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2 CORINTHIANS CHAPTER 3

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1&2 Are we beginning to commend ourselves again? Or do we need, as some, letters of commendation to you or from you? 2 You are our letter, written in our hearts, known and read by all men; 

 

2Cor 3-1

(22l) Sin >> Pride glorifies self >> Seeking the glory of man

(84d) Thy kingdom come >> Words of your mouth >> Boasting >> It needs to be said and no one is saying it >> Boasting of my accomplishments in Christ – The Corinthians accused Paul (not face to face) of his tendency to brag. Throughout this epistles to them Paul concluded: ‘You are the cause of my bragging, for you will not admit to yourself or confess to anyone that I am your father in the Lord. I preached the gospel to you and that is how you got saved, and I have been teaching and ministering to you like a father tenderly cares for his children, but you are acting like spoiled brats. You show me no respect, no gratitude, no spiritual affection, and you don’t even feel obligated to help me materially in my ministry toward you.’ Paul was not looking for commendation from anybody, but when it’s missing, it becomes apparent; like parents and children around the dinner table when they sit for a meal together, if the children are not grateful for the food they receive, it causes a disconnect between them and their parents. The children see their parents doing nothing more than what they should, but they don’t see their place, that they should be grateful. For children to have this attitude is just as wrong as parents who don't feed their children.

(131k) Thy kingdom come >> Manifestations of faith >> Unity >> Working together for one cause – Notice the word “we”. Paul did not feel in any way alone in the Corinthians spiritual well-being, and he was not the only one hurt by the Corinthian’s immaturity, for there were others who were credited with their salvation and spiritual growth. There was a concerted effort by a whole team of people, consisting in part of Silvanus Timothy, Barnabas, Titus and Silas, and there were many others involved: helpers, messengers and fellow evangelists, who were all working toward the same end: bringing the gospel of Christ to the nations, especially to those who would receive it.

(169h) Works of the devil >> Manifestations of the devil >> Seeking the glory of man >> Loving the approval of men rather than the approval of God >> Love to be noticed by men – Essentially, the Corinthians charged Paul with loving the approval of men when they accused him of commending himself, but in fact they merely projected their own fetish for approval on Paul, fulfilling the principle at work coined in the adage, “It takes one to know one.” Paul confirmed this in Rom 2-1, “Therefore you have no excuse, everyone of you who passes judgment, for in that which you judge another, you condemn yourself; for you who judge practice the same things.” The Corinthians saw in Paul the faults that were in themselves, which blinded them to the gifts and blessing that Paul wanted to impart to them through Christ, and for this reason they could not receive them. He worked tirelessly to remove the dross from their eyes that they might see clearly into the vast treasures that lay at their feet.

KJV    NAS  /  Navigation Bar

3&4 being manifested that you are a letter of Christ, cared for by us, written not with ink but with the Spirit of the living God, not on tablets of stone but on tablets of human hearts. 4 Such confidence we have through Christ toward God.

 

2Cor 3,2-18

(205g) Salvation >> Salvation is based on God’s promises >> New covenant >> The new one is a better one – God has replaced the ink of His Old Testament with the Spirit of the living God, for He now writes his word in our heart (Heb 8,10-12). He spoke of writing on tablets of stone, referring to the Ten Commandments that He wrote to Moses on mount Sinai, which has been used over the centuries to represent Israel’s old covenant, though there were other features, such as temple worship, which was ensconced with endless laws and regulations, taking up dozens of pages of the Old Testament. Yet, it was all reduced to ten simple commandments. Obeying these commandments therefore was more important than performing the regulations of temple worship. All these duties of worship through the tabernacle were nothing more than symbols of what was to come, for Paul says that these very words are written in our hearts as the essence of the new covenant, meaning that God now dwells in our heart.

(230d) Kingdom of God >> God’s kingdom is a living organism >> Partaking of the power of God >> Partaking of the ministry of the Holy Spirit – The “letter” is the ministry of death, yet it had glory, and if the ministry of death had glory, how much more does the ministry of life have glory? Yet, the glory of God has gone missing in the Church. Paul uses many analogies of the old covenant temple to reveal the truths of the new covenant, such as the veil, which was a rug that hung behind the perpetual incense burner, representing prayer that marked the point of transition from the holy place to the Most Holy Place. This veil is removed when we believe in Jesus. The blood of a bull was required of the high priest, who brought it into the Most Holy Place in a golden bowl, giving him access only once a year, even then being a mere symbol of things to come. That time came 2000 years ago, and the offer of salvation through the blood of Christ is still standing, who approached the throne of God in heaven with His own blood shed for the sins of the world, so that we might enter the Most Holy Place and fellowship with God in the Spirit. In so doing we should come away with the Shekinah glory, as Moses who covered his face, so people wouldn't stare at his fading glory. With each of us uniting around Christ, combining the Holy Spirit with the word of God in prayer to yield the substance of the anointing, we could change the world. All it takes is a little faith and obedience, yet we can’t seem to find it in ourselves, because of our flesh that acts as the veil of the temple. We are addicted to our sinful nature, being unwilling to sacrifice it as our offering to God that would escort us into the Most Holy Place.

