2 Corinthians 3:18 - What We Behold - - - We Become!
2 Corinthians 3:18 - What We Behold - - - We Become!
2 Corinthians 3:18 (KJV) But we all, with open face beholding as
in a glass the glory of the Lord, are changed into the same image
from glory to glory, even as by the Spirit of the Lord.
2 Corinthians 3:18 (TEV) All of us, then, reflect the glory of
the Lord with uncovered faces; and that same glory, coming from the
Lord, who is the Spirit, transforms us into his likeness in an ever
greater degree of glory.
2 Corinthians 3:18 (CWR) Our faces are no longer covered, and as
we look at the glory of the Lord, we're changed. We reflect more
and more of His image by the power of the Spirit working on our
Glory of the New Covenant; 2 Corinthians 3:7-18. [Remnant SOP SB]
INTRODUCTION AND OVERVIEW
Paul recalled the stone tablets on which God had written the
old covenant. "The old written covenant ends in death," which means
that trying to be saved by keeping the Old Testament laws is a misuse
of its purpose (2 Corinthians 3: 6). The people were not made right
with God by keeping God's law. They were made right by trusting him
to shape them through it - like a tool.
With the new covenant, the Holy Spirit gives new life to all
who believe in Christ. He is working from within, unlike the old
covenant. This is what God promised. "I will put my instructions deep
within them, and I will write them on their hearts" (Jeremiah 31:33).
"I will take away their stony, stubborn heart and give them a
tender, responsive heart" (Ezekiel 11:19).
Today the old covenant and the new covenant work together.
God's law in the Old Testament still points out sin and shows us what
obedience should involve, while God's Spirit works within us "giving you
the desire and the power to do what pleases him." (Philippians
Don't discard God's laws. They are the revelation of God. But
live by God's Spirit, trusting him by responding to his guidance.
[One Year NLT SB re 2 Cor. 3:15-18]
Moses' face shone with the glory of God, so he covered it
with a veil because the people seemed to have a limited capacity for
glory. They knew Moses spoke face-to-face with God, and they saw the
glow on him; Paul says the veil kept them from seeing the glory,
which was fading away. But in making us alive in Christ and giving us
open entry to God's throne, there is no need for veils and glory
doesn't fade. The Presence is no longer designated for a holy place in a
tabernacle. It's a public-access experience.
Paul says that now that the veil has been removed, we can be
mirrors that reflect the Lord's glory. In the process, as His Spirit
works in us, we grow to be more and more like Him. As we gaze at Him,
His Presence is not just with us but in us. It becomes more and more
We gaze at Jesus, His Spirit works within us, we reflect His
glory, and we become more like Him. According to Scripture, that's the
process that causes real transformation. But many Christians miss the
first step - being face-to-face with Him, being in His Presence - and
then are left to attempt transformation by self-effort or a
complicated series of spiritual principles. Scripture once presented Moses
as a singular exception; the New Testament treats him as a
prototype for any Christian's experience. Don't assume God wants less than
that. Seek that experience from Him as though there's no limit to the
glory He will show you - because, in fact, there isn't.
Jesus, please give me 20/20 vision in gazing at You. Let me
have unveiled, face-to-face encounters. I know there are no limits in
knowing You and being known by You. I want to reflect as much of Your
glory as You will allow. [The One Year Experiencing God's Presence
Devotional by Chris Tiegreen]
A deep sense of awe came over them all, and the apostles
performed many miraculous signs and wonders. Acts 2:43
The Presence of God has consequences. In this case, there
were many: a deep sense of awe, miracles, sacrificial generosity,
worship and praise, unity, joy, favor, and growth. When divine power is
obvious - when the weight of glory fills a room, a building, or a city -
the attributes of that power begin to manifest themselves. Hearts
fall in line with the character of the God they experience.
That's one reason it's so important to experience God rather
than just know about Him or intellectually understand His truth. We
can read His Word and try to develop habits from what we've learned,
but that's an arduous process filled with fits and starts and many
failures, and it works from the outside inward - eventually. But an
encounter with God - or even just an increased awareness of His Presence -
tends to impart His qualities to us. We begin to become like Him.
This happens when we're around people we admire too. We
subconsciously begin to develop their attitudes, emulate their gestures and
expressions, and see from their perspectives. We grow into the models of
thought and behavior set before us. At a much more intense level, we
grow into the character of God when we spend time with Him - not by
effort but by impartation. We become what we behold.
