II Corinthians 3

  • II Corinthians 3:1-3
    • We are not to boast, but when the situation demands, we can defend our work in Christ.
    • “tablets of stone” – Paul is setting up a comparison between the Old and New Covenant. Note that this is a “not-but” construction.
    • Ezekiel 11:19-20; 36:26-27; Jeremiah 31:31-33 – There was a new covenant coming, the glory of which far outshone the Old Covenant.
  • II Corinthians 3:4-6
    • See Romans 4:15. The Old Covenant brought wrath.
    • See Hebrews 9:15.
  • II Corinthians 3:7-8
    • See Exodus 20:18. The Old Covenant came with glory. Exodus 24:15-18; Hebrews 12:21. Moses’ face glowed after interacting with God.
    • In II Corinthians 3:7, the fading (or ineffective) glory might be due to the veil Moses put over his face (or maybe that the Old Covenant was being done away with).
  • II Corinthians 3:12-13
    • The Israelites didn’t want to see Moses’ face shining, so he wore a veil. Perhaps they could not tolerate the righteousness of God shining light on their own sin.
  • II Corinthians 3:14-16
    • The heart of the Israelites was darkened. They effectively had veiled their own faces before God.
  • II Corinthians 3:17-18
    • When we are in a right relationship with God, we are spiritually free.


  • Participants in the New Covenant must continually be transformed instead of being conformed to this world (Romans 12:2).