2Cor 3,2-11

(109d) Thy kingdom come >> Faith >> Revelations of the Holy Spirit >> Revelation of the true children of God -- These verses go with verses 15-18. Paul uses Moses as his standard, saying that if he descended from the mountain with his face shining with the glory of God, how much more should we of the new covenant glow from having spent time with God in the inner chambers of the Most Holy Place—our prayer closet? Not only should we have the glow of Moses, but we should surpass his glory and it should remain, since we have full access to His presence whenever we wish. This countenance on the faces of God’s people will become in the last days the mark that He will place on their foreheads who worship Him in Spirit and truth, according to Rev 14-1, “Then I looked, and there before me was the Lamb, standing on Mount Zion, and with him 144,000 who had his name and his Father's name written on their foreheads.” These Jewish witnesses will raise up the gentile church in the last days, and those who receive them and adhere to their doctrines and walk in their footsteps will inherit their mark. The mark of the beast will therefore counterfeit God's mark, for He intends to make a distinction between the righteous and the wicked in the last days, using the glory of God as a tool of discernment to discriminate between the faithful and faithless.

(111k) Thy kingdom come >> Faith >> Spirit and the word >> Living and active word of God – There is a relationship between the Holy Spirit and the word of God, who wants to dwell in us and be the primary influence in our lives. Consequently, the Church needs to rise above their book knowledge of the Bible, develop a spiritual understanding of God’s word and start seeking a practical application to Christ's teachings. If we can spiritually understand the word of God and unite around it, we will have something meaningful to share with others, but we cannot unite around a book. The Holy Spirit believes only one thing—Truth. If the Holy Spirit is not working in our lives, then we are still fleshly and know nothing of the Truth even if we have studied Scripture.

2Cor 3,2-4

(13d) Servant >> Serve the body >> Promoting its health >> Building up the body of Christ

(35j) Gift >> God gives Himself to us >> Gifts from the Holy Spirit >> Spiritual gifts >> Knowing the mind of God

(74b) Thy kingdom come >> The heart >> God wants a relationship with your heart -- These verses go with verses 14-16

(119e) Thy kingdom come >> Manifestations of faith >> Freedom >> Fences of freedom >> Freedom in Christ -- These verses go with verse 17

(130h) Thy kingdom come >> Manifestations of faith >> Unity >> Committed to caring for the needs of the body >> Commitment stimulates intimate bonding

(152d) Witness >> Validity of the Father >> Witnesses of the father >> Apostles >> Fruitful results prove apostleship

(155j) Witness >> Validity of the believer >> Witness of the believer >> The word of God bears witness of the believer

2Cor 3-2,3

(112d) Thy kingdom come >> Faith >> Light >> Jesus light in us overcomes darkness >> The light of His power -- These verses go with verses 7-13

(255a) Trinity >> Holy Spirit’s relationship between Father and Son >> God’s word is Spirit >> Spirit of the word >> Words of His Spirit are life – the Church is called primarily to manifest the word of God, especially in these last days. It’s what the Church has always been called to do since Christ has been raised from the dead. In that sense you could almost say that the Corinthian Church was one of Paul’s epistles as much as his letters he wrote to them, for they straightened out their act after he wrote to them the first time. For the last 2000 years God has called the Church throughout the world to manifest His word, but we have for the most part failed Him. However, in the last days God will call His Church to demonstrate the Truth, and He will not take no for an answer, or be refused or denied.

KJV    NAS  /  Navigation Bar

5 Not that we are adequate in ourselves to consider anything as coming from ourselves, but our adequacy is from God, 

 

2Cor 3,5-18

(132h) Temple >> Your body is the temple of God >> Holy Spirit is in God’s people >> Filled with the Spirit >> Filled to overflowing

(234c) Kingdom of God >> Pursuing the kingdom >> Seeking the glory of God >> Seeking the glory of His Spirit – Paul ends this chapter talking about the Shekinah glory that Moses emulated in the presence of God. Moses put a veil over his face after speaking face-to-face with God on Mount Sinai, and His Shekinah glory reflected an anointing that faded, but Paul insisted that the new covenant affords a similar glory that we do not veil but openly show to the world. We have access to His glorious presence as students of God's word and disciples of prayer. We let our light shine, as in the children’s song depicting Mat 5-15, “Nor does anyone light a lamp and put it under a basket, but on the lampstand, and it gives light to all who are in the house.” Moses’ glory faded, but our glory need not fade, because we are welcome into His presence as often as we desire, as we follow the Holy Spirit into the word of God and prayer. 

2Cor 3,5-12

(35b) Gift of God >> God is willing to Give >> He is generous with the Spirit of His Son

(118m) Thy kingdom come >> Manifestations of faith >> Freedom >> Law of the spirit >> Newness of the spirit transcends oldness of the letter – Before the new covenant man was required to fulfill God’s laws through his flesh, but Paul said that his adequacy as a Christian comes from God. He claimed that the person he had become since his conversion was the result of the Holy Spirit dwelling in him. In describing his adequacy, Paul compared the letter of the law with the truth of the Spirit and declared that the letter lacked the assistance we need to obey Christ, the term “letter” referring to the written word of God. Paul testifies about this saying, “the letter kills, but the Spirit gives life.” God has written His laws in our heart through the Spirit of the new covenant, who has now become our conscience. 

