2 Corinthians 3 - Steve Wiggins Daily Devotional
“Therefore having such a hope, we used great boldness – not like Moses, who used to put a veil over his face so that the sons of Israel could not look at the end of what was fading away. But their minds were closed. For to this day, at the reading of the old covenant, the same veil remains; it is not lifted, because it is set aside, only in Messiah. However, to this day, whenever Moses is read, a veil lies over their hearts, but whenever a person turns to the L_rd, the veil is removed.” 2nd Cor 3: 12-16
Every time Moses returned from the L_rd’s presence, His face would radiate G_d’s glory. He would tell the people G_d’s instruction, and then he would veil his face. Why the veil? Some would say it was because the people were afraid to come near him. Exodus 34 tells of the people’s fear of Moses’ radiance. But that’s not the reason for the veil.
Moses wore the veil because his radiant appearance only lasted so long. Paul teaches that Moses veiled his face because he didn’t want the people to see G_d’s glory fading from him. It’s kinda like seeing the band KISS without their makeup, or the wizard of OZ behind the curtain. He was concerned that if the people saw him without the glory, they would cease to acknowledge him as leader.
The veil was not intended to keep people from seeing the radiance. It was intended to conceal the fact that the glory was fading. In concealing the reality, Moses became larger than life In Israel’s eyes…almost godlike. G_d Himself predicted this would happen when Moses tried to diminish G_d’s call by asking the L_rd to let Aaron be His spokesman.
“He will speak to the people for you. He will be your spokesman and you will serve as G_d to him.” Exodus 4:16
Today, when “Moses” (the Torah) is read, religious non-Messianic Jews remember the “glory” of when Moses delivered the law to their fathers. Yet, they overlook Moses’ tragic flaws. Without worshipping Moses as “G_d”, he is elevated to the status of a god, in many respects. Paul describes a “veil” covering the hearts of non-believing religious Jews…of whom he once was. The veil represents a conflict, between the desire to be identified as G_d’s “chosen”, and the inability to keep the Torah. In short, the veil is a byproduct of pride, because of the rejection of Messiah Yeshua. In rejecting G_d’s provision of atonement through Messiah, they have become “blinded”. Thus, while surrounded by the ancient things of G_d they are just as lost as if they were steeped in paganism.
Only Yeshua can remove the veil, because only He can impart everlasting atonement. Only Messiah can give us an unchanging, secure identity that is not dependant on our works. And His glory never fades! Isaiah 40:8; John 1:14
~Steve Wiggins, Associate Leader, Worship Leader
Daily Devotional, Wednesday, September 18, 2013