Reflecting Jesus

Christian Reflections

Christianity Oasis provides this Reflecting God and Reflecting Jesus study on Christian Reflections and Biblical Reflections bringing forth truth & understanding.

Daily Bread Devotional Bible Study
The Second Epistle of Paul the Apostle to the Corinthians
Chapter 3

Reflecting God & Reflecting Jesus

Christian Reflections & Biblical Reflections

Welcome to our Christianity Oasis Daily Bread study program. This is our very interesting Reflecting God and Reflecting Jesus Bible study taking an in depth look into Christian Reflections and Biblical Reflections. The absolutely awesome message will truly bring a smile to the lips and heart and shine the LIGHT of Truth upon your be-YOU-tiful Christian walk path.

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Christian Reflections - Biblical Reflections Path

Glad to have you back to continue our study of this second letter from Paul to the Corinthians. We're getting a bit of an idea of what it was like to be an Apostle.

Of course we can't possibly fathom the intensity of the ups and downs or the joy or pain of the job, but we sure know that it included all of those things.

I always like to have you put yourself in the Biblical author's shoes, to more closely relate to what he's writing, so let's say you're Paul for a moment, you've been to Corinth and brought many people out of the darkness of man's world into the light of Faith in Jesus.

You've poured out your heart to them, you've spent years leading them, starting them from the beginning, like little children in Faith, and have watched them grow through good times, and some bad. You love them, like your own family, you want the best for them, you try your best to answer all their spiritual needs. In sincerity, you've given them a part of your life.

Reflecting God / Reflecting Jesus Lesson
Christian Reflections / Biblical Reflections Truth

Then ... Wham! Somebody comes along who says you're not for real. Seeds of doubt are planted. Their roots take hold before you can get there to remove them, so the doubt grows deeper. Now, you feel like you have to start at square one again.

Paul didn't hide his disappointment about this in the first two chapters of this letter. And he didn't hide the fact that this hurt his feelings either. Paul isn't bashful about expressing himself about anything, you may have noticed, and he has a very effective way of wording his wide range of emotions. Now, at this point he gets a little snappy for a few words, and then he can't help but melt back into the Paul who understands mankind, and ever seeks to guide them with Grace back to righteousness. You can sort of imagine him, if he were speaking these things instead of writing them, standing with his fists propped on his sides and tapping one toe on the ground saying:

So, do we (Paul and Timothy) have to start all over again to prove ourselves worthy? Or do we need letters of recommendation to show you, or letters of commendation from you?

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The fists probably open up now and one hand covers the other, placed over his heart as Paul reminds the Corinthians that they themselves are the evidence of his worthiness.

You yourselves are the letter we have, written in our hearts for all to read, known and read by all men, It is clear that Christ wrote this letter and sent it by us, not written in ink, but with the Spirit of the living God, not in tables of stone, but in human hearts. And we have confidence that it couldn't come from us, we are only able to deliver it [the New Covenant] from God by the Spirit because the letter kills, but the spirit gives life.

We know how Paul likes to compare things by saying, If you think this old thing was great, how can this new thing not be even greater? This is sort of more evidence still, on Paul's behalf, of his worthiness, that he is an able servant of the New Testament, as he said above. He explains this further:

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Christian Reflections + Biblical Reflections Hope

2 Corinthians 3:7-8

7 But if the ministration of death, written and engraven in stones, was glorious, so that the children of Israel could not stedfastly behold the face of Moses for the glory [brilliance] of his countenance; which glory was to be done away:
8 How shall not the ministration of the spirit be rather glorious?

There are a few things to know, here. Firstly, what is the ministry of death? It's just a phrase that Paul is using to describe law. Remember how he explained in Romans and in 1 Corinthians, how the law brings death and destruction, and Faith brings life and peace.

Secondly, the children of Israel didn't know that the Old Testament was the "Old" Testament, or was going to be done away with and replaced. They thought it was the "only" testament. As we've discussed before, it was a glorious thing in those days. It was the difference between them and the rest of the world. God gave them such a righteous law, which nobody else had, which made them a people more righteous than anyone else. It didn't become "Old" until the "New" was brought to life (Hebrews 8:6-8) just as God predicted (Jeremiah 31:31-33).

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Thirdly, the Old Testament was written on stones, the New Testament is written in hearts. Which one is spiritual?

Okay, now remember that glory means magnificence in these next few passages, and let's get back to Paul's letter as he repeats the comparison in different words.

2 Corinthians 3:9-16

9 For if the ministration of condemnation [the Old Covenant] be glory, much more doth the ministration of righteousness [the New Covenant] exceed in glory.
10 For even that which was made glorious had no glory in this respect, by reason of the glory that excelleth [is greater].
11 For if that which is done away was glorious, much more that which remaineth is glorious.
12 Seeing then that we have such hope, we use great plainness [boldness] of speech:
13 And not as Moses, which put a veil over his face [Exodus 34:33-35], that the children of Israel could not stedfastly look to the end of that which is abolished:
14 But their minds were blinded: for until this day remaineth the same veil untaken away in the reading of the old testament; which veil is done away in Christ.

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It's amazing how symbolic so many things from the Old Testament were. If you haven't read this story about Moses in a while, after reading Paul's explanation of it here, now is a great time to go back and read it again, with your new understanding of its symbolism.

2 Corinthians 3:15-16

15 But even unto this day, when Moses is read, the veil is upon their heart.
16 Nevertheless when it [one's soul] shall turn to the Lord, the veil shall be taken away.

In Exodus 34:34, when Moses went to talk to the Lord, he removed the veil. When a person turns to the Lord, their blindness is taken away, the veil is done away with, and you can clearly see Christ is the New Way.

2 Corinthians 3:17-18

17 Now the Lord is that Spirit [the Spirit that gives life, that Paul talked about earlier]: and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is liberty [freedom].
18 But we all, with open [uncovered] face beholding as in a glass [like seeing in a mirror] the glory of the Lord, are changed into the same image from glory to glory, even as by the Spirit of the Lord.

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What does this mean? We are not blinded with a veil, so when you look at yourself, you can see the magnificence of the Lord within you. When He is in your heart, you reflect Him. You are in His image. His magnificence is transferred to you by the power of the Holy Spirit. The next time you look in the mirror, think about that! Now that's an image to imagine.

Can't wait until next time when we share more Daily Bread. You know where.

Click the link below for your reflection:

There is a force out there that is attempting to overtake us all; it is Satan. There is another force that is protecting us from him; it is the Holy Spirit. It is a battle for souls. This battle is called Spiritual Warfare, and like it or not, you are right in the middle of it.

How to Prepare for Spiritual Warfare