(205i) Salvation >> Salvation is based on God’s promises >> Faith versus works >> The faith of God versus the faith of men >> Faith is the work of God – What did he mean by the “letter”? On one level he meant the letter of the law, referring to the Old Testament, namely the Ten Commandments. On another level he had the entire Bible in mind, including the New Testament, even the very words he was writing to the Corinthians! Therefore, when he said, “The letter kills, but the Spirit gives life,” at the very core he was saying, 'If you don’t understand what I am saying by the Spirit, then you don't understand God.' This means that the Bible without the Holy Spirit can only condemn us, yet it seems that the letter is all the Church cares about these days. There is very little teaching about the Holy Spirit, and what little we hear is mostly skewed. We read our Bible and go to church, but when it comes to associating with the Holy Spirit, we excuse ourselves. Christians believe in Jesus well enough, we believe He died on the cross for our sins and rose from the dead and ascended to the father, and we even believe He sent the Holy Spirit, but when it comes to a personal relationship with Him, we fall silent. The Church today needs to graduate from the letter to the Spirit and let the new covenant teachings of Christ become our tutor to lead us to the Holy Spirit.

(254h) Trinity >> Holy Spirit’s relationship between Father and Son >> Jesus is equal with the Holy Spirit >> Holy Spirit is life >> Spirit of God is the life of Christ

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2Cor 3,5-9

(52b) Judgment >> Judging Church with world >> Law judges sin >> Law is hostile against us – Paul said that the letter of the law kills, “but the Spirit gives life.” We could go one step further and say that even the letter of the new covenant kills in contrast to the life of the Spirit. That is, not just the letter of the Old Testament kills, also the letter of the New Testament, but the Spirit gives life. This means that anybody who does not have the Spirit of God dwelling in him does not belong to Christ. We can study the New Testament till our teeth turn blue, but without the Holy Spirit dwelling in us, teaching us about the truth of God, the New Testament cannot help us anymore than the Old Testament. In fact, without the Holy Spirit our knowledge of the New Testament will increase our sin just like the law did to those who tried to be justified by it. The Bible teaches that the Holy Spirit is the grace of the new covenant, but if we never obey Him, our knowledge of God will drive us further from Him, for resisting the Holy Spirit is the most egregious sin of all. This has happened to many people who have studied the Bible, actually wanting to know the truth about God, yet refusing to obey Him. If we stop short of the grace of God and never receive His Spirit, every thought we have about God will become like death to us. Recognizing the deadness of our own heart, the fact that God does not reside there, the silence within us where the voice of the Holy Spirit should resound will drive us from the Scriptures.

2Cor 3-5,6

(13f) Servant >> Serve the body >> Promoting its health >> Servant is anointed – God does not send us out as sheep in the midst of wolves unprotected and without defense, but gives His anointing, which we use to both confound the enemy and build His church. Consider this equation: Christianity minus the anointing = the letter. The letter is just that, mere words. If that were all we had, our faith would not be worth believing, but the Spirit was given as the life of His word. We don't believe mere words but the Spirit of those words.

(77j) Thy kingdom come >> Tapping into the power of God through humility >> The humble realize the source of their power

(116h) Thy kingdom come >> Faith >> Working the grace of God >> Our adequacy is from God – Paul accomplished milestones for the Lord through the grace of God, so man is definitely involved in the His grace. God has made us servants of a new covenant, “not of the letter but of the Spirit, for the letter kills but the Spirit gives life.” The “letter” most succinctly refers to the Law of Moses. Paul goes into great detail in Romans about what the law was meant to do and what it was not meant to do. Through the book of Romans we realize that man distorted their understanding of God’s law to mean that if they followed it, they would find favor with God, and this was never true, not even in the days of Moses. We will break ourselves on the law if we continually violate its statutes, and we may well receive a blessing in this life if we continually observe its ordinances, but the Law's blessing cannot follow us into eternity. There is no eternal promise with the law, for it has no power to erase our sin; in fact, it does just the opposite: it increases our sin (Rom 5-20). The law gives no promise of eternal life to those who obey it; otherwise, what was the point of Jesus sacrificing His flesh for the sins of the world, bleeding to death and suffering such agony and horror, or the Father raising Him from the dead and placing Him at His right-hand? Jesus dying for our sins proves that the law cannot save us! Christ is selecting a people for Himself in those who believe in the blood of His cross for the forgiveness of sin, but the law promises none of these things.

