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Showing posts from 2016

Sermon Recap for December 25

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Well, it’s the last sermons of the year. Here is the complete Christmas Eve service (it was filmed from the balcony with the condenser mic, so the sound is a bit different) and then Sunday morning’s sermon.December 25 AM (Audio) Matthew 1

It's not about the Signs: Matthew 24

In Summary:
Jesus leaves the Temple, after lamenting that Jerusalem’s “house is being left…desolate” (Matthew 23:38). As He does this, the disciples point out the Temple buildings. Given that Jesus had been there more than once or twice, it is likely the implication is one of highlighting the impressive nature of the structure. Jesus is, well, not impressed. He is well aware of the future of the building. Not one stone will be left another (24:2).

The disciples are, understandably, distressed by this statement. As a result, they ask Jesus about when these events will occur. The answer from Jesus is not nearly as comforting as most of us would like. He describes a world that begins falling apart, tribulations, and judgment. Not exactly a pleasant picture.

The chapter closes out with a reminder to be ready because we do not know the day and the hour when Jesus returns. Actually, let us be very specific. He states it this way: “you do not know which day your Lord is coming.” (Matthew 24:…

Book: The Message of the Twelve

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I will admit it: I’m way behind on book reviews. I’ve had this handy volume from B&H for a couple of months. Sorry about that.The Minor Prophets. Those twelve pesky short books at the end of the Old Testament. You know which ones I’m talking about---the part of your ‘read through the Bible in a year’ plan that you dread the most. Why do we read these? Apart from Micah 5:2 and maybe Malachi 3, do we even have sermons about them?A good step in fixing this neglect is found in Richard Alan Fuhr & Gary E. Yates’ The Message of the Twelve. The authors dig into the Minor Prophets and help us see how God uses this portion of inspired Scripture even to this day. First, the work explains why all twelve are treated together. This grouping is also called the Book of the Twelve, and they should not be treated as unified only by their size. The first section of The Message of the Twelve addresses why one should study all of these together as well as the separate books.I found this a bit mor…

Sermon Recap for December 18 2016

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Good morning! Here is Sunday morning’s sermon. Sunday night was the community choir event at East Union, so we dismissed our services so those who wanted to could participate.December 18 AM: Revelation 12 (audio here)
Saving ChristmasSaving ChristmasDoug Hibbard / GeneralRevelation 12Christmas is in Danger
Not from Abominable Snowmen or Hidden Clauses
Not from Happy Holiday-wielding Businesses
Not from the ACLU
Or from the...."them." Whoever "Them" might be
The Real Dangers:
1. Satan (defeated)
2. False religion
3. World Oppression
4. Silent Witnesses
5. Us. The church.Exported from Logos Bible Software, 8:15 AM December 20, 2016.

Spies and Promises: Joshua 2

In Summary:
After an interlude when Joshua is commissioned to take command, the narrative story of Israel continues with Joshua 2. Joshua sends two spies into Jericho to check out the situation. Then, things get exciting.

Overall, this chapter is worthy of a good action movie. You have a secret mission into foreign territory. Your spies make it as far as an inn at the edge of town, where they are found out. The king (keep in mind, kings ruled over cities in that era) sends word to the innkeeper to hand over the spies. She doesn’t. Instead, she hides them, deceives the king, and helps the enemies of her nation escape. There’s enough intrigue for a thriller.

And then you have the potential scandal, as shown in the labeling of Rahab as a harlot or prostitute (see NASB and ESV in Joshua 2:1). The word and grammar here are vague enough to suggest that Rahab was, at times, engaged in such a profession but that she was also an innkeeper. Without getting too nerdy here, I have seen some comme…

