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By: Larry Shaffer
A scene from my home state of Washington!
I Can See
2 Corinthians 3:18 and Luke 24:13ff
As I’ve been thinking on 2 Corinthians 3:18 the last couple of days (it has always been one of my favorite verses in the Bible) I began to realize that one of my favorite stories in the Bible beautifully illustrates the verse. After all, the best way to understand the Bible is to let the Bible interpret the Bible and to use biblical stories to illustrate Biblical truth.
As a reminder, 2 Corinthians 3:18 says,
“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.”
The main questions that arise are ‘what is an unveiled face’ and ‘what is the mirror that reflects the glory of the Lord?’ The veil is referred to earlier in chapter 3:15, “But to this day whenever Moses (OT scripture) is read, a veil lies over their heart, but when a person turns to the Lord, the veil is taken away.”
I don’t get it
Why did the Jews scream for their Messiah to be crucified? A veil was over the understanding of their heart. They didn’t see Jesus in the Old Testament even though He is all over the pages. Also, I said last time that the beauty of God’s creation and other blessings of God reveal some of His glory but the true mirror reflecting His glory is God’s Word, the Bible. It comprehensively reveals the attributes and character of God along with His purposes and plan.
Our hope was shattered
Luke 24 sheds additional light on this verse. It was three days after the crucifixion of Jesus. Two men were traveling to Emmaus. “While they were talking and discussing, Jesus Himself approached and began traveling with them, but their eyes were prevented from recognizing him” verses 15,16. They had a veil over their eyes. Jesus asked them, ‘what are you talking about’? They said they were discussing all the recent events related to Jesus, the Nazarene. Notice they didn’t say Jesus the Messiah. They said, “but we were hoping He would redeem Israel,” verse 21.
Verse 27 is a pivotal verse about what Jesus said to them;
“Then beginning with Moses (the first five books of the OT) and with all the prophets, HE EXPLAINED TO THEM THE THINGS CONCERNING HIMSELF IN ALL THE SCRIPTURE.” “Then their eyes were opened and they recognized him.”
Boom! The veil was removed. “Then they said to one another, were not our hearts burning within us while He was speaking to us on the road, WHILE HE WAS EXPLAINING THE SCRIPTURE TO US,” v31,32.
The Joy of 20/20 Vision!
The veil was removed and they could see Jesus all over the scriptures. They see the glory of the Lord by understanding scripture. The mirror that reflects the glory of the Lord is scripture and we see that glory as we understand scripture more and more. Lord, open the eyes of my heart everyday as I seek you in scripture. Amen.