(227h) Kingdom of God >> God’s kingdom is a living organism >> God working in you >> Depending on Jesus to impart His gifts into us >> He gives us what we give to each other

(231c) Kingdom of God >> God’s kingdom is a living organism >> God’s grace is the mystery of godliness >> God working in you is a mystery

2Cor 3-5

(53m) Paradox >> Opposites >> God is made strong in our weakness

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6-13 who also made us adequate as servants of a new covenant, not of the letter but of the Spirit; for the letter kills, but the Spirit gives life. 7 But if the ministry of death, in letters engraved on stones, came with glory, so that the sons of Israel could not look intently at the face of Moses because of the glory of his face, fading as it was, 8 how will the ministry of the Spirit fail to be even more with glory? 9 For if the ministry of condemnation has glory, much more does the ministry of righteousness abound in glory. 10 For indeed what had glory, in this case has no glory because of the glory that surpasses it. 11 For if that which fades away was with glory, much more that which remains is in glory. 12 Therefore having such a hope, we use great boldness in our speech, 13 and are not like Moses, who used to put a veil over his face so that the sons of Israel would not look intently at the end of what was fading away.

 

2Cor 3-6

(173l) Works of the devil >> The religion of witchcraft >> Man’s Religion >> Deeds that are not initiated by God >> Deeds that are not initiated by the Holy Spirit

2Cor 3,7-13

(112d) Thy kingdom come >> Faith >> Light >> Jesus light in us overcomes darkness >> The light of His power -- These verses go with verse 18

2Cor 3,7-11

(117k) Thy kingdom come >> Faith >> Eyes of your spirit >> Seeing through the eyes of your spirit >> Light illumines your spirit – Here is a question we should all ask ourselves: why isn’t the Church immersed in the glory of God? Paul is contrasting the old covenant with the new and concluded that the glory of the new covenant overshadows the glory of the old. It should be as though Moses’ face did not shine at all in light of the glory of the new covenant, except where is this glory in the saints, especially in these last days? God’s intension is that we should clothe ourselves with His unfading glory, so that everyone can see by our countenance that we belong to Him.

2Cor 3-9

(41h) Judgment >> Satan destroyed >> Be like Jesus >> Seek His righteousness

2Cor 3,10-12

(129b) Thy kingdom come >> Manifestations of faith >> Bearing the fruit of evangelism >> Spiritual fruit

2Cor 3-12

(85f) Thy kingdom come >> Words that are spoken in faith >> Powerful when spoken by the Spirit >> Spoken with authority – There are many people who believe in God for eternal life who are timid, not willing to share their faith with others, but Paul said, “with such a hope, we use great boldness in our speech.” Paul received a revelation from the Holy Spirit about the hope of eternal life, and this revelation caused him to use great boldness in his speech. No one could quiet him after Jesus revealed himself to Paul on the road to Damascus. It is unlikely that everybody would have responded to the heavenly vision the way Paul did, with such great zeal, suggesting that just because God reveals Himself doesn’t mean we would automatically do great things for Him, because our will is involved. Although Paul had no authority in the world, he had great authority in the Lord, which was based on the revelation he received and the faith that resulted from his obedience to that revelation. He spoke the oracle of God through an anointing that God had given him. The Spirit of God emanated from Paul through the words he spoke, so they were not just hearing the word of God; they were actually experiencing the power of God through Paul’s anointing. This anointing followed the word of God that Paul spoke into the ears of his listeners and followed those who believed, revealing Christ to those who obeyed the truth.

(122h) Boldness (Key verse)

(123a) Thy kingdom come >> Manifestations of faith >> Boldness to speak the word by the Spirit – Paul was a very devout man before He had his heavenly vision, no doubt being one reason God chose to reveal Himself to Paul in the first place, knowing that he would make full use of the revelation and commit himself entirely to the grace of God. He had been zealously living by his faith in Judaism prior to his visitation on the road to Damascus, and God knew he would be zealous for his faith in the gospel of Christ, so this boldness by which Paul spoke was a combination of his own zeal and the Lord’s zeal. One act of obedience to the Holy Spirit led to another, each time increasing Paul’s faith, which increased his hope, which increased his boldness to speak the word of God to anyone who would listen, which resulted in an upward spiral of faith and obedience that led to the known world hearing about Jesus.

2Cor 3,13-18 

(140a) Temple >> Temple made without hands >> Hiding place >> The doorway

2Cor 3-13

(118h) Thy kingdom come >> Faith >> Eyes of your spirit >> Giving God your attention >> Resolutely focus on the glory of God >> Focus on Jesus – We are under a better covenant than Moses, yet we don’t always see the improvements in these last days in people whose lives do no reflect the glory of God, because of gross infidelity, being more committed to the world than they are to the faith. It takes commitment to achieve and maintain a relationship with Christ the kind that Paul is describing here. If we had pastors in pulpits who had this kind of relationship with God, they would encourage others to seek the glory of God, but we are living in an age of apostasy when God has been replaced with dead religion. People go to church and believe the false doctrines of their choosing, and if they don’t like that church, they find another church with a different set of false doctrines, but where can we find a church that actually preaches and teaches the unadulterated word of God? It is less common than silver and more valuable than gold, yet the truth of God is easy to find as rocks on the ground. We take a piece of granite and spin it in our hand and then drop it, and this is what we do to the truth: we assess its value and then pitch it. The truth is this easy to find, yet we refuse to look for it, and most could not discern the truth if they held it in their hands, because their minds are dead to the truth. We need to repent of our unbelief and return to God, dedicating our lives to Him in ways that most would call fanatical. God doesn’t see us as fanatics when we serve Him with all our heart, though the world would label us as such, yet what do they know about the truth? We’re not fanatics; we just believe in Jesus and love our neighbor as ourselves and engender an anointing that shines for all to see.

