Summary: A sermon on 2 Corinthians 3:16-18.
Sermon for 5/19/2002
A. My favorite movie is Hoosiers. Explain the movie. Explain this quote.
A. "Forget about the crowds, the size of the school, their fancy uniforms, and remember what got you here, focus on the fundamentals we have gone over time and time again, and most importantly don’t get caught up thinking about winning or losing this game. If you put your efforts and concentration on playing to your potential, being the best you can be, I don’t care what the scoreboard says at the end of the game, in my book we’re going to be winners."
A. So many people are satisfied with mediocrity. They do not want to do better. Losers, no matter how well they have done. The Lord expects the best, because he gave the best for us.
B. Read 2 Corinthians 3:7-18. The 3:16’s of the Bible.
B. 2 Corinthians.
1. Paul helped to found the church at Corinth.
2. While over in Ephesus, Paul wrote 1 Corinthians to correct some misunderstanding and problems in the church.
3. Paul had to leave Ephesus and go back to Macedonia. He was making his way back to Corinth.
4. Titus was sent to Corinth to help them in their difficulties and failings. To help collect an offering for the Jerusalem Church.
5. Titus returned from Corinth and came to Paul and reported that Paul’s first letter had accomplished much good. However, some of the leaders were still denying that Paul was a genuine apostle of Christ.
6. Then it was the Paul wrote this letter, and sent it on ahead by Titus, expecting soon himself to reach Corinth.
7. Its purpose seems mainly to have been Paul’s Vindication of himself as an apostle of Christ, and to remind them that, inasmuch as he himself had founded the Church in Corinth, he did have a right to have say in its spiritual life.
C. 2 Corinthians 3.
1. Paul in this section is addressing the Judaizers. They wanted the Christians to follow the Law of Moses along with the gospel of Jesus Christ.
2. They were discrediting Paul.
3. This led to a Contrast of His ministry with theirs, the gospel with the Law.
4. One written on stone, the other on hearts.
5. One of the letter, the other of the Spirit.
6. One unto death, the other unto life.
7. One veiled, the other unveiled.
8. One unto condemnation, the other unto righteousness.
9. One passes, the other remains.
D. (Exo 34:29 NIV) When Moses came down from Mount Sinai with the two tablets of the Testimony in his hands, he was not aware that his face was radiant because he had spoken with the LORD.(Exo 34:30 NIV) When Aaron and all the Israelites saw Moses, his face was radiant, and they were afraid to come near him.(Exo 34:31 NIV) But Moses called to them; so Aaron and all the leaders of the community came back to him, and he spoke to them.(Exo 34:32 NIV) Afterward all the Israelites came near him, and he gave them all the commands the LORD had given him on Mount Sinai.(Exo 34:33 NIV) When Moses finished speaking to them, he put a veil over his face.(Exo 34:34 NIV) But whenever he entered the Lord’s presence to speak with him, he removed the veil until he came out. And when he came out and told the Israelites what he had been commanded,(Exo 34:35 NIV) they saw that his face was radiant. Then Moses would put the veil back over his face until he went in to speak with the LORD.
E. Here is a picture of the Old Covenant. A partial revelation, shining through a veil, flashing through symbols and rituals, expressed partially in some prophecy, but never or rarely approaching the world with an unveiled face so that the light of God can be clearly seen and understood.
F. Christianity is, and Christian teachers ought to be the opposite of all of this. They should say it like it is and make God’s love and gospel shine clearly through the darkness. The Old Testament was not like this. Jesus Christ spoke as one with authority and we see the Messiah always going to the heart of the issue.
G. People in our day want to know what is in it for them. What will it do for me?
Thesis: What are the practical results of being a part of the New Covenant? What are the benefits of becoming a Christian?
** Vs. 16- 18
H. The Veil is taken away (16)
A. WE no longer have to hide behind masks.
1. No more masks with God.
a. We know how we really are.
b. I am so righteous and so good.