GLORY INTO GLORY
Holy Spirit, you were there at creation, bringing order out of nothing. I pray that you will bring order into my life, and into our broken world.
Read 2 CORINTHIANS 3:7-18
The Greater Glory of the New Covenant
7 Now if the ministry that brought death, which was engraved in letters on stone, came with glory, so that the Israelites could not look steadily at the face of Moses because of its glory, transitory though it was, 8 will not the ministry of the Spirit be even more glorious? 9 If the ministry that brought condemnation was glorious, how much more glorious is the ministry that brings righteousness! 10 For what was glorious has no glory now in comparison with the surpassing glory. 11 And if what was transitory came with glory, how much greater is the glory of that which lasts!
12 Therefore, since we have such a hope, we are very bold. 13 We are not like Moses, who would put a veil over his face to prevent the Israelites from seeing the end of what was passing away. 14 But their minds were made dull, for to this day the same veil remains when the old covenant is read. It has not been removed, because only in Christ is it taken away. 15 Even to this day when Moses is read, a veil covers their hearts. 16 But whenever anyone turns to the Lord, the veil is taken away. 17 Now the Lord is the Spirit, and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is freedom. 18 And we all, who with unveiled faces contemplate[a] the Lord’s glory, are being transformed into his image with ever-increasing glory, which comes from the Lord, who is the Spirit.
- 2 Corinthians 3:18 Or reflect
New International Version (NIV)Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV® Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.
ReflectBefore you read today, glance in the mirror. What sort of face do you see? On this Pentecost Sunday, be ready for transformation.
As I begin to write this note I’m seized with mild panic. These verses are so rich, so deep, so glorious. Where to begin?
Glory, repeated 12 times, seems the obvious place. Glory is the self-revelation of God in all his brilliant splendor (Luke 9:29) and majestic power (Romans 6:4). That glory, veiled under Moses’ ministry, now under the new covenant (v 6), shines out in the face of Jesus. But here’s the thing. The glory of God on the face of Jesus is reflected on the faces of his disciples. You and me! Really? I don’t know about you, but I have a long way to go.
But mercifully this transformation is a lifetime process. Day by day, inch by inch, the glory spreads as we turn our faces to the Son. And this is not a private affair. We do it together as we see on the face of the person next to us in church a glimpse of God’s glory (v 18). It takes time and we must be purposeful.
In the story of the transfiguration the disciples were asleep, and it was only when they woke up that they saw the glory (Luke 9:32). Rather more prosaically, my son says to me: ‘Dad, if you snooze you lose.’
Have another look in the mirror. Where do you need more of the transforming light of God’s Spirit shining through you?
Holy Spirit, I release you anew in my life. Continue your work of making me more like Jesus.
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