KJV    NAS  /  Navigation Bar

14 But their minds were hardened; for until this very day at the reading of the old covenant the same veil remains unlifted, because it is removed in Christ.

 

2Cor 3,14-18

(3e) Responsibility >> To the Family >> Pattern your marriage after Christ and the Church – The veil is a very significant symbol in the Bible. It represents the transition of a number of things. In this case it represents the transition between virginity and knowing God. In this context knowing God refers to the consummation of marriage, which has a sexual connotation. In a regular wedding the man lifts the woman’s veil when it is time to kiss the bride. This public act denotes breaking the woman's hymen during the sexual consecration of the marriage that the couple will perform after the wedding ceremony. The Bible is using this tradition to symbolize what happens to a person who is born again; they experience God, not sexually, but spiritually. Spiritual intercourse is similar to sex in that the Holy Spirit inhabits the person's soul, mixing His Spirit with the spirit of the person, who becomes one with God. 

(231f) Kingdom of God >> God’s kingdom is a living organism >> Mystery of godliness >> Revelation of Jesus is the mystery of the kingdom >> Jesus reveals the mystery of the kingdom

2Cor 3,14-17

(118g) Thy kingdom come >> Faith >> Seeing through the eyes of your spirit >> Blind receive their sight 

2Cor 3,14-16

(70h) Authority >> Sin of familiarity >> Familiar with the truth (enemy of discernment) >> Familiar with Jesus in the Spirit – Paul went from showing that there is a veil in front of the Old Testament to showing that there is veil in front of Christ, who represents the Holy of Holies. If we don’t understand the old covenant temple worship, which was the cause of Israel crucifying their own Messiah, then we won’t understand the new covenant. Nobody believed that Jesus would come and die for the sins of the people, though the high priest actually predicted it shortly before He was crucified (Jn 11-49,50). Using hindsight, which is 2020, we can go back to the Old Testament and find the passages that spoke of Him, but before it happened nobody foresaw an entire 2000-year age of grace between them and the thousand-year reign of Christ for which they hoped. It wasn’t necessary to understand the Old Testament the way God intended it until Jesus came; all that was necessary was to obey the law in hope of obtaining God's righteousness, but they didn’t live by what the knew, and for that reason they didn’t understand the Old Testament even after Jesus made the supreme sacrifice that fulfilled the countless obligations of the Levitical Priesthood. They read the Old Testament time and again without ever understanding the Law's intent, and they practiced their religion of temple worship, mindlessly sacrificing farm animals; so when they read their ancient manuscripts, not knowing their Messiah would come to them incognito to show them what little they knew about Him, they inadvertently sacrifice Him on the altar of God’s predetermined plan of salvation. Now that the sacrifice has been made, and the new covenant has been inaugurated through the blood of Christ, the New Testament has been written, so now we can read what it says and understand what it means and be saved, but for so many people the veil still remains un-lifted. They go to church every week, sing their hymns, give their tithes, socialize with their friends, hear the sermon and go home, and it is so very familiar to them that it keeps them from understanding the truth. They practice their religion by rote, just like Israel did with their temple services, not thinking about what they were doing. Therefore, how is it that the religious establishment of our time will not suffer the same fate as Israel and miss the second coming of Christ? See also: Miss the second coming of Christ; 169a

(74b) Thy kingdom come >> The heart >> God wants a relationship with your heart -- These verses go with verses 2-4. Paul was talking about the Jewish people, referring to the veil of the temple that was placed over the doorway leading to the Most Holy Place. He was talking about the Jewish people who were fully dedicated to their religion, who would go through their litany of religious activities thinking that by them they would gain God's favor, but they didn't understand that Moses gave them temple services as a way of looking forward to their Messiah, who would fulfill the sacrifices they performed. Instead of trusting in their religion, they needed to trust in their God, but their religion became just another idol, showing how easy it is to commit idolatry. Whatever we say finds favor with God is our idol, and for this reason Christ is the only form of worship that God accepts, and Jesus pointed us to the Father, who is our ultimate object of worship. The fact that Jesus is an entity of God means we can worship Him without committing idolatry, and for this reason we worship the Father through Christ. God sees a huge difference between idol worship and a sincere faith in Him. Trusting Christ for our salvation and trusting our religion sounds like the same thing to many people, but to God they are opposites, the difference between a living relationship and a dead religion. God is not interested in any kind of representation of faith; He wants us to worship Him directly or not at all. If we can’t give God our hearts, there is nothing else He wants.

