When he took the three disciples
To the mountainside to pray,
His countenance was modified, his clothing was aflame.
Two men appeared: Moses and Elijah came;
They were at his side.
The prophecy, the legislation spoke of whenever he would die.

Then there came a word
Of what he should accomplish on the day.
Then Peter spoke, to make of them a tabernacle place.
A cloud appeared in glory as an accolade.
They fell on the ground.
A voice arrived, the voice of God,
The face of God, covered in a cloud.

What he said to them,
The voice of God: the most beloved son.
Consider what he says to you, consider what's to come.
The prophecy was put to death,
Was put to death, and so will the Son.
And keep your word, disguise the vision 'till the time has come.

Lost in the cloud, a voice. Have no fear! We draw near!
Lost in the cloud, a sign. Son of man! Turn your ear.
Lost in the cloud, a voice. Lamb of God! We draw near!
Lost in the cloud, a sign. Son of man! Son of God!

Lyrics submitted by EvilPopkin

"The Transfiguration" as written by Sufjan Stevens

Lyrics © BMG Rights Management

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The Transfiguration song meanings
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  • +2
    General CommentI never thought that I would enjoy songs about religion, but Sufjan isn't cheesy or preachy about it at all.

    I'm a hardcore atheist but still love this song.
    proposalson April 10, 2006   Link
  • +2
    General CommentI absolutely adore this song.
    Being a christian I find this song fabulous.
    UcBravoon June 29, 2009   Link
  • +1
    General CommentSufjan makes religion fun. His well-informed lyrics and nice, um, banjo-ing really make this track solid.
    stopthebombon February 20, 2006   Link
  • +1
    Song Meaning"Two men appeared; Moses and Elijah came
    They were at his side
    The prophecy, the legislation spoke of when-EVER he would die"

    Moses and Elijah represent the "legislation" or Law (Torah) and the "prophecy" or Prophets (Nevi'im), respectively. These writings foretold the coming of our Messiah (Mashiach) and His ultimate sacrifice (which is once and for-EVER).


    funkydon June 06, 2010   Link
  • +1
    General CommentThis song is the first I ever heard in 08. Loved him ever since.
    epilepticteenon November 04, 2010   Link
  • 0
    General CommentI absolutely love this song. It's spiritual, but who cares? The harmonies in the last two and a half minutes are just majestic. Close your eyes and you will feel something inside you light up. A song to love for a lifetime (and then some).
    n4398734on January 17, 2005   Link
  • 0
    General CommentGaw, this is a good song indeed. It's based on the very passage in the Bible about the Transfiguration. There are 3, but the closest one to the song is Luke 9:28-36. What a glorious and unabashed ending chorus! Can you imagine Sufjan's songs being sung and performed in churches today? They definitely put me in a more reverent and meditative mood than any contemporary praise song out there..

    Luke 9:28-36
    The Transfiguration

    28 About eight days after Jesus said this, he took Peter, John and James with him and went up onto a mountain to pray. 29 As he was praying, the appearance of his face changed, and his clothes became as bright as a flash of lightning. 30 Two men, Moses and Elijah, 31 appeared in glorious splendor, talking with Jesus. They spoke about his departure, which he was about to bring to fulfillment at Jerusalem. 32 Peter and his companions were very sleepy, but when they became fully awake, they saw his glory and the two men standing with him. 33 As the men were leaving Jesus, Peter said to him, “Master, it is good for us to be here. Let us put up three shelters–one for you, one for Moses and one for Elijah.” (He did not know what he was saying.)

    34 While he was speaking, a cloud appeared and enveloped them, and they were afraid as they entered the cloud. 35 A voice came from the cloud, saying, “This is my Son, whom I have chosen; listen to him.” 36 When the voice had spoken, they found that Jesus was alone. The disciples kept this to themselves, and told no one at that time what they had seen.
    beulahrawkon March 17, 2005   Link
  • 0
    General Commentthe greatest song on "seven swans." i didn't know he was religious.. i'm pretty happy to find it out reading on here. he has a way of lighting everything up.


    am i the only person who hears both "chicago" and "the predatory wasp of the palisades is out to get us!" in the chorus of this song? i might just be crazy, but i hear it every time i listen to this song.
    fromthehouseoflordson December 17, 2005   Link
  • 0
    General CommentI agree, i think we should be singing Sufjan's songs in church, they are so honest. I also hear the Chicago and the Predatory Wasp. I think he likes to use similar melodies and time signitures in a lot of his songs.
    Miss Miseryon March 01, 2006   Link
  • 0
    General Commenti only heard chicago but now that i listen to it more i hear preadtory wasp too. I think its weird that Illinois comes out later than this album and he takes two tunes from one song and makes two songs on Illinois.

    That might sound really weird but im bad at puttin my thoughts in writing. it sounds right to me
    nashers13on April 15, 2006   Link

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