The Transfiguration – the Virgin Birth in Reverse

In the resurrection followers of Christ receive a new body.  Why?  Why not just resurrect the old clay body and keep it for eternity?  The reason is that flesh and blood – that is earthly flesh and blood – cannot inherit the Kingdom of God.

 

1Co 15:50  Now this I say, brethren, that flesh and blood cannot inherit the kingdom of God; neither doth corruption inherit incorruption.

1Co 15:51  Behold, I show you a mystery; We shall not all sleep, but we shall all be changed,

1Co 15:52  In a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trump: for the trumpet shall sound, and the dead shall be raised incorruptible, and we shall be changed.

1Co 15:53  For this corruptible must put on incorruption, and this mortal must put on immortality.

1Co 15:54  So when this corruptible shall have put on incorruption, and this mortal shall have put on immortality, then shall be brought to pass the saying that is written, Death is swallowed up in victory.

 

So in a moment all of Christ’s followers will be changed.  We’ll put on a body that according to Philippians 3:21 is fashioned like unto Jesus’ glorious body.   This is part of the working to subdue the rebellious creation.  God shucks the skin off the Seed He has planted through the New Birth and clothes that New Creature in a body that no longer struggles against this born-from-above inward man (1 Peter 1:23, 2 Corinthians 5:17, Romans 7:21-25).

 

Php 3:20  For our conversation is in heaven; from whence also we look for the Savior, the Lord Jesus Christ:

Php 3:21  Who shall change our vile body, that it may be fashioned like unto his glorious body, according to the working whereby he is able even to subdue all things unto himself.

 

So what has all of that got to do with the title of this post – “The Transfiguration – the Virgin Birth in Reverse?”   At the Transfiguration (Mark 9:1-10), Christ reassumed the glory that He had with the Father before the world was.  It’s the exact reverse of the Virgin Birth, where He set aside His glory and came as a servant in the likeness of sinful flesh (Philippians 2:6-8, Romans 8:3).  What we learn from the Transfiguration is that in a moment, the Son of God can manifest His glory and the next moment hide it. 

 

Did Jesus get a new body when He was resurrected? No. Jesus was resurrected in the same body in which He died. We know this because for one, that is what He said would happen (John 2:19-22). We can also look at the physical evidence. The tomb was empty and the body He walked the earth in after the resurrection bore the physical scars of the crucifixion (John 20:27). Jesus did not need a new body when He was resurrected. His flesh and blood can inherit the Kingdom of God just as it was when it was slain (Revelation 5). Why? Because the body in which He came was not corrupt like our old clay bodies of death as Paul called them. He came in the body that He had before the foundation of world. He came in the likeness of sinful flesh, not in sinful flesh. At the virgin birth He simply divested Himself of His glory, just like He did when the Transfiguration was over.

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2 Responses to “The Transfiguration – the Virgin Birth in Reverse”


  1. 1 T Crosthwaite July 20, 2009 at 5:06 pm

    You may find these articles on virgin birth of interest and coming from an unusual angle

    http://www.wallsofjericho.info/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=14&Itemid=26

    and, similarly TheologyWeb:

    Forum — General Theistics 101
    Thread — Does the Bible teach that Mary was a virgin when Jesus was conceived?

    http://www.theologyweb.com/campus/forumdisplay.php?f=160

  2. 2 hayesrod July 22, 2009 at 5:29 am

    I took a quick look and I don’t agree. The approach they are taking is like someone trying to understand what an elephant looks like and does by standing a inch away from his side and making inferences from the small patch of skin they can see. The significance of the virgin birth is that the Son of God physically got up off the throne of God in Heaven, set aside His glory, and humbled Himself to the point of the humblest of babes and then walked this earth along the path He asks His followers to follow as the Captain of our Salvation. The significance of the virgin birth has nothing to do with Mary, whether or not she had had sex with someone during her life, Joseph, Eli, the lineages etc. It has to do with the person of the Son of God. He is that One, who before anything else was physical, proceeded from the Father as the Word Made Flesh. He then went on to perform the works of creation – one of which was to form a dirt man named Adam out of the clay of this earth. The same skin that the Roman nail tore 2000 years ago is the same skin that got dirty when He reached down into the dirt and made Adam. That’s the significance of the virgin birth. You may want to download my pdg file on the main page of this blog. It speaks to this in some detail. If you take the teaching of the virgin birth in isolation it is hard to understand, if you take it in the context of the teaching of the Son of God it is simple.


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