d. Could not look: Since the veil hid the face of Moses, the children of Israel couldn’t see any of the glory from his face. Paul expresses this point well in Romans 7:5-6: For when we were in the flesh, the sinful passions which were aroused by the law were at work in our members to bear fruit to death. Aug 23, 2020. Whereupon entering a comparison between the ministers of the law and of the gospel. Scripture: 1 Timothy 1:8–11, 2 Corinthians 3:1–4:6. It is he who is all-sufficient who has made Paul sufficient for his task. Message. Click to enable/disable _gid - Google Analytics Cookie. Strength in weakness. Be ashamed of your folly in the presence of a great man who knew what he said, and who spoke under the direction of the Spirit of God, and wrote deliberately, ‘Not that we are sufficient of ourselves.’” (Spurgeon), iii. John Piper Jul 19, 2020 2.1K Shares Sermon. That is a perversion of true liberty, not a Spirit-led liberty. Written in our hearts. An epistle of Christ: Paul’s letter of recommendation has an author, Jesus Christ. But now we have been delivered from the law, having died to what we were held by, so that we should serve in the newness of the Spirit and not in the oldness of the letter. And so we are transfigured much like the Messiah, our lives gradually becoming brighter and more beautiful as God enters our lives and we become like him. It works from glory to glory. “Brethren, if Paul is not sufficient of himself, what are you and I? We have the Holy Spirit, who is the Lord. How do we get an unveiled face? And we have such trust through Christ toward God. Copyright © 1993, 2002, 2018 by Eugene H. Peterson, The Message (MSG), 2 Corinthians 3:3 in all English translations, Message Slimline Bible--soft leather-look, black/spring wildflowers. We should also consider what Paul is not saying. A mirror in the ancient world did not give nearly as good a reflection as our mirrors do today. God uses the new covenant to make us transformed people, not just nice people. Not everyone sees the truth when they look into the mirror. Clearly you are an epistle of Christ, ministered by us, written not with ink but by the Spirit of the living God, not on tablets of stone but on tablets of flesh, that is, of the heart. Because of this hope, Paul can use great boldness of speech. A Denver businessman called his mother from the office 15 times a day for reassurance that he did not look grotesque and spent hours in the bathroom stall with a pocket mirror trying to figure out a way to improve his appearance. The old covenant is passing away, but the new covenant remains. In the ancient world, as nowadays, sometimes written testimonials did not mean very much. The best analogy in today’s world might be a certificate of ordination. We use cookies to let us know when you visit our websites, how you interact with us, to enrich your user experience, and to customize your relationship with our website. Not that we are sufficient of ourselves: Paul doesn’t consider himself sufficient for the great task of changing lives for Jesus. Yet, it requires something: beholding. You are our epistle: Paul has a letter of recommendation, but it isn’t written on paper. 3:12-18 It is because we possess such a hope that we speak with such freedom. d. Into the same image: As we look into “God’s mirror,” we are changed into the same image of the Lord. No one comes away from one incredible time with the Lord perfectly transformed. It has been rightly said that it is more important to talk to God about men than it is to talk to men about God, but we can do both of these important works. This passage really falls into two parts. How much more dazzling, then, the Government of Living Spirit? Click to enable/disable Google Analytics tracking. 5 We wouldn't think of … The Spirit and the letter are not enemies, but friends. (b) It killed life. To report dead links, typos, or html errors or suggestions about making these resources more useful use our convenient. As a minister of the old covenant, Moses had to cover his face with a veil in order to protect the sinful Israelites from seeing the glory of God. We provide you with a list of stored cookies on your computer in our domain so you can check what we stored. The written document is a deadly thing; the Spirit is a life-giving power. iii. Copyright StatementThese files are public domain.Text Courtesy of BibleSupport.com. Neither do we need letters of endorsement, either to you or from you. Experts call it body dysmorphic disorder, or BDD. The Contemporary Parallel New Testament with KJV, NIV, NKJV, NASB, and more! In all probability these were emissaries of the Jews who had come to undo Paul's work and who had brought introductory letters from the Sanhedrin to accredit them. By registering for an account, you agree to Faithlife’s. Everything is out in the open with us. The Old Testament prophets looked forward to the New Covenant, when the law of God would be written in our hearts (Jeremiah 31:33), and said God would grant hearts of flesh to replace hearts of stone (Ezekiel 11:19 and 36:26). But when it comes from the operation of the Spirit in his heart, the very centre of his being has no other desire than to serve God, for then it is not law but love which binds him. Read more Paul himself sent letters of commendation on many occasions (Romans 16:1-2, 1 Corinthians 16:3, 16:10-11, 2 Corinthians 8:16-24). It did not and it could not last. Many people think that a certificate of ordination means that you have the credentials of ministry. Therefore, the contrast isn’t only between passing glory and enduring glory, but also between concealed glory and revealed glory. (a) It was a relationship of love. ©2018 David Guzik – No distribution beyond personal use without permission. There is so much packed into this glorious verse of Scripture that one could spend a lifetime looking as into a mirror, at the glory of the Lord and that would suffice. Message. Finding the new version too difficult to understand? 4 We couldn't be more sure of ourselves in this - that you, written by Christ himself for God, are our letter of recommendation. (d) It therefore not only told a man what to do but gave him the strength to do it. c. So that the children of Israel could not look steadily at the end of what was passing away: From reading the account in Exodus 34:29-35, one might first get the impression that Moses wore a veil after his meetings with God so that the people wouldn’t be afraid to come near him; the veil was to protect them from seeing the shining face of Moses. Moses took the book of the covenant and read it to the people and they agreed to it. Every Christian, whether he likes it or not, is an advertisement for Christianity. If the Government of Condemnation was impressive, how about this Government of Affirmation? g. By the Spirit of the Lord: With these last words, Paul emphasizes two things. (b) They may be veiled by wishful-thinking. Neither do we need letters of endorsement, either to you or from you. Whenever, though, they turn to face God as Moses did, God removes the veil and there they are—face-to-face! If that makeshift arrangement impressed us, how much more this brightly shining government installed for eternity? Paul is glad to hear that the church in Corinth has heeded his advice. Nevertheless when one turns to the Lord, the veil is taken away. No, indeed, I could not control the story; it wrote itself. 3 Christ himself wrote it - not with ink, but with God's living Spirit; not chiseled into stone, but carved into human lives - and we publish it. Behind this passage lies the thought of a custom which was common in the ancient world, that of sending letters of commendation with a person.

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