Wednesday, November 04, 2009
2 Corinthians 3
1Are we beginning to commend ourselves again? Or do we need, like some people, letters of recommendation to you or from you? 2You yourselves are our letter, written on our hearts, known and read by everybody. 3You show that you are a letter from Christ, the result of our ministry, written not with ink but with the Spirit of the living God, not on tablets of stone but on tablets of human hearts.
4Such confidence as this is ours through Christ before God. 5Not that we are competent in ourselves to claim anything for ourselves, but our competence comes from God. 6He has made us competent as ministers of a new covenant—not of the letter but of the Spirit; for the letter kills, but the Spirit gives life.
The Glory of the New Covenant
7Now 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, fading though it was, 8will not the ministry of the Spirit be even more glorious? 9If the ministry that condemns men is glorious, how much more glorious is the ministry that brings righteousness! 10For what was glorious has no glory now in comparison with the surpassing glory. 11And if what was fading away came with glory, how much greater is the glory of that which lasts!
12Therefore, since we have such a hope, we are very bold. 13We are not like Moses, who would put a veil over his face to keep the Israelites from gazing at it while the radiance was fading away. 14But 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. 15Even to this day when Moses is read, a veil covers their hearts. 16But whenever anyone turns to the Lord, the veil is taken away. 17Now the Lord is the Spirit, and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is freedom. 18And we, who with unveiled faces all reflect[a] the Lord's glory, are being transformed into his likeness with ever-increasing glory, which comes from the Lord, who is the Spirit.
My words alone etched here do not save me or make me righteous or absolve all my sins. Only the Spirit of the Living God through Christ gives me the Words that heal, save, redeem. My words alone will not save anyone else – may not even be read by anyone else. Only through the living of my life through Christ will He be etched on other hearts. Through the Spirit, my words and my life may mean something for His Kingdom, but without His Spirit they are empty and meaningless. Meaningless meanderings of a muddled mind. But thanks be to God who takes away the veil, revealing His full glory to our hearts through the Spirit, so that we can see Him fully, with clarity, and live in complete freedom to be continually transformed into his likeness. Ever-increasing glory. His glory that we once could only behold through a veil while it was fading away, is now being fully revealed to us in increasing measure and transforming us into its likeness. Amazing. Thank You, Father. I am unworthy of this gift. Through Christ I am made worthy. I choose to live in the wonder of this gift today. Through Your Spirit I fully experience Your glory and therefore have an impact on others that is worth something. Without You I have nothing of value, except my decaying body that You created. But without Your indwelling, it will surely die and vanish forever. Lasting significance comes only from You. Meaning comes only from Your Truth.
If I fail to record the activity of the Spirit of God working in my life, all my writing is in vain. This blog means nothing to anyone if it is not about God -- His activity in me, through me, around me and in spite of me. My words alone have no power, no inspiration, no significance -- just as the Law given to Moses only served to condemn us and reveal our depravity, our desparate need for salvation. Christ's redemption is the only remedy for our utter depravity -- He is the fulfillment of the Law and it's requirements. Only through His Spirit living in me do I have any hope, any power, any significance to record. If I fail to share this hope, power and redemption with You through my words, I have wasted my time, your time, my calling. I endeavor to share with you only His activity in my life. Otherwise I am as a noisy gong or clanging cymbal and my words mean nothing. (1 Cor. 13:1-2) I love and appreciate God too much to waste His gifts and calling. I love and appreciate you too much to waste your time and your life.