7 The Law of Moses brought only the promise of death, even though it was carved on stones and given in a wonderful way. Still the Law made Moses' face shine so brightly the people of Israel could not look at it, even though it was a fading glory. 8So won't the agreement the Spirit brings to us be even more wonderful? 9If something that brings the death sentence is glorious, won't something that makes us acceptable to God be even more glorious? 10In fact, the new agreement is so wonderful that the Law is no longer glorious at all. 11The Law was given with a glory that faded away. But the glory of the new agreement is much greater, because it will never fade away.
12This wonderful hope makes us feel like speaking freely. 13 We are not like Moses. His face was shining, but he covered it to keep the people of Israel from seeing the brightness fade away. 14The people were stubborn, and something still keeps them from seeing the truth when the Law is read. Only Christ can take away the covering that keeps them from seeing.
15When the Law of Moses is read, they have their minds covered over 16 with a covering that is removed only for those who turn to the Lord. 17The Lord and the Spirit are one and the same, and the Lord's Spirit sets us free. 18 So our faces are not covered. They show the bright glory of the Lord, as the Lord's Spirit makes us more and more like our glorious Lord.
I grew up traveling with my missionary parents, studied cultural anthropology in college, and visited almost every country on earth by my 50th birthday.
One thing remains – nothing ever changes.
You see, we might think that wars, economics, politics, religion or technology have changed our world significantly.
But the truth of the matter is, humanity – at its core – remains the same through the ages. Take, for instance, Paul writing this letter to the Corinthians trying to help them understand that yes, the “old way” was good, but there is a “new way” and it is far superior.
I love the analogy of moving forward in life as driving a car – there’s a reason why the rearview mirror is small and the windshield is large. You can orient yourself with a quick glance at the past, but it’s the future that we must focus on driving toward.
Paul is actually arguing that much of the time we are choosing to view the world through the rear view mirror: a narrow and misdirected view of the world that is fundamentally pointed at ourselves and ignorant of the direction in which we are headed. The “freedom” brought to us by the Spirit is the freedom to see the world through a much bigger lens – the windshield – that allows us to move onward with confidence about where we are going.
The biggest challenge we face today is clearly seeing what God has in our future. The same veil Paul referred to in his day is clouding our vision of society today.
That realization, more than smartphones, globalization, terrorism, and a bevvy of broken political systems, ought to be what continually drives us to God’s Word, and to our knees, seeking truth. We desire the same thing Paul desired in the time of the Corinthian church – for God to lift the veil and for people to see and seek Him.
Heavenly Father that transcends time and space, your truth is all we seek. It is the remedy for all of the problems in our world today, yet people cannot see it. Let the veil be lifted. Open our eyes – and the eyes of those around us – so that the veil may be lifted and all can clearly see and seek your truth. Amen.