God the Father did not say a lot in the Bible, but when He did speak you can guarantee that what He said was important.
One such time was during the transfiguration of Jesus when Peter, James, and John went up the mountain with Jesus. The Father made the following comments after Peter suggested making booths for Jesus, Moses, and Elijah.
4 And Peter said to Jesus, "Lord, it is well that we are here; if you wish, I will make three booths here, one for you and one for Moses and one for Eli'jah." 5 He was still speaking, when lo, a bright cloud overshadowed them, and a voice from the cloud said, "This is my beloved Son, with whom I am well pleased; listen to him." (Matthew chapter 17, verses 4 and 5)
Who should you listen to?
In those few words of the Father there is a powerful message.
Peter was treating Jesus, Moses, and Elijah as equals. He wanted to make three booths for them as if they were all equal to one another.
But the Father intervened to show Peter and the other where the priority should be placed. He said, “Listen to Him,” that is, listen to Jesus. He did not say listen to THEM, but just listen to Him.
Dead to the law
The message of the Father was instructing the disciples to put their focus on Jesus and to listen to His words.
Moses represented the law. He was the law giver to Israel and the Ten Commandments were given to man through Moses.
Yes, the law was the word of God, but through Jesus we have died to from the law. Paul shows us this in these words.
“Likewise, my brethren, you have died to the law through the body of Christ” (Romans chapter 7, verse 4)
So, if we have died to the law, where should our focus be? Should we focus on something that is dead to us or should we focus on the one who gives us life?
What about the prophets?
Just as Moses represents the law in the transfiguration, Elijah represents the prophets.
There are many things written in the prophetic books of the Old Testament. The prophets were guides to Israel trying to pull them back onto the paths of righteousness when they constantly disobeyed and walked away from God’s way.
There were also many words spoken about the coming Messiah who would restore all things and make things right.
The prophets pointed to the time of Christ. So now that He has come it is clear that we should focus on the teachings and the words of the one whom they were pointing to rather than looking for someone who is already here.
The Jews in Jesus time, and even up until today missed that point and they missed the coming of their Messiah. They are still looking for Him not realising He came two thousand years ago.
That is why they are still bound up in following the law and the prophets, or Moses and Elijah, using the transfiguration analogy.
Focus on Jesus
But God the Father gives us a direct instruction through His brief conversation with Peter.
“Listen to Him.” God the Father was telling the disciples, and through them, the rest of the world, to listen to Jesus. The Messiah had arrived who was going to make all things new and bring the way of truth and life to the world, so listen to what He had to say.
There is great wisdom in the law and many insights in the works of the prophets, but if you want life and truth, don’t go to them. Go to Jesus. Go to the words of Jesus for He alone is the Way, the Truth, and the Life.
A New Creation
It is through Jesus that we are born again as new creations. It is through Jesus that our sins have been taken away and we have died to the law. It is through Jesus that we stand righteous before God. And it is through Jesus that we receive the Holy Spirit.
The work of the Holy Spirit is to transform us into the image of Jesus Christ, who is the image of the Father and is perfect.
And we too MUST be perfect if we are to live with the Son and the Father in their eternal kingdom. As the scripture says:
“You, therefore, must be perfect, as your heavenly Father is perfect.” (Matthew chapter 5, verse 48)
There is perfection in no-one else other than Jesus. There is salvation in no other name given on earth than the name of Jesus.
“And there is salvation in no one else, for there is no other name under heaven given among men by which we must be saved.” (Acts chapter 4, verse 12)
That is why the Father said, “Listen to Him.”
He wants us to have all of the blessings of Jesus and to come to Him to receive all that the Father has promised those who will seek Him. And we can only receive His blessings if we forsake all other teachings and focus on the truth of the words of Jesus Christ.
And now more than ever we need to “Listen to Him.”
Since retiring from work, John Lemmon now spends his time teaching, preaching and writing about the word of God, online and offline, answering God's call on him to “Speak to my people.” You can connect with John on Twitter (@JohnBLemmon) or on his website: freegiftfromgod.com/ or listen to his podcast on iTunes: https://itunes.apple.com/au/podcast/the-free-gift-from-god-podcast/id1440682375