2 Peter 1:16-18

For we did not follow cleverly devised myths when we made known to you the power and coming of our Lord Jesus Christ, but we had been eyewitnesses of his majesty. For he received honour and glory from God the Father when that voice was conveyed to him by the Majestic Glory, saying, ‘This is my Son, my Beloved, with whom I am well pleased.’ We ourselves heard this voice come from heaven, while we were with him on the holy mountain.

The first followers of Jesus grounded their faith in the events of the life of Jesus. The “transfiguration”, which we hear of in this weeks gospel reading (Matt 17:1-9) , was a moment when Jesus’ view of the nature of God was validated by a voice from heaven. This mountain top experience had a profound, life changing impact on Peter, James and John. Their idea of God was transformed into a living personal experience embodied in the presence of Jesus. Whenever they thought about God now, they could only see Jesus. God was no longer a significant idea but a person. There was no longer a set of rules to live by but a relationship to be nurtured and grown. God is not distant but present here and now.