Greek Study Mark 9:2-9
v2 μετα ημερας εξ "after six days" - This unusual time signature serves to link the transfiguration to the preceding episode.
παραλαμβανει (παραλαμβανω) pres. "took" - takes. Historic present, serving to introduce the next step in the narrative.
αναφερει (αναφερω) pres. "led [them] up" Historic present.
εις ορος υψηλον "a high mountain" Obvious Sinai imagery. They move up to meet with the divine in a place close to heaven, a "suburb" if you will.
κατ ιδιαν μονους "where they were all alone" - privately, apart, by themselves alone. "Where they could be alone", CEV.
μετεμορφωθη (μεταμορφοω) aor. pas. "there he was transfigured" - transformed, visibly changed, a divine passive, God does the transfiguring. It is possible that it is just Jesus' clothing that changes in appearance, although it is more likely the whole of Jesus' person. It is not necessarily a change in form, but in appearance.
εμπροσθεν "before" - before, in front of; local/spacial.
v3 στιλβοντα (στιλβω) pres. part. "dazzling white" - [became] glittering, shining, gleaming, glistening. The word is used of a highly polished surface. Commentators tend to see the dazzling presence of Jesus in terms of a divine theophany.
λιαν "whiter" - exceedingly, intensely [white]. "His cloths brightly glistened."
γναφευς (υς εως) a bleacher a person whose trade is to bleach cloth with nitrium.
λευκαναι (λευκαινω) aor. inf. "[could] bleach" infinitive is complementary.
v4 ωφθη (οραω) aor. pas. + dat. of pers. "appeared" this verb, "look at, see" takes the sense "appeared" in the passive; so a supernatural appearing.
αυτοις "before them" – a dative of direct object after the passive verb "appeared".
συν "with [Elijah and Moses]" association. It is interesting that Elijah is mentioned first, given that the situation is Mosaic, and Elijah is "with" Moses, as if Elijah is merely “tagging along”.
ησαν συλλαλουντες (συλλαλεω) pres. part. "who were talking with" – the imperfect verb to-be with the present participle forms a periphrastic imperfect; a construction that heightens aspect (here the duration) so idiomatically "had a long discussion with".
v5 αποκριθεις (αποκρινομαι) aor. pas. part. having answered [said]. Attendant circumstance participle, redundant. Semitic form used to continue a discourse.
Ραββι teacher. Vocative - an inappropriate description of Jesus, yet, given the circumstances, if the lesson is "listen to him", then very appropriate.
ειναι (ειμι) inf. "to be" infinitive of the verb forms a substantive infinitival phrase subject of εστιν; so "to be here is good.
ποιησωμεν (ποιεω) aor. subj. "let us put up [make] a hortatory subjunctive. Peter's suggestion is not absurd, given that his intention is to keep the discussion going. There would be much to learn from listening.
τρεις σκηνας (η) "three shelters" - tents, booths, tabernacles to protect the great-ones from the misty cloud that was descending on them. Another possible Exodus allusion.
v6 γαρ ου ηδει (οιδα) pluperf. "for he did not know" - he had not known. "The rare pluperfect form grammaticalizes remoteness".
αποκριθη (αποκρινομαι) aor. pas. subj. "[what] to say" - [what] he should answer.
v7 νεφελη (η) "a cloud" - a sign of God's presence, his shekinah glory – a borrowed word from the Hebrew..
επισκιαζουσα (επισκιαζω) aor. part. "[appeared] and enveloped" - [there came/appeared a cloud] overshadowing, covering, enveloping - expressing the sense of the cloud coming upon the disciples and enveloping them.
ουτος εστιν ο υιος μου "this is my Son" - a repeat of 1:11, although here God's words are for the disciples, not Jesus, i.e. the messianic secret is coming out into the open.
ο αγαπητος adj. "whom I love" Given the Hebrew background to this word, the sense is "one and only" or "unique". It is commonly understood in a filial sense, expressing a divine union between the Father and Son
ακουετε (ακουω) pres. imp. "listen" This divine imperative is the central element in the episode. We are to carefully note the message of Jesus, the Moses/Elijah prophet messiah. The content message is contained in the previous episode, 8:31-38: the cross and empty tomb.
v8 εξαπινα adv. "suddenly" – unexpectedly- a similar sense to Mark's commonly used "immediately" referring to an instantaneous change in circumstances, an immediate return to normality.
περιβλεψαμενοι (περιβλεπω) aor. mid. part. "when they looked around" The participle is adverbial or possibly expressing the action of the subject, "the disciples suddenly looked around." "Suddenly, on looking around", Goodspeed.
ειδον (οραω) aor. "they [no longer] saw" - indicating the transfiguration was no vision.
v9 καταβαινοντων (καταβαινω) pres. part. "as [they] were coming down" - [they] were coming down. The genitive absolute participle forms a temporal clause, as NIV.
διεστειλατο (διαστελλω) aor. "Jesus gave [them] orders" - he gave orders, commanded, instructed. Used of a "strict instruction."
αυτοις dat. pro. "them" - to them. Dative of indirect object.
διηγησωνται (διηγεομαι) aor. subj. "[not] to tell" - they should tell. The need to maintain the "messianic secret" obviously applies to the transfiguration as it does for Jesus' miracles.
μηδενι dat. adj. "anyone" - no one. Dative of indirect object.
ει μη- except.
οταν + subj. "until" - when [....... should arise].
αναστη (ανιστημι) aor. subj. "had risen" - should arise. Glory is assured for the Son of Man, but only after the ignominy of his execution as a common criminal. The transfiguration points to that glory, but is also, in itself, a prolepsis of the resurrection, a present momentary representation of a glorious future event.