In verse sixteen Peter is defending himself, James, and John from slander. I imagine them being all too familiar with this harsh, behind the back, type of talking. A rumor was going around that they had created “fictitious tales” about their experience of the transfiguration of Jesus.
In Matthew 17:1-5 we read, “After six days Jesus took Peter, James, and John his brother, and led them up a high mountain by themselves. He was transfigured before them; his face shone like the sun and his clothes became white as light. And behold Moses and Elijah appeared to them...a bright cloud cast a shadow over them, then from the cloud came a voice.... ‘This is my beloved Son in whom I am well pleased.’”
This scripture passage is what Peter is referring to when he says, “We made known to you the power and coming of our Lord Jesus Christ... we had been eyewitnesses of his grandeur.” Peter had witnessed what we will all witness at the Second Coming of Christ. We will see Jesus not only in his human nature, but also in his divine nature. What an experience to look forward to!
When Peter says that, “we have the word of prophecy,” he is referring to the Old Testament Law and Prophets that foreshadowed Christ as the Messiah. The fact that he mentions Moses and Elijah is a big deal! In the Old Testament Moses represents the Law and Elijah the Prophets. At the transfiguration the old and the new are overlapping each other. It’s all coming together and starting to make sense!! (I wish I could insert an emoji of excitement here).
It’s extremely important to note the connection between old and new because Jesus tells us that he came not to abolish the LAW (old) but to FULLFILL it (new). Just like Jesus, Moses’ face glowed when he was conversing on Mount Sinai with God (Exodus 19). The cloud in Matthew seventeen represents the presence of God just like it did in the Old Testament. Jesus is the new Moses and Jesus is the fulfillment of the Law. The Old Testament and Prophets all pointing to HIM!
Finally, Peter exhorts us to be wise in attending to the Prophets. They are a lamp unto our feet in the present darkness of our world. They point us to the eternal promise of Home. Peter says that, “until the day dawns and the morning star rises in [our] hearts,” to continue to look to this lamp.
The magnificent days of Jesus will rival the morning star in brilliance. The soft glow of prophecy will be replaced by the full radiance of reality in Jesus.
If this isn’t worth waiting for, then what is? <3 God bless you <3