Book: Martin Luther

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Please note, the book is a biography of Martin Luther. I’m not reviewing Martin Luther. Also, today’s book was provided by Cross Focused Reviews.Some years ago, a blog tour first brought the Christian Biographies for Young Readers series into our home. Now, they have become a fixture in our learning processes. The most recent entry in this series is Martin Luther. (Isn’t nice how easy it is to title a biography?) Simonetta Carr has again provided more information in 64 pages than one would have thought possible.First, she does an excellent job providing an overview of the complicated situation of the sixteenth century, including the selling of indulgences by the Church at the time. Carr’s summary uses some terms that are anachronistic (I doubt Luther considered his work to go “viral,” p. 22,) but these terms make plain the meaning.Second, the history reads like I am familiar with from much more in-depth books. For a 64-page children’s biography, the detail is excellent and, more impor…

Sermon Recap for Dec 12

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Good morning! Here is Sunday morning’s sermon. Sunday night was a bit less structured than it normally is…so it’s not here.Sermon: John 1:1-5 (audio here)&nbsp
Unconquerable LightUnconquerable LightDoug Hibbard / GeneralJohn 1:1–5&nbspJohn 1:1-5
John 1:1–5 NASB95&nbsp&nbsp&nbsp In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.
&nbsp&nbsp&nbsp He was in the beginning with God.
&nbsp&nbsp&nbsp All things came into being through Him, and apart from Him nothing came into being that has come into being.
&nbsp&nbsp&nbsp In Him was life, and the life was the Light of men.
&nbsp&nbsp The Light shines in the darkness, and the darkness did not comprehend it.The&nbsp darkness&nbsp&nbsp around&nbsp us
The&nbsp darkness&nbsp&nbsp before&nbsp us
The&nbsp darkness&nbsp&nbsp beneath&nbsp us
The&nbsp darkness&nbsp&nbsp within&nbsp us
The&nbsp Light&…

Woe There! Matthew 23

In Summary:
As we reach Matthew 23, Jesus is no longer taking questions from the Pharisees and other religious leaders of Israel. He isn’t asking them questions, either. He begins to directly address their sinful behavior and the destruction they have wreaked on the people of Israel.

It is noteworthy that His first comments are not directed to the scribes and Pharisees. His first statements are directed to the crowd. Jesus does not take the religious leaders aside and rebuke them privately or calmly. He warns the people who the religious leaders are trying to lead. (I’m fairly certain that there are implications of this for modern religious leaders who need rebuking. Uncomfortable implications.) The primary warning to the crowd is that they should not become like their leaders.

He tells the crowd that their teachers are saying admirable things, but that their lives are not worth following (v. 3). He then goes on to present the right approach to the Kingdom of Heaven: service and sacri…

Sermon Recap for December 4

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Merry Christmas! I know, we have three more Sundays until Christmas, but I like this time of year. Sunday Morning Sermon: Isaiah 53 (audio)Sunday evening was our annual budget business meeting. We voted to increase our financial involvement in mission work as well as maintaining our partnership level with the Southern Baptist Convention.I did share a few thoughts on Matthew 1. And I can’t find where I put the SD card with the video. When I find it, you’ll see it.Remember our Christmas Eve service is coming up on December 24 at 6:30 PM.

At the Feast: Matthew 22

In Summary:Remember, first of all, that this chapter of Matthew falls within the Passion Week, the last week of the earthly life of Christ. (Ever consider how it is to describe a time-limited event for the Eternal Son of God? It’s not really the “last week of the life of Christ, because He’s eternal, but it’s the last earthly week, except for when He come back at the end of time….)That this chapter falls into the Passion Week brings us important context for our understanding. There are no more tours of Galilee or the Decapolis. Matthew records no more miracles performed after this point. These are the closing teachings of Jesus. We read here the parable of the wedding feast, which we’ll look at more in a moment. We also see Jesus address paying taxes with the statement that even the hyper-liberal Jesus Seminar decided had to be Him, “Render to Caesar that which is Caesar’s, and to God that which is God’s.” (Matthew 22:21) We also see Jesus rebuke the Sadducees for not believing in the…

