Spring 2008

The Transfiguration of Jesus

Klaus Berger

“The Christology of the Transfiguration event is a theology of epiphany, which helped promote the earliest identifications of Jesus as distinct from the prophets.”

1. Exegetical remarks


The event of the Transfiguration forms the center of Mark’s gospel. It is a visionary confirmation of Peter’s confession of Jesus as the Messiah in the preceding chapter (Mk 8), and in descending from the mountain after the Transfiguration, Jesus is setting out on his path toward the Passion. The Transfiguration is thus the climax and turning point of what was recounted so far of the life of Jesus. In addition, apart from Jesus’s baptism, it is the only place where the heavenly Father himself speaks with a voice from heaven, and it is only here that the Old Testament prophets—Jesus’s “colleagues”—appear.

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