The Shining Face

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Original photo by krosseel 

Daily Reformation, Numbers 6:24-27

From the Reformer

There is also especial comfort to be derived from Paul’s assertion that the “ministration,” or doctrine, of the Law “passeth away”; for otherwise there would be naught but eternal condemnation. The doctrine of the Law “passes away” when the preaching of the Gospel of Christ finds place. To Christ, Moses shall yield, that he alone may hold sway. Moses shall not terrify the conscience of the believer. When, perceiving the glory of Moses, the conscience trembles and despairs before God’s wrath, then it is time for Christ’s glory to shine with its gracious, comforting light into the heart. Then can the heart endure Moses and Elijah. For the glory of the Law, or the unveiled face of Moses, shall shine only until man is humbled and driven to desire the blessed countenance of Christ. If you come to Christ, you shall no longer hear Moses to your fright and terror; you shall hear him as one who remains servant to the Lord Christ, leaving the solace and the joy of his countenance unobscured.

—Martin Luther, Assorted Sermons

Pulling It Together

Peter, James, and John observed three brilliances on the Mount of Transfiguration but in the end there was only One Light. If the two lesser lights of Moses and Elijah were permitted to remain before the disciples, they surely would have built three tabernacles. Today there would be a Judeo-Christian Church with its three major denominations. Worse, people would have been robbed of that special peace that comes only from the shining face of Christ. It is when you have been delighted by him alone, that you know real grace. Otherwise you will always be vainly trying to please God instead of being satisfied with him. This always results in a fractured view of seeing God through a Mosaic veil. God would have you know real blessing and the peace that comes from his face shining upon you.

Mark E. Ryman, Daily Reformation: Devotions with the Reformers


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