Are we beginning to commend ourselves again? Or do we need, like some people, letters of recommendation to you or from you? You yourselves are our letter, written on our hearts, known and read by everyone. You show that you are a letter from Christ, the result of our ministry, written not with ink but with the Spirit of the living God, not on tablets of stone but on tablets of human hearts. (2 Corinthians 3:1-3)
What is a spirit-filled life? It is a life that exhibits the power of the Holy Spirit. Nothing operates without the power; our every organ would cease to function if there was no energy in our bodies. Nations go to war over power. The apostles began their ministry when they received the power of the Holy Spirit on the Day of Pentecost.
- Move from ability to sufficiency.
Not that we are competent in ourselves to claim anything for ourselves, but our competence comes from God. He has made us competent as ministers of a new covenant—not of the letter but of the Spirit; for the letter kills, but the Spirit gives life. (2 Corinthians 3:5-6)
We need to know that, though we have human ability, our sufficiency comes from God. When we allow the Holy Spirit to work in us, He empowers us to use our ability in a new dimension. Jesus, the Lord incarnate, received the Holy Spirit and then fasted for 40 days before He began His ministry. How much more should we? We must learn to submit to Him in everything.
- Move from religiosity to liberty.
Now if the ministry that brought death, which was engraved in letters on stone, came with glory, so that the Israelites could not look steadily at the face of Moses because of its glory, transitory though it was, will not the ministry of the Spirit be even more glorious? If the ministry that brought condemnation was glorious, how much more glorious is the ministry that brings righteousness! For what was glorious has no glory now in comparison with the surpassing glory. And if what was transitory came with glory, how much greater is the glory of that which lasts! Therefore, since we have such a hope, we are very bold. We are not like Moses, who would put a veil over his face to prevent the Israelites from seeing the end of what was passing away. But their minds were made dull, for to this day the same veil remains when the old covenant is read. It has not been removed, because only in Christ is it taken away. Even to this day when Moses is read, a veil covers their hearts. But whenever anyone turns to the Lord, the veil is taken away. Now the Lord is the Spirit, and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is freedom. And we all, who with unveiled faces contemplate the Lord’s glory, are being transformed into his image with ever-increasing glory, which comes from the Lord, who is the Spirit. (2 Corinthians 3:7-18)
Though glorious, Moses’ ministry was a ministry of condemnation. We now live in the ministry of righteousness because the Lord Jesus liberated man; the veil was torn in two, and there is no more condemnation. A religious spirit attempts to repair the veil that separates man from God through empty actions. Going to church regularly is not enough for righteousness; we need to impact lives for the Kingdom by living in a way that reveals the power of the Holy Spirit. We need to heal people and touch their hearts through the ministry.
- Move from the ministry of transition to transformation.
Under the old covenant, to look upon God was to die. But God has revealed Himself in Christ and established a new covenant which gives us confidence to look upon Him and be transformed, praise the Lord Jesus Christ.
We can do this by turning to God and removing the veil of religion to behold the kind face of our Lord. We need to fix our eyes upon Jesus, the Author of our faith. When we behold Him in our hearts, He is faithful to restore us to His image as we were created.
“Now the Lord is a Spirit, and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is freedom” (2 Corinthians 3:17).
Praise the Lord.