Book: StarStruck

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Yes, I do still plan to maintain the blog. And even hope to post to it from time to time :)Space. The Final Frontier. Well, those words aren’t exactly mine, but they are words I grew up with and love as a description of the skies above us. While I remember being fascinated by Jacques Cousteau and the underwater world, space was where I wanted to sea, study, and be… (still willing to pastor First Baptist Church, Lunar Rock, The Moon). Into that space-fascination comes today’s book, Star Struck, by Dr. David Bradstreet and Steve Rabey. Dr. Bradstreet has a Ph.D. in astronomy, which would support his qualification to write about space. Rabey’s background is church history, which is relevant…how?In this manner: one of the goals of Star Struck is to deal with the supposed conflict between Christian faith and scientific work. Rabey provides some good background information on the interaction between the church in history and scientific exploration. The collaboration does an excellent job ex…

Sermon Recap for November 28

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Happy beginning of Advent to you all! Here is the Sunday morning sermon from November 27 and the Thanksgiving service sermon. Sunday night didn’t film out well, so it’s not here.Tuesday night Thanksgiving ServiceSunday Morning: Isaiah 40 (audio here)
Joy--Advent 2016Isaiah 40
Joy in  Chaos
  Remember where they are
  Remember the height from which they have fallen
Joy in  Opposition
  Consider Isaiah's life
  Consider Hezekiah's life
Joy in  Sacrifice
  Not to false idols
  Not cheaply
Comfort in  the King
  The King who leads forth the stars
  The King who holds the oceans
Comfort in the  King's Message
  The Unfailing Word
  The Everlasting Word
Comfort in the  King's Arrival
  The Messiah is coming!
  Prepare Ye the Way!
What of your life is ready for the King?
What of your life is surrendered to the King?
What of your next 5 weeks would change?

Sermon Recap for November 13

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Well, it’s Thursday afternoon. And I’m just now getting this done. Partly because of insanely slow Internet service. Partly because stuff had to get done. I’m hopeful that the craziest part of the week is over.Since the bulk of the week is over, that is.Sunday Morning: The Longest War (audio here) Ephesians 6:10-17(Outline and notes are after the evening video, just scroll down.)Sunday Evening: Ephesians 6:18-20 and Q&A (Audio here)On Sunday nights, we typically take some time to do Bible questions and answers. That is in the video but not the audio. I think I repeated the questions well enough to understand what was going on.
The Longest WarThe Longest WarDoug Hibbard / GeneralEphesians 6:10–17Ephesians 6:10–17 NASB95    Finally, be strong in the Lord and in the strength of His might.
    Put on the full armor of God, so that you will be able to stand firm against the schemes of the devil.
    For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the power…

Triumphs and Cleanings: Matthew 21

In Summary:
Matthew 21 opens with a familiar scene: the Triumph! Typically, when conquering kings entered cities, they came with a triumphal procession. It was a common practice in the ancient world. It remains a practice to this day—victors are given ticker tape parades in New York City, after all! The other time for the triumphal procession was when the conqueror returned home from conquest. Either image can work for Jesus’ entry to Jerusalem at this point in history. Jerusalem is the place “where God chose to place His name” (2 Chronicles 6:6) and as such is where the returning King comes to celebrate His victory. Jerusalem is also the starting point for His conquest of humanity. 
The catch is, victory parades are only moments in time. The Conquering King remains victorious, but so many of the adoring fans go back to work that the celebration ends and is quickly forgotten. This happens here—Jesus is victorious. People are forgetful.
The next thing the King does upon His return is see …

Sermon Recap for November 6

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It was the Sunday before Election Day, so naturally I kept the sermon focused on something else entirely. We spent the morning addressing loving one another and submitting to one another that God be glorified in our lives. And the evening was on spiritual gifts. The evening video, if it ever uploads, has our usual Sunday night question-and-answer festivities followed by the message.Morning Sermon: Ephesians 5:21 (audio here)Video:Notes:Ephesians 5:21 NASB95and be subject to one another in the fear of Christ. This phrase links two of the most contentious subjects in church. How we act in marriage and what we sing as Christians. Submission is a touchy subject But it's worse than you think "Submit" in one translation is "be subject" in another Ὑποτασσόμενοι Our rights? Subject to the needs of others. Our desires? Subject to the needs of others. Our comforts? Subject to the needs of others. 1. Be considerate of others 2. Be worthy of other people's …

