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Reflecting His Glory

2 Corinthians 3:18 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

    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 glory to glory, even as by the Spirit of the Lord.”

Paul has been referencing Exodus 34, which describes how the skin of Moses’ face would shine after meeting with God. Moses’ face so powerfully reflected God’s glory that he covered it with a veil to protect the Israelites from even the reflection of God’s presence with them. Their sin had caused their minds to be hardened. In that condition, God’s glory was unbearable to them.

Paul has described the only way for this separation between sinful humans and God’s glory to be removed. It is not through study or attempts at obedience or even through religiously following the law.

God removes this “veil” between Himself and people only when they come to Him through faith in Christ. Only in Christ is sin forgiven once and for all. Only then does God’s Holy Spirit act to remove the veil of hardness and allow those in Christ to see God’s glory as He has revealed it in Jesus.

Now Paul shows that this moment of spiritual revelation is followed by spiritual transformation. With the veil gone, all those in Christ have unveiled faces, boldly looking at Christ, who is the glory of God. We can now see Him for who and what He is. This act of seeing, of understanding, the nature of Christ begins the process through which God transforms His children into the image of Christ.

Paul writes that this change happens from “one degree of glory to another” or “from glory to glory” in the Greek language. It is a remarkable promise. Not only are those in Christ finally freed to see God’s glory, but they begin to become God’s glory as they begin to become like Christ. This is not something we accomplish for ourselves through study or discipline or self-will.

Paul insists that it is the Spirit of God who makes this happen in all of those who are in Christ Jesus. Seeing the glory of God in Christ initiates what some scholars call “progressive sanctification,” meaning that we will become more and more like Him as we are changed by the Spirit over time.

 

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Hey You, The One Thinking About Walking Away

Apostolic_Perspectives

Is walking away really the best thing to do? You, the one struggling in your faith right now. Maybe you aren’t struggling with who Jesus is but you find yourself struggling with what Jesus wants you to do. “It’s all too hard some days,” you say to yourself. That little voice inside of your head says it’s better just to walk away, stay quiet and blend in.

Of course, that little voice would say that. Why? He’s the most selfish being of all. Satan, the deceptive one, was so filled with pride that he was kicked out of heaven. He wanted so badly to be like God, maybe even one-up God, that he lost his place in perfect heaven. And ever since his expulsion, he has done his best to get as many people as possible in his realm.

Being a Christian has never been easy. Jesus didn’t have it easy. The first disciples didn’t have it easy. The early church didn’t have it easy. Countless men and women throughout history haven’t had it easy. Some remained steadfast until the end. These men and women were firmly planted and rooted in Him. Others, their roots weren’t as deep and when life got hard, their shallow roots dried up. And for many others, their roots were never established, to begin with.

As a Christ-follower, the world is not your friend. You live in the world but you shouldn’t be of it (John 17:14). Yet far too many are falling to the ways of the world and when the weight of it all is too much, reconciling the world with our Christian convictions is too much to bear. So many choose the easiest route, the widest path, and succumb to the world. The problem with this is that even if your salvation is secure, the choices you make to abandon the commands God has given because they are too hard or just too much affects your future generations.

When individuals actively choose to walk away from the commands of the Lord, they leave collateral damage for those after them to clean up. So, not only will those who come after you have to fight the battles you, yourself, are contemplating walking away from, they will have to clean up your mess too. Is that really what you want to be known for?

Read the rest of this post HERE.

Erin Olson is the founder of Sandalfeet Ministries, an author, blogger, Bible study teacher, and podcast host of The Depot Podcast with Erin Olson on the Charisma Podcast Network. She is a wife, mother of three, and a friend to many.

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