Sermon quotes on the Transfiguration

W. H. Auden

Christ did not enchant men; He demanded that they believe in Him: except on one occasion, the Transfiguration. For a brief while, Peter, James, and John were permitted to see Him in His glory. For that brief while they had no need of faith. The vision vanished, and the memory of it did not prevent them from all forsaking Him when He was arrested, or Peter from denying that he had ever known Him.

The Complete Works of W. H. Auden, Vol 6 (Princeton, 2015)

Gregory Palamas

The Light of the Transfiguration of the Lord is not something that comes to be and then vanishes, nor is it subject to the sensory faculties, although it was contemplated by corporeal eyes for a short while upon an inconsequential mountaintop.

“Sermon on the Transfiguration” (Orthodox Church in America)

Alexander Maclaren

Remember that vision on the Mount of Transfiguration, and let it be ours, even in the glare of earthly joys and brightnesses, to lift up our eyes, like those wondering three, and “see no man any more, save Jesus only.”

 “Consider Christ,” Sermons Preached in Union Chapel (1872)

Frederick Buechner

It is as strange a scene as there is in the Gospels. Even without the voice from the cloud to explain it, they had no doubt what they were witnessing. It was Jesus of Nazareth all right, the man they’d tramped many a dusty mile with, whose mother and brothers they knew, the one they’d seen as hungry, tired, footsore as the rest of them. But it was also the Messiah, the Christ, in his glory. It was the holiness of the man shining through his humanness, his face so afire with it they were almost blinded.

Whistling in the Dark (HarperOne, 1993).

Edwin Hubbell Chapin

[The Redeemer] illustrates the purport of life as he descends from his transfiguration to toil, and goes forward to exchange that robe of heavenly brightness for the crown of thorns.

The Crown of Thorns (1860)

Henry Clay Trumbull 

In the time of Jesus the mount of transfiguration was on the way to the cross. In our day the cross is on the road to the transfiguration. If you would be on the mountain you must consent to pass over the road to it.

Five Thousand Best Modern Illustrations (Smith, 1931).

Marilynne Robinson

Wherever you turn your eyes, the world can shine like transfiguration. You don’t have to bring a thing to it except a little willingness to see.

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