Vineyard Viewpoints: Matthew 20

In Summary:Matthew 20 records the parable of the workers in the vineyard, and then goes on to another foretelling of Jesus’ death. In light of that, the mother of James and John requests that her sons may sit at the left and right hand of Jesus in His Kingdom. The chapter wraps up with the healing of two blind men on the road out of Jericho. What do we make of this? This is the third prediction of the Cross and the Resurrection we see in Matthew, which tells us, again, that Jesus was not surprised by anything that happened in the Passion week. The second passage, requesting special treament in the Kingdom, connects with the laborers in the vineyard, so we’ll deal with those together In Focus. The last passage highlights that Jesus never overlooked people. In Focus:Let us put the opening story, Matthew 20:1-16, in focus. Jesus returns to an agrarian motif here, highlighting that the Kingdom of Heaven is like a farm with a harvest. The landowner, the one whose harvest it truly was, went…

Sermon Recap for October 30

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Good evening! Happy Reformation Day! Let us celebrate by remembering the Five Solas of the Reformation before we get to yesterday’s sermon. They are:Sola Fide: Salvation by Faith Alone.Sola Scriptura: Authority in Scripture AloneSolus Christus: Salvation through Christ aloneSola Gratia: Salvation by grace aloneSoli Deo Gloria: glory to God aloneThree deal with salvation and push back against the idea of salvation by good deeds or financial means or through obedience to human rules. Sola Scriptura pushes back against people in authority over the church—there are church leaders and teachers, but all are (or ought to be) bound by Scripture. The only person who holds authority over a Christian is the Person, Jesus Christ. The last, soli Deo gloria, reminds us where our worship goes.And they’re all in Latin because Latin was the nerd language of the sixteenth century. Sunday Morning, October 30 (Audio)The Sweetest Songs Ephesians 5:1-21 What do we want our legacy to be? Ephesians 5:1 Ephes…

Book: Discovering the Septuagint: A Graded Reader

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Today’s book comes from the Academic/Professional side of Kregel Publishers. This means we know two things: it’s going to be nerdy, and it’s going to be good. I have a high regard for the choices of this publisher (at least right now) and am generally pleased with the materials they produce. This includes the simple portion of the physical concept. This book is no exception as a hardcover, well-bound and sturdy.Discovering the Septuagint: A Guided Reader is more than just a pretty face. Inside, you will find work overseen by Karen Jobes (PhD, Westminster Theological and Professor at Wheaton) digging into the Septuagint. Considering that the Septuagint is likely the Old Testament more used by the first few centuries of Christianity, one can understand the importance.Second, many of us pastoral Bible nerds have hung onto our Greek skills better than our Hebrew. While we should correct that error, we can also look harder into the Old Testament with the Greek translation used by such peop…

What is Possible? Matthew 19

In Summary:Matthew 19 is fun. Say that with me, “Matthew 19 is fun.” After all, who doesn’t love a discussion of divorce followed by a statement about eunuchs? Then we see Jesus welcome children (contrary to the adult disciples) and chase off a potential financial backer. The chapter wraps up with Peter asking whether or not the disciples could expect much from following Jesus.It is necessary, first, to look at the geography of this chapter. Verse 1 tells us that Jesus has departed Galilee and is coming into Judea. It’s His last trip of that nature. The Cross is in sight. Even with so weighty a moment ahead of Jesus, the Pharisees are ready to test Him. (In their defense, they didn’t know about the upcoming Crucifixion. They hadn’t quite hatched that plan.)So they ask Jesus to side with one or the other of their views on divorce and remarriage. The answer and its application to today are rooted in a fuller understanding of culture, text, and context than I want to undertake here. The …