(79e) Thy kingdom come >> Renewing your mind >> If you don’t, you won’t know truth

(119k) Thy kingdom come >> Manifestations of faith >> Curse of sin is broken >> Curse of ignorance is broken – The Jews have rejected the gospel and continue to read the Old Testament from week to week, not knowing what it means. They have devised their own interpretation of the Scriptures and decided by their own authority what their Old Testament says and came to all the wrong conclusions. What does Christ do for His people to help them believe the truth according to Scripture? The Holy Spirit was the direct result of the cross. After Christ rose from the dead and ascended to the Father, He sent the Holy Spirit in His place, who comes as a helper to teach us about God’s word. One of His main purposes is to lead us into the knowledge of God through the Scriptures. When a Christian reads the Bible, the Holy Spirit is there to interpret it for him. Along with giving us a proper understanding of God’s word, the Holy Spirit burns His truth into us so we believe in Him by revelation. That is, He supercharges the truth that we believe, but those who reject Christ cannot receive the Spirit of God, and for this reason they do not know the Truth.

(157j) Witness >> Validity of the believer >> Evidence of being hell-bound >> Unable to know the truth

(169a) Works of the devil >> Manifestations of the devil >> The world is blind to God >> Blind to Jesus >> Blind to the glory of God in Christ – We need to become spiritual and stop sinning as Paul told the Corinthians in his first epistle (1Cor 15-34). God has called us to be the salt of the earth, saints in light, people in the world but not of the world, gifted to lead the nations into peace, but we refuse to do it, just like Israel refused to live up to their calling, and thus forfeited their ministry to the gentiles. To whom are we forfeiting our ministry? The gentiles have been running with the gospel ever since the resurrection of Christ, but in these last days we have dropped the ball. God is about to pick it up and put it back in the hands of the Jews, who will lead the gentile church into the greatest revival man has ever seen. Are you ready to join the spiritual revolution that is coming? God has every intension of severely judging the Church for its waywardness. For the true church their judgment will be the glory of God, but for the religious establishment who refuses to serve Him in Spirit and truth, when God comes and knocks on their door and calls them to shine for Him in this world, if they refuse, God will pass over them just like He did Israel. There will be another Passover in the last days, and if we do not prepare for it, He will pass over us. See also: Miss the second coming of Christ; 70h

(183h) Works of the devil >> The origin of lawlessness >> Spirit of Error (Anti-Christ / Anti-Semitism) >> Spirit of the broad road >> Spirit of unbelief

(184d) Works of the devil >> The origin of lawlessness >> Darkness >> God controls darkness >> God hides unbelief in darkness

(199i) Denying Christ >> Man chooses his own destiny apart from God >> Rejecting Christ >> The world rejects God >> World rejects God because it does not know Him

(207j) Salvation >> The salvation of God >> Salvation verses >> The generosity of God’s salvation >> Salvation is the gift of God – Notice the sequence of events that take place here: first the person turns to the Lord, and then the veil is lifted in that order. A person who believes in God and gets saved must perform an act of faith; he must trust God before it is revealed to him what he is doing. God made the first move when He sent His Son to die for the sins of the world, “that whoever believes in Him shall not perish, but have eternal life” (Jn 3-16). The process of salvation is like a game of checkers, and it is our move, and if we do, it will be His turn again, who will impart His Spirit in our heart to remove the veil. To believe in Him is to perform an act of trust, dedicating our life to Him. God knows when we are being honest with Him; He knows when we tell Him with a sincere heart that from this day forward our lives are reserved for His purposes in whatever He wants us to do, and when we make that decision, the veil is lifted, and we come to a revelation of Jesus Christ and begin to see things clearly. Suddenly He makes perfect sense to us; we realize we made the best decision of our lives. We come to an understanding that a transaction has just occurred: we have given God our heart, and He has given us His Spirit as a seal of our salvation, who will guide us through life and help us walk in Him.

(221h) Kingdom of God >> The elusive Kingdom of Heaven >> Kingdom hidden behind the veil from the world >> God hides His divinity from man’s corruption >> He hides behind the veil – The mind of old covenant Israel was hardened, for “at the reading of the old covenant the same veil remains un-lifted, because it is removed in Christ.” Without interpreting the old covenant through the new there is no understanding it, in that the new covenant is the fulfillment of the old. Since Israel has rejected Christ, it is impossible for them to properly understand the first covenant, let alone the second, suggesting that Israel is completely and utterly lost, and only God can heal their blindness.

(238b) Kingdom of God >> Pursuing the kingdom >> Transferring the kingdom >> The kingdom is transferred to the Church >> Born again >> Born of the Spirit by the will of man

2Cor 3-14,15

(203a) Denying Christ >> Running from God >> Wicked men cannot approach the throne of God >> God chases them away from His presence

 

KJV    NAS  /  Navigation Bar

15-17 But to this day whenever Moses is read, a veil lies over their heart; 16 but whenever a person 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 liberty.

 

2Cor 3,15-18

(109d) Thy kingdom come >> Faith >> Revelations of the Holy Spirit >> Revelation of the true children of God -- These verses go with verses 2-11

2Cor 3-16

(156h) Witness >> Validity of the believer >> Evidence of salvation >> Understanding wisdom is evidence of salvation – Unbelievers have a veil hanging over their hearts, just like the old covenant temple of worship had a veil spread across the opening of the Most Holy Place, so unbelievers cannot peer into Christianity and see the truth that is in Christ, until they make a commitment to follow Him. When our faith affects the physical realm and we believe in God through our human volition, showing evidence through obedience, God will send the Holy Spirit into our heart to live in us forever and we will be saved, and at that moment the veil will be lifted. We will then come to a revelation of Jesus Christ and realize that God really did send His Son to die for the sins of the world. It comes by revelation to each person who makes a commitment to Christ, but not to those who only want to believe in a set of doctrines. God is the judge; He will determine who enters His kingdom and who doesn’t; the Bible’s depiction of “belief” is obedience. Those who obey the Son have eternal life (Heb 5-9), and the veil will be lifted, and God instills His faith into His believers so they believe by a faith that is greater than themselves, and they have a Spirit dwelling in them that is greater than themselves, and they do works for God that are greater than themselves and endure circumstances that are greater than themselves. It is by the Holy Spirit who dwells in them, giving them the faith to believe in Jesus.

