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Verse 2. And was transfigured before them. The word transfigure means, to change the appearance or form. It does not denote the change of the substance of a thing, but simply of its appearance. It puts on a new aspect. What this change was, we are expressly told.

(1.) His face shone as the sun; that is, with a peculiar brightness. A similar appearance is described respecting Moses when he came down from the mount, Ex 34:29,30. See also Heb 1:3, where Christ is called the brightness of the glory of God; in the original, the splendour, or shining, like the brightness of the sun.

(2.) The second change was that of his garments. They were white as the light. Mark says, white as snow, so as no fuller on earth could whiten them. The word "fuller" means, commonly, one who dresses cloth, or fulls it, so as to make it more thick and strong. Here it means one who bleaches cloth, or makes it white; one who cleanses garments, when by wearing they become soiled. Among the Greeks, that was a distinct trade. Luke says, white and glistering; that is, resplendent, shining, or a very bright white. There is no evidence here that what is commonly said of him is true, that his body was so changed as to show what his glorified body is. His body, so far as the sacred writers inform us, underwent no change. All this splendour and glory was a change in appearance only. The Scriptures should be taken just as they are, without any attempt to affix a meaning to them which the sacred writers did not intend.

Raiment. Clothing; apparel. John refers to this transfiguration in Joh 1:14; and Peter in his second Epistle, 2 Pe 1:16,17.

{h} "as the sun" Re 1:16

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