Sermon Recap for October 23

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Well, last night was business meeting. I’m not going to post that. It was mostly dull.I referenced Pray4EveryHome.com in the service yesterday. Click the link to find out more.Morning Sermon: The Sweetest Speech: Ephesians 4:29-32 (Audio)(For the record, people aren’t clapping for me coming to the pulpit.)
The Sweetest SpeechEphesians 4:29–32 NASB95
    Let no unwholesome word proceed from your mouth, but only such a word as is good for edification according to the need of the moment, so that it will give grace to those who hear.
    Do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God, by whom you were sealed for the day of redemption.
    Let all bitterness and wrath and anger and clamor and slander be put away from you, along with all malice.
    Be kind to one another, tender-hearted, forgiving each other, just as God in Christ also has forgiven you. Unwholesome  Words
Words of  Edification
  Egg fu what?  Edification
  Building up, strengthening, healing
Grieving  God in our Words
    a.    Bitterness
 …

Sermon Recap for Oct 16

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Good afternoon! It’s been a week for the birds, so I haven’t gotten even the sermons posted. But, here they are!Sunday Morning: The Worthiest Walk, Ephesians 4:1-6 (Audio here)
The Worthiest WalkThe Worthiest WalkDoug Hibbard / GeneralEphesians 4:1–16Ephesians 4:1 NASB95 Therefore I, the prisoner of the Lord, implore you to walk in a manner worthy of the calling with which you have been called, Ephesians 4:1-6 Implore? THIS IS A COMMAND !Examples like PaulSurrendered Fully to JesusNot always look like success Not always accepted by the world "Walk in a manner worthy"Following ONE LORD!Ephesians 4:4–6 NASB95 There is one body and one Spirit, just as also you were called in one hope of your calling; one Lord, one faith, one baptism, one God and Father of all who is over all and through all and in all. When we chase a multitude of gods, division happensWhen we feel superior to others, division happensWhen we divide over issues other than the faith, divisi…

Sermon Recap for October 9

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Good Afternoon! Here is Sunday morning’s sermon. We spent Sunday night dealing with politics, so it was long. And not super exciting. I won’t be posting it :) Audio is here

Sermon Recap for October 2

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Good evening! Here is yesterday morning’s sermon. Last night, we had a lot of good questions, but those just don’t translate well for the audio.The audio link is here.
The Biggest SubjectThe Biggest SubjectDoug Hibbard / GeneralEphesians / Ephesians 1:18–23Ephesians 1:18-23
Chosen in Christ (v. 4)
Having Redemption (v. 7)
The Resurrection is the Proof of Jesus' Authority
This age and the age to come
All things are in subjection to Christ
Including the Church, His body
His Power: Nothing else works
Far Above in Sovereignty!
Actions?
1. Surrender to Christ
2. Obey as a Church
3. Submit in All Things, not just the easy ones

Learning for Life

Today, I should be writing something about politics. Or food. Or how food affects politics. That would be a good one.Instead, though, I’m in class all day. Well, technically, it’s a “Pastor’s Conference.” But I’m back at Ouachita Baptist University for the day. Ann and I will be with the School of Christian Studies faculty (back in our day, they were the Biblical Studies Department) learning about….MALACHI! That’s right. 6 hours in Malachi. And we won’t scratch the surface.Then, over the weekend, we’ll both peruse a few articles in the latest Journal of the Evangelical Theological Society (I need to renew that subscription). Why?Because we learn for life. It’s necessary. For us, we mainly do this in areas like Biblical Studies, communications, history, but we also love places like science museums and art galleries. The world is a big place.The God who created it is a big God, after all. And loving God with all that we are means we are not going to put our brains in “park” and stop gro…