2Cor 3-17,18

(118l) Thy kingdom come >> Manifestations of faith >> Freedom >> Law of the spirit >> Spirit delivers you from the desire to sin – Jesus said in Jn 8-32, “You shall know the truth and the truth shall make you free” similar to the way Paul used the word “liberty” in this verse. What did he mean by liberty and what did Jesus mean by freedom? The Jews responded to Jesus denying they had ever been in bondage to anyone, but Jesus was talking about them being slaves of sin, and Paul was talking about liberty to live a righteous life. God has given us power to abstain from sin and thus conquer its addictions through the Holy Spirit, not through our own effort, for it is the deeds of the flesh we are trying to conquer. The flesh doesn’t want to die. The sinful nature is sown into our flesh that we are trying to surmount; it is what holds us in bondage to sin and poisons our faith. The Spirit of God dwells in us apart from the flesh that kills the deeds of the body, and our only input is to follow Him into victory. Our spirit that God has redeemed and our flesh that He has not redeemed are opposites, meaning there is a war raging inside us. The Holy Spirit provides us the liberty to become the children of God and to live as such. Paul said that this happens, “as from the Lord, the Spirit.” Remember that the centurion punctured Jesus' heart with a spear as He hung on the cross, and out gushed blood and water (Jn 19-34). Blood represented His life in the flesh, while the water mixed with blood represented the Holy Spirit that resulted from the cross (Jn 7,37-40). Just as Jesus was transformed from a physical man to one who now dwells in the Spirit, so we too are being transformed from a fleshly creature to one of a more spiritual nature, as we focus on Jesus and are elevated to greater levels of freedom.

2Cor 3-17

(119e) Thy kingdom come >> Manifestations of faith >> Freedom >> Fences of freedom >> Freedom in Christ -- This verse goes with verses 2-4

(254j) Trinity >> Holy Spirit’s relationship between Father and Son >> Jesus is equal with the Holy Spirit >> Salvation of Jesus’ Spirit

KJV    NAS  /  Navigation Bar

18 But we all, with unveiled face, beholding as in a mirror the glory of the Lord, are being transformed into the same image from glory to glory, just as from the Lord, the Spirit.

 

2Cor 3-18

(35h) Gift of God >> God gives Himself to us >> The anointing

(38e) Judgment >> Jesus defeated death (Satan) >> Resurrection anointing

(43c) Judgment >> Satan destroyed >> Conform to the character of Jesus’ image

(99n) Thy kingdom come >> Perseverance (Working to keep in motion) >> Persevere in faith – The Shekinah Glory on the people of God was Paul’s vision for the Church in the first century, though it was doubtful his vision was ever realized, and if it didn’t happen then, much less is it happening now. We don’t see people with the glory of God shining in them, because of sin that detracts from His glory, and from a lack of zeal and commitment to the word of God and prayer that bring the knowledge of God to light. His glory displayed on our countenance is the result of our spiritual understanding put into practice through faith. The word “faith” is often misused and misunderstood, especially when equating faith with “belief.” These are two different things. Belief refers to man's faith, while faith refers to what God believes. That is, “faith” comes from God, and it only believes the truth. Therefore, when we believe the truth, faith is able to grow, but when we believe something false, faith is stifled.

(103j) Thy kingdom come >> Purifying process >> God purifies His church >> We go through Jesus’ purifying process

(104j) Thy kingdom come >> Pure in heart shall see God >> Shall see Jesus >> We shall see His face

(108k) Thy kingdom come >> Faith >> Revelation of Jesus Christ >> Revelation of the glory of God – There are many cases in the Bible that speak of the new covenant being better than the old, and this is one of those verses. Usually it is embedded in a conversation about the law being inferior to the Spirit. Israel was steeped in the law, and God enacted His new covenant to deliver them from it. Moses went to the top of Mount Sinai to receive the Ten Commandments and returned with the glory of God shining on his face. His face shone in the writing of the law, which was a one-time event, but nobody shines while fulfilling the law, which is a life-long process. In contrast, God teaches us about His word, and He teaches us about the specific things He wants us to do, and if we do them, He can fill our lives with glory until it shows on our face that we are interacting with the God of creation. Moses had a one-time experience of God’s glory, but we can live a life of grace and glory!

