of Jesus, in all its blinding brilliance, would be revealed and exposed to the world, existing just below this mountaintop experience. Now look a little closer at this event as the Gospel records it:
"His face shone like the sun, and His clothes became as white as the light..." Matthew 17:9
The word "shone" is a derivative from the Greek word "Lampos" or "to shine with brilliance." The color of His clothing was "white as the light" which is "Leukos," the word for "white light" or "fire."
Jesus had become a brilliant, radiant white flame that caused the disciples to collapse to the ground in terror. This was not just a momentary passing experience, but rather, a prophetic keyhole into the future which would be accessible to all after His resurrection. But as you will see, there was another hinge on this door of His glorious transfiguring presence--the harvest.
Now His Glory is Revealed to the World.
This was not the last time that this brilliant glory would be revealed. Fast forward a few chapters to Matthew 28. We see a vacant grave where the Body of Jesus had been laid, and now, rather than Moses and Elijah appearing, the Angel of the Lord descends and rolls the stone away from the cavity and sits down. The angel announces to the two women which had come to fulfill their duties--that Christ was not dead but is very much alive, and then commands them to, "Go quickly and tell His disciples that He is risen from the dead!"
This is the first evangelistic mandate after Jesus had conquered the grave. The news of His resurrection raced through Galilee. When the angel commanded them to go, literally, "two by two," we again see the same "white-Leukos" or brilliant light that is white like snow and bright as lightening. The angel appears in the same glory that Jesus revealed on the Mount of Transfiguration and sends the two women with a Message.
What was once contained on the top of the mountain to three trembling disciples is now unveiled to the world. Mary Magdalene and her accomplice became the first evangelists proclaiming the resurrected Christ in the "Leukos," or His manifest power, that they had seen on the mountain top.
Suddenly, the vision begins to come into focus; the awesome presence and power revealed to the world in all of His amazing glory on the mountain, then later at the empty grave, is for a much larger, dynamic purpose. These manifestations were not just showcasing His stunning brilliance, but rather it was to confirm His resurrection and life to the world--past, present and future.
The glory of God revealed in these epic encounters was the sole spearhead of evangelism that would be confirmed with great signs and wonders. This becomes even more clear as we hear the description of the harvest as Jesus exhorts His apostles: "Do you not say, 'There are still four months and then comes the harvest'? Behold, I say to you, lift up your eyes and look on the fields, for they are already 'white' for harvest!" (John 4:35).
The same Greek word used at the Mount of Transfiguration to describe His glory and the same vivid language at the empty grave of a resurrected Jesus now defines the harvest--Leukos: brilliant white light and fire! A progressive advancement of God's presence was manifesting in the earth from the mountain, the grave and now--the harvest.
"And with great power gave the apostles witness of the resurrection of the Lord Jesus and great grace was upon them all." Acts 4:33
This lightning rod of God's transforming presence was now being translated into the first century church. They were "telling the vision" of what they had seen and heard on the mountain down below in the valley of decision and great power was upon them. When Stephen faced his persecutors as they opposed the message of Jesus it records, "And all that sat in the council looking steadfastly on him and saw his face as it had been the face of an angel..." (Acts 6:15).
Suddenly it was not a private matter of a select few. It had become a worldwide event that reached out past every social religious boundary with His message of eternal salvation. The awestruck disciples were now the carriers of His glorious presence into the "uttermost parts of the earth."