Book: Everything is Possible by Jen Bricker

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First, your eyes are not deceiving you. The young lady on the book cover is doing a handstand, and has no legs. Jen Bricker was born without legs. This book is her story, told with the help of Sheryl Burk. As with any biography/autobiography, it is difficult to comment on the book without commenting on the subject matter. Everything is Possible starts with the story of Bricker sailing into an event in Qatar attached to a hot air balloon. It sets the tone for a high-flying adventure. The first chapter grounds that adventure in the challenges of being born without legs and the true cost that was to Jen Bricker and her family. Her biological parents felt ill-equipped to care for her and so placed her for adoption. From there, the story picks up. Bricker is an unstoppable force, and her faith in God is the push she needs to do whatever she sets her mind to. We find a girl who is limited only by those around her, and who typically finds a way around those limitations.This results in a stor…

Forgiveness: Matthew 18

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In Summary:
Jesus is headed to the Cross. We’ve seen Him clearly state this in Matthew 17, Matthew 16….you get the idea. At this point, the Twelve Disciples are beginning to get the idea as well. How can we see that? Look at the question which opens Matthew 18. The question arises about who is the greatest?

The Twelve are starting to think about rank and position, because if Jesus is about to come into His kingdom, then it’s time to assign the work. It is time for each of them to find their place in the vanguard of the kingdom, so Jesus needs to point out which one comes first. He does not pick one of the Twelve, though, to point out the greatness of His followers. Instead, He takes a child and makes a point about humility, trust, and compassion.

Which becomes the common thread for the remainder of Matthew 18. Jesus highlights the need to receive children and not cause them to stumble, then goes on to point out how His hearers should strongly remove what causes them to stumble! We the…

Sermon Recap for September 25

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Here are the sermons from September 25.Morning Sermon: Ephesians 1:1-2 (audio here)Who are we?Most of us identify as Americans, as Arkansans, as something... But who are we, really? SaintsSet apart by God Set apart for God Faithful OnesChoosing to Obey Choosing to Stand Fast For those, there are Grace and PeaceFrom God the Father and the Lord Jesus Christ Evening Sermon: (Audio here)A good startJoshua dies The people wisely seek God for what their next step is Judah asks Simeon for help and commits to help Simeon They then defeat Adoni-bezek Thumbs/big toes Taking of Jerusalem Family relationships: Kenites (they'll be back) Benjamites do not actually take and keep Jerusalem. They cohabit with the Jebusites. (That's bad) What about us?1. Seek the Lord for HOW! He's already given us the WHAT 2. Get the HELP you need Honor the COMMITMENTS you make for it 3. Finish the WORK ahead of you Do not leave SNARES for later

Book: NKJV Teen Study Bible

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Today, let’s look at the NKJV Teen Study Bible from Zondervan. I’d like to focus on the study helps involved with this Bible, because a simple review is no place to treat with the weighty issues of Bible translation critique. I’ll say this and move forward: there are good reasons to use a translation other than the New King James version of the Bible. There are also some good reasons to use it. The best Bible translation of the world is basically useless if you don’t read it. So if you’ll read NKJV but won’t read NASB or HCSB or NIV, then there’s no reason not to read NKJV. (There are spurious pseudo-translations that you should not read. This is not one.)First observation: I’ve got the hardcover from Zondervan. It has held up well to several weeks of being tossed in a backpack and lugged around. After all, if you want to give a Bible to a teenager, you need it to hold up.Second observation: contents are in color, which helps with attention span and focus. Further, colors help separat…

Of Fish and Taxes: Matthew 17

In Summary:
Matthew 17 opens with the story of Jesus’ transfiguration. It ends with a fishing story. Sandwiched between those two is a healing of a demon-possessed young man. It’s a fairly typical “week in the life” segment for Jesus and His disciples.

Matthew opens with giving a specific time reference. The opening event, The Transfiguration, begins six days after the statements in Matthew 16:28. Without poking at too many great scholars, it is worth noting that the narrative has Jesus leading Peter, James, and John up the mountain after six days. Whether or not the whole event took place in just one day is debatable. It may have been too much of a mountain.

While up on the mountain, Jesus is “transfigured” or changed in front of the three who are with Him. The general consensus is that He appears as His glory truly is. (See, for example, Revelation 1:13-16.) Along with Him are Moses and Elijah.

They come down the mountain and encounter a man with a demon-possessed son. The disciples…