The term “tranfigured” is used 2 times in the NT of the KJV Bible…
It is translated from a Greek word made up of two parts:
1. “meta” – “with”, “among”, “amidst”, “from/to”
2. “morphoo” – means “to alter”, “to change”
We get the English word “metamorphosis” from this Greek word.
The idea is this… to be transfigured means to be changed in appearance from one form to another. Much like a caterpillar changes its appearance to that of a butterfly when it undergoes “metamorphosis”.
Here are a few samples of Biblical usage….
Both times the word “transfigured” is used it is speaking of the change in appearance of Christ on the mount…
“And after six days Jesus taketh Peter, James, and John his brother, and bringeth them up into an high mountain apart, And was TRANSFIGURED before them: and his face did shine as the sun, and his raiment was white as the light.” (Matthew 17:1-2)
“And after six days Jesus taketh [with him] Peter, and James, and John, and leadeth them up into an high mountain apart by themselves: and he was TRANSFIGURED before them. And his raiment became shining, exceeding white as snow; so as no fuller on earth can white them.” (Mark 9:2-3)
But the same Greek word is used in two other texts….
1. Here, it is translated by the word “transformed”. This text teaches us the need to change our appearance to the lost world around us. We do this by living holy lives separated to God’s use through a renovation of our mind and thought processes. By thinking differently about sin and Christ’s lordship we become living sacrifices for God’s glory and honor…
“I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, [which is] your reasonable service. And be not conformed to this world: but be ye TRANSFORMED by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what [is] that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God.” (Romans 12:1-2)
2. Here, it is translated “are changed”…
Once again holy living is being discussed. In this text we are being taught that, once saved, we are able to begin to understand and perceive the holiness of our Lord Jesus. As we behold His glory we will slowly be changed from sinful to righteous living. This takes place through the indwelling Spirit within us…“But we all, with open face beholding as in a glass the glory of the Lord, ARE CHANGED into the same image from glory to glory, [even] as by the Spirit of the Lord.” (2 Corinthians 3:18)