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from glory to glory

03-04-2014 - Posted by Andre Piet

images20 Paul asserts, in 2 Corinthians 3, that the old covenant was a ministry that began in glory. When Moses descended from the mountain with the tablets of stone in his hand and spoke to the people, his face gleamed. But when he finished with speaking to them, he put a covering on his face (Ex.34:33). Paul explains that Moses did this so that the sons of Israel would not focus on what would disappear. The administration of the stone tablets began in glory, but ended up as a “ministry of death” and “condemnation” (2Cor.3:7,9). The ministration of the life-giving Spirit (3:6, the new covenant) is of a totally different order. That ministry is “from glory to glory” (3:18). In Paul’s career, we see this beautifully demonstrated. He was called in a dazzling light from heaven, and then was taught in Arabia by the resurrected Christ (Gal.1:17; Acts 26:16). He became a preacher of the Evangel among the nations, which is amply documented in his epistles. In his letter to the Romans, he taught that believers had died and were risen with Christ (Rom.6:4). That’s glory. But at the end of his ministry, from out of prison, he taught that believers are even seated with Christ “among the celestials” (Eph.2:6; Col.3:3). This is even much more glorious! So, in truth: it goes from glory to glory (continiously)! The remarkable reality is that the glory of Paul’s ministry becomes the more radiant as Israel’s situation darkens. Paul writes his magnum opus from out of prison, just before the fall of Jerusalem. Where Israel’s sin increased, the grace for the nations became more than abundant (Rom.5:20; 11:11)!