Tuesday, April 3, 2012

Continuous Transformation





Scripture

But to this day whenever Moses is read, a veil lies over their heart;
(2 Corinthians 3:15 NASB)
but whenever a person turns to the Lord, the veil is taken away.
(2 Corinthians 3:16 NASB)
Now the Lord is the Spirit, and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is liberty.
(2 Corinthians 3:17 NASB)
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 from the Lord, the Spirit.
(2 Corinthians 3:18 NASB)

 

Observation

 

Moses was the one person who met with God face to face. The glory of God's presence was overwhelming and God's glory was reflected in Moses' face after the meeting. The reflection was so bright that the people couldn't stand to look at him and so they asked him to cover his face with a veil. This he did and the veil remained, both physically and figuratively. The people feared that closeness to God. They didn't want to see God's glory in Moses' face, and nor did they want God's glory to be revealed in the word. Instead, they wanted it all covered up -- because that made it more palatable to them. But with the coming of the Holy Spirit everything is changed. When a person turns toward God, through the power of the Holy Spirit the veil is stripped away and the Spirit draws that person toward God, giving them freedom and liberty -- the kind that comes from participating in God through the Spirit. The veil is removed and we want to look on the face of God. We don't see the face of God directly, but we see the incarnation of God, in the form of Jesus Christ -- he is the "image" of God. We are the mirrors who are to reflect the image -- and as we draw closer to him we are ever transformed moment by moment and from glory to glory as we participate through the Spirit in God, who is infinite!

 

Application

 

The journey with God is one of continuous transformation. Gregory of Nyssa once said that if we are not moving forward, we are sinning. The entire journey is one in which we are drawn closer to God and he is continually transforming us along the way. There are moments along the journey where significant changes are made in the Christian life. The image in all of us has been lost as a result of sin. That image of Christ which was to be in us -- it is lost. It is lost because we have turned around and gone our own way. There is no way we can be a reflection of Christ if we are not facing him! At the same time, God is in his grace never, ever, turns his back on us. He is always reaching out to us and calling us back to him.

When we do respond to him -- and we turn around -- we begin to walk in his direction again. The image is restored, but may be a little dusty and dirty from the journey. There is a moment in which the image is cleaned up, the corruptions removed -- the mirror is scrubbed up by the power of the Holy Spirit -- making it possible for a pure reflection of the image. However, we must understand that this is only part of the journey. Even when the mirror is clean, the reflection depends on the proximity to the original. Therefore we are invited into this journey "from glory to glory" as we climb ever higher in our journey toward Christ.

Paul was never satisfied that he had "made it" but instead, constantly kept his face turned toward the goal, which was Christ himself. This too must be the goal for our lives. To never stop climbing. To never stop seeking to grow. To never stop being transformed. To daily seek the glory of the Lord and his holy presence in our lives.

 

Prayer

 

Lord, thank you for your glory which draws us onward and upward. May we be faithful and obedient! Amen.

1 comment:

  1. "There is no way we can be a reflection of Christ if we are not facing him" . . . keeps it real and simple to understand. It's a quote I will remember!

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