Matthew 17:8 – And when they had lifted up their eyes, they saw no man, save Jesus only.
This scene, a type of Christ’s Second Advent, was witnessed by those in the present (Peter, James, and John), those in the past (Moses and Elijah), and those eternal (the Father and the Son). As Jesus “prayed, the fashion of his countenance was altered” (Luke 9:29). What a prayer that must have been! When the disciples awoke they only saw Moses and Elijah for a short time, then they heard a foolish voice (Peter’s), a fearful voice (God’s), and a familiar voice (Jesus’). It was then they saw Him like they should have always seen Him – “Jesus only.” And that’s how we should see Him too: Jesus – minus everything, plus nothing.
If we are to see Jesus only we need to quit talking and start listening (vs. 4). Mark tells us that Peter didn’t know what to say and Luke said when he spoke he didn’t know what he had said! He would have been much better off saying nothing! Someone said, “An open ear is the only believable sign of an open heart.”
Next, we need to get our eyes off of others (vs. 5) whether sinners or saints. Peter was in effect putting Jesus on the same level with Moses and Elijah. Jesus is like none other (Acts 4:12) but focusing on others will detour us from gazing on Him.
Finally, we need to feel His touch (vs. 7). What we believe shouldn’t remain in our heads only; we need a heart-felt belief. Your fears can be calmed by Jesus’ touch. Don’t shrug the shoulder when He touches. Turn to Him, not away from Him.
The disciples didn’t just get a glimpse of the glorified Christ and move on with their lives. Both Peter and John wrote about it, and not once did they mention Moses or Elijah. They didn’t merely see “Jesus only” but “Jesus only with themselves” (Mark 9:8). Fellowship unhindered and unaltered by anything else.