Are we beginning to praise ourselves again? Are we like others, who need to bring you letters of recommendation, or who ask you to write such letters on their behalf? Surely not! 2 The only letter of recommendation we need is you yourselves. Your lives are a letter written in our hearts; everyone can read it and recognize our good work among you. 3 Clearly, you are a letter from Christ showing the result of our ministry among you. This “letter” is written not with pen and ink, but with the Spirit of the living God. It is carved not on tablets of stone, but on human hearts.
Do people see something of the patience of Christ, the meekness of Christ, the purity of Christ, the love of Christ, and the tender compassion of Christ in me?
As I mingle with others in my daily employment, those with whom I have the most to do should see a difference.
Do they say, “Well, so-and-so may be a Christian; if he is, I do not think much of Christianity”?
Or are we so living that others looking upon us say, “Well, if that is Christianity, I wish I knew something of it in my own life”?
Long for someone to say to you: “I cannot help but believe in the reality of the message you preach because of the effect it has on the people I have seen who believe it.”
This is what Paul means when he says that we are the letter of Christ.
–H. A. Ironside
You’re writing a gospel, a chapter each day
By the deeds that you do and the words that you say.
Men read that gospel, be it faithless or true.
What is that gospel, according to you?
4 We are confident of all this because of our great trust in God through Christ. 5 It is not that we think we are qualified to do anything on our own. Our qualification comes from God. 6 He has enabled us to be ministers of his new covenant. This is a covenant not of written laws, but of the Spirit. The old written covenant ends in death; but under the new covenant, the Spirit gives life.
“I Can See Jesus in You” — oh, may that be true! HERE is Twila Paris.
The Glory of the New Covenant
7 The old way, with laws etched in stone, led to death, though it began with such glory that the people of Israel could not bear to look at Moses’ face. For his face shone with the glory of God, even though the brightness was already fading away.
Click HERE to read the account in Exodus 34:29-35.
8 Shouldn’t we expect far greater glory under the new way, now that the Holy Spirit is giving life? 9 If the old way, which brings condemnation, was glorious, how much more glorious is the new way, which makes us right with God! 10 In fact, that first glory was not glorious at all compared with the overwhelming glory of the new way. 11 So if the old way, which has been replaced, was glorious, how much more glorious is the new, which remains forever!
12 Since this new way gives us such confidence, we can be very bold.
13 We are not like Moses, who put a veil over his face so the people of Israel would not see the glory, even though it was destined to fade away. 14 But the people’s minds were hardened, and to this day whenever the old covenant is being read, the same veil covers their minds so they cannot understand the truth. And this veil can be removed only by believing in Christ. 15 Yes, even today when they read Moses’ writings, their hearts are covered with that veil, and they do not understand.
16 But whenever someone turns to the Lord, the veil is taken away. 17 For the Lord is the Spirit, and wherever the Spirit of the Lord is, there is freedom. 18 So all of us who have had that veil removed can see and reflect the glory of the Lord. And the Lord—who is the Spirit—makes us more and more like him as we are changed into his glorious image.
from My Utmost for His Highest
by Oswald Chambers
The outstanding characteristic of a Christian is this unveiled frankness before God so that the life becomes a mirror for other lives. By being filled with the Spirit, we are transformed, and by beholding we become mirrors. You always know when a person has been beholding the glory of the Lord; you feel in your inner spirit that he is the mirror of the Lord’s own character.
The golden rule for your life and mine is this concentrated keeping of the life open towards God. Let everything else –- work, clothes, food, everything on earth –- go by the board, saving that one thing. The rush of other things always tends to obscure this concentration on God. We have to maintain ourselves in the place of beholding, keeping the life absolutely spiritual all through. Let other things come and go as they may, let other people criticize as they will, but never allow anything to obscure the life that is hid with Christ in God. Never be hurried out of the relationship of abiding in Him. It is the one thing that is apt to fluctuate but it ought not to. The severest discipline of a Christian’s life is to learn how to keep “beholding as in a glass the glory of the Lord.”
New Living Translation (NLT) Holy Bible. New Living Translation copyright© 1996, 2004, 2007 by Tyndale House Foundation. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers Inc., Carol Stream, Illinois 60188. All rights reserved.