Be intentional about what you behold - or rather whom you
behold. Seek such a profound awareness of God's Presence that it
provokes awe in you. Learn how to look at His works with wonder. Believe
what Scripture says about Him, and notice the ways He graces your
life. You will begin to incorporate His attributes into your own
personality. And marvelous things may begin to happen.
Spirit, I want to experience the real You - not a false image
or perception, but the reality of Your Presence. May Your character
and Your ways "rub off" on me so that my heart can become like
Yours. [The One Year Experiencing God's Presence Devotional by Chris
Tiegreen re Acts 2:43]
What are the benefits of Scripture meditation? They are
beyond telling. Here, however, are just some of the benefits the Bible
offers to those of us who will take the time to meditate: (1) success -
Joshua 1:8, (2) understanding - Psalm 119:99, (3) the ability to wisely
discern between right and wrong - Psalm 119:11.
But the one that is most pivotal occurs in Psalm l -
spiritual freshness. This psalm makes it clear that one of the secrets of
staying spiritually fresh is to send one's roots down into the Word of
God by meditation.
In my teens I knew a man, a miner by trade, whose spiritual
freshness and radiance were responsible for turning many people to Jesus
Christ. Just before he died, and in the company of several other
Christians, I asked him: "What is the secret of your spiritual freshness?
You always seem to be on top of things, always radiant. Tell me how
you maintain this inner poise and power." He replied in one word -
I pressed him for some further thoughts on the subject. This
is not a verbatim quotation, but as far as I can remember, this is
what he said: "Meditation is letting your heart become the workshop
of the unseen Sculptor who chisels in its secret chambers the
living forms that contribute to character development and an increasing
likeness to Jesus Christ." That old man, now in heaven, was one of the
greatest illustrations I have ever known of the spiritual freshness and
fruitfulness that comes from meditating on God's Word. His experience can be
ours - if we meditate.
O Father, help me to master the art of Scripture meditation,
so that through the written Word and by the meditated Word, those
around me may see the Living Word. Amen. [Every Day With Jesus Bible
with Selwyn Hughes devotional re Psa. 39:3]
Take Time To Be Holy. The word holy does not mean
goody-goody; it means set apart for sacred use. That is what these quiet
moments in My Presence are accomplishing within you. As you focus your
mind and heart on Me, you are being transformed: re-created into the
one I designed you to be. This process requires blocks of time set
aside for communion with Me.
The benefits of this practice are limitless. Emotional and
physical healing are enhanced by your soaking in the Light of My
Presence. You experience a nearness to Me that strengthens your faith and
fills you with Peace. You open yourself up to receive the many
blessings that I have prepared for you. You become a cleansed temple of My
Holy Spirit, who is able to do in and through you immeasurably more
than you ask or imagine. These are just some of the benefits of being
still in My Presence. [2 Thes. 1:10; Psa. 27:4; 1 Cor. 6:19; Eph.
3:20] Jesus Calling by Sarah Young
I designed you to live in union with Me. This union does not
negate who you are; it actually makes you more fully yourself. When you
try to live independently of Me, you experience emptiness and
dissatisfaction. You may gain the whole world and yet lose everything that really
Find fulfillment through living close to Me, yielding to My
purposes for you. Though I may lead you along paths that feel alien to
you, trust that I know what I am doing. If you follow Me
wholeheartedly, you will discover facets of yourself that were previously
hidden. I know you intimately - far better than you know yourself. In
union with Me, you are complete. In closeness to Me, you are
transformed more and more into the one I designed you to be. (Mark 8:36;
Psalm 139:13-16; 2 Corinthians 3:17-18) [Jesus Calling by Sarah
The busyness of things obscures our concentration of God. Let
other things come and go as they will; let other people criticize us
as they will; but never allow anything to obscure the life that "is
hidden with Christ in God" (Colossians 3:3). Never let a hurried
lifestyle disturb the relationship of abiding in Him. [In His Time; My
Utmost For His Highest]
Each day, you can have your own personal transfiguration as you
worship the Lord and yield to the Spirit. [Chapter by Chapter Bible
Commentary by Warren Wiersbe]
LINKS FOR FURTHER STUDY ON THIS PASSAGE:
GREAT PRAISE SONG
UPCOMING PROPHECY SERIES BY DOUG BATCHELOR
Landmarks of Prophecy
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