(111i) Thy kingdom come >> Faith >> Spirit and the word >> Kingdom of God revealed >> Manifestation of truth – Moses put a veil over his face so the sons of Israel would not see the glory of God fading from his countenance; he wasn't ashamed of the glory of God; he was ashamed of it fading. God called him to Mount Sinai and gave him the law of commandments written on stone, and in the process Moses was close enough to God that His glory transferred to his countenance. Paul testifies in an earlier verse that Moses’ experience was something we can all duplicate, not just once, but often as we wish by seeking God in His word and in prayer, this being the benefit of the new covenant that Jesus bought for us with His own blood. 

(112d) Thy kingdom come >> Faith >> Light >> Jesus light in us overcomes darkness >> The light of His power -- This verse goes with verses 2&3

(118h) Thy kingdom come >> Faith >> Eyes of your spirit >> Giving God your attention >> Resolutely focus on the glory of God >> Focus on Jesus -- This verse goes with verse 13. We have access to the Holy Spirit who dwells in our heart, similar to the access Moses had with God. We could say that Moses was a prototype of Christianity. God ministered to him through the covenant He made with Abraham, but God ministers to us through the covenant He made with His Son. We enter His covenant with God when we believe in the sacrifice of His own body on the cross to cleanse us from all unrighteousness, and one of the benefits of that covenant is having direct access to the Holy Spirit. The covenant that God made with Abraham is similar to the covenant we have with Christ, in that God spoke to Abraham and he obeyed His voice. Jesus walked with God in the same way, and now God expects us to walk with Him in the same manner. God’s promise is that when we seek His face and find Him in prayer, it will change our lives. We need to seek God on a regular basis to give Him an opportunity to transform us from glory to glory and help us grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ.

(132e) Temple >> Your body is the temple of God >> Holy Spirit is in God’s people >> God gives His spirit as a pledge >> Spirit pledges the presence of God – Jesus went from a telluric man, clothed in human flesh to sending the Holy Spirit in His place after He ascended to heaven. This will happen to us one day after our natural death; we will go from an earthly nature of our flesh to a spiritual state in heaven. Likewise, the ultimate goal of every Christian should be to transcend our fleshly existence and strive for a more spiritual reality and come to a revelation of God's presence. To possess the Spirit of God is to possess the presence of God, for all Christians have the Holy Spirit dwelling in them. His presence is not externally as it was for Moses but internal; therefore, the difference between Moses and us is that Moses shone from the outside-in, whereas we shine for the inside-out.

(137g) Temple >> Building the temple (with hands) >> Maturity >> Maturing in Jesus is hard work >> Maturity is the process of growing

(155g) Witness >> Validity of the believer >> Witness of the believer >> Holy Spirit bears witness of the believer

(191a) Die to self (Process of substitution) >> Separation from the old man >> Baptism (New covenant sign of obedience) >> Immersed in His Spirit – Why did Moses put a veil over His face instead of proudly displaying the glory of God? Moses wasn’t ashamed; rather, it was the children of Israel who were ashamed of God’s glory. They saw Moses and realized this man was on a spiritual plateau far above them, a standard they could never achieve. The world today would be just as ashamed to see the glory of God on our faces, but we should not be ashamed of the glory of God. We all should have the glory of God emanating from our countenance, immersed in His presence. The glory of God is the new covenant sign of faith, just as circumcision was the sign of faith in the old covenant.

(208h) Salvation >> The salvation of God >> Personal relationship >> Being the friend of God >> Relationship with God by the Spirit

(213g) Sovereignty >> God is infinite >> Jesus owns you >> We are his instruments >> We are reflectors of His glory – We mirror a reflection of God's glory like the moon reflects the sun. This analogy is used in the book of Revelation to depict Satan (Rev 12-1). The moon reflects the sun; it doesn’t actually have a light of its own; therefore, the moon counterfeits the sun's light. The difference between Satan counterfeiting God’s light and we reflecting the glory of God is that Satan claims His light is his own, making it a false light, which means it is actually darkness, whereas we attribute our light to God. Claiming the light as his own was Satan’s first mistake at his fall, and then seeking to possess God’s throne clinched his fate (Isaiah 14,9-20). In heaven we won’t be reflectors of His glory but will have an internal glow that God will give us according to our faithfulness in this life as His representatives throughout creation, determining our rank in the hierarchy of His kingdom, similar to the angels.

(226j) Kingdom of God >> Illustrating the kingdom >> Rewards of heaven >> Levels of reward >> Rewarded by levels of glory in our spiritual bodies – In the life to come, the things God does in us will be accurately depicted on our spiritual bodies, becoming evident to all. Currently it is very difficult to assign a correct priority to the things that God is doing in us. For example, during testimonials people will speak of the great things God has done for them, and most of the time it sounds very hollow, unless it is something spectacular like healing or some other physical manifestation, then the audience claps, but if it is something that God is doing within a person, the room draws quiet, and on to the next testimony. We are not well adept at expressing the work of God in our hearts, but a day is coming when the the inner-workings of Christ will be apparent to all, fully manifested as with a neon light, and everybody within eyeshot will know everything about us. They will be able to see His handiwork within us.

(229h) Kingdom of God >> God’s kingdom is a living organism >> Kingdom grows by itself >> Kingdom assumes the mind of Christ >> Kingdom grows into the likeness of Christ

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