Sunday, August 23, 2015

Romans Chapter 15 Part Two

Romans 15:17-19

As a result of his special ministry by God’s grace to the Gentiles, Paul affirmed, Therefore I glory (lit., “I have boasting”) in Christ Jesus in my service to God (lit., “in the things relating to God”). Paul is saying in this Scripture that his glory is in Jesus. In the 11th chapter of 1 Corinthians, Paul goes to great extremes to show the suffering he has gone through for Christ. He is quick to say that the only glory he has, or we have, is in Christ.
Paul never boasted of his accomplishments as an apostle, but only in what Christ had accomplished through him.
This was no boasting in mere human achievements, as Paul explained: I will not venture to speak of anything except what Christ has accomplished through me in leading the Gentiles to obey God (lit., “unto the obedience of the Gentiles”). “Obedience” is a synonym for coming to Christ (cf. Rom_1:5; 1Pe_1:2; cf. “obey” in Rom_16:26) for God “commands all men everywhere to repent” (Act_17:30).
Paul recognized that all credit goes to Christ. And yet Paul was involved; God worked by what he had said and done. I Corinthians 3:6-8 "I have planted, Apollos watered; but God gave the increase." "So then neither is he that planteth any thing, neither he that watereth; but God that giveth the increase." “Now he that planteth and he that watereth are one: and every man shall receive his own reward according to his own labour." “"For we are labourers together with God: ye are God's husbandry, [ye are] God's building."
Paul is saying above and these verses here, also, that all who labor for God are doing it in the power and might that God has provided us with.
We may preach and minister to someone for years and never see that person come to Christ. Someone else whom God has sent may put the final piece of the message together for that person and they may accept Christ.
It is not always the one who plants the seed that brings in the crop. The rewards will all be given out in heaven anyway.
The apostle had been used by God to perform signs (sēmeiōn, miracles that signify theological truths) and miracles (teratōn, miracles that produce wonder). Luke referred to a miracle God performed through Paul at Cyprus (Act_13:11, making Elymas blind), “signs and wonders” at Iconium (Act_14:3; cf. Act_15:12) and miracles at Lystra (Act_14:8-10, Act_14:19-20), Ephesus (Act_19:11-12), Troas (Act_20:9-12), and Malta (Act_28:1-8). Signs, wonders, and miracles authenticated the work of the apostles (2Co_12:12; Heb_2:3-4). And all this, Paul said, was through the power of the Spirit (cf. Rom_15:13). Anything Paul achieved that was worthy of praise had God’s grace as its source, Jesus Christ as its motivation and goal, and the Holy Spirit as its energy.
The result was that Paul preached the gospel from Jerusalem all the way around to Illyricum. Literally, this reads, “from Jerusalem and in a circle (i.e., Jerusalem and its environs) even to Illyricum.” “The gospel of God” (Rom_15:16) is here called the gospel of Christ. When Jesus sent the disciples out two by two, He said these signs shall follow them.
Mark 16:17-18 "And these signs shall follow them that believe; In my name shall they cast out devils; they shall speak with new tongues;" "They shall take up serpents; and if they drink any deadly thing, it shall not hurt them; they shall lay hands on the sick, and they shall recover."
We know that these miracles are not done in the flesh, but are gifts of the Spirit of God. God used them to authenticate true preaching and teaching.
I Corinthians 12:8-11 "For to one is given by the Spirit the word of wisdom; to another the word of knowledge by the same Spirit;" "To another faith by the same Spirit; to another the gifts of healing by the same Spirit;"  "To another the working of miracles; to another prophecy; to another discerning of spirits; to another [divers] kinds of tongues; to another the interpretation of tongues:" "But all these worketh that one and the selfsame Spirit, dividing to every man severally as he will."
Paul explains that his ministry was accompanied with these very signs and wonders. He quickly explains that they are not by his great ability, but through the power of the Spirit of God.
Notice that in Paul's ministry that it was not just one of these gifts that manifested itself, but many. The Scripture above says that, believers can receive several gifts. We must pray and ask God to give us the gifts that will help in our ministering.
Illyricum is a region that roughly corresponds to the former European country of Yugoslavia. From Jerusalem to Illyricum was a span of some 1400 miles.
The New Testament records several of Paul’s visits to Jerusalem after his conversion (Act_9:26-28 [cf. Gal_1:17-19]; Act_11:27-30; Act_15:2 [cf. Gal_2:1]; Act_18:22). In the last reference Jerusalem is not named, but the words “he went up and greeted the church” obviously refers to the church at Jerusalem. Paul’s visit to Illyricum is not mentioned elsewhere in the New Testament. This area, also known as Dalmatia, corresponds approximately to modern-day Yugoslavia. It is west and north of Greece (see the location on the map between Acts and Rom.). At one time Titus went to Dalmatia (2Ti_4:10). A logical suggestion is that Paul went into Illyricum from Macedonia while waiting for a response to 2 Corinthians before going on to Corinth (Act_20:1-3; 2Co_13:1-2, 2Co_13:10). This visit was fresh in his mind since Corinth was the city where he wrote Romans.

Romans 15:20-22

Reference to the geographical extent of his ministry (Rom_15:19) led Paul to declare something of his philosophy of outreach: It has always been my ambition to preach the gospel where Christ was not known (lit., “named”). Paul purposed to be a true pioneer evangelist, opening virgin territory to the good news of God’s grace in Jesus Christ. This was so that he would not be building on someone else’s foundation (cf. 1Co_3:10). Paul is saying in this that he went out as a missionary to areas where Christ had not yet been preached. His goal was to reach those who had never heard the gospel which is the primary function of a New Testament evangelist.
He planted the first seed of Christianity in many of these places. He is saying that he is not building upon the work that Jesus has already started, but went about starting new churches where there were no churches.
I Corinthians 3:9-11 "For we are labourers together with God: ye are God's husbandry, [ye are] God's building." "According to the grace of God which is given unto me, as a wise masterbuilder, I have laid the foundation, and another buildeth thereon. But let every man take heed how he buildeth thereupon." "For other foundation can no man lay than that is laid, which is Jesus Christ." Again, here, Paul is saying that the people he went to had had no other disciples bringing them the salvation message. These you might say had been heathen people. Paul tried his best to bring this message to his Jewish brothers, but they as a whole rejected his message. Of course, there were exceptions to that, but as a whole they did not receive him.
The Gentiles were the ones who really received Paul and his message of the gospel of Jesus Christ. Many churches like the church at Philippi owe their beginning to Paul's teaching.
“It is written” is a quote from Isaiah 52:15. That Old Testament quotation refers primarily to Christ’s second coming, but in its broader application it refers to the process of evangelism that began in Paul’s day and continues throughout church history until Christ returns.
Paul then expressed his ministry goal in a quotation of the second half of Isa_52:15 and explained, This is why I have often been hindered (imperf. tense, “I was being hindered many times”) from coming to you. In the last lesson we saw where Paul was sent to the Gentiles. He went on 3 missionary journeys and established churches in the name of Jesus Christ. These areas were not areas where Jesus had ministered while He was on the earth. We know that Paul faced all sorts of dangers to make these journeys. On the way to the Romans, he was even shipwrecked.
The Scripture above that says he was hindered is really an understatement. The hindrances were very great, but Paul's determination was greater.
I Thessalonians 2:18 "Wherefore we would have come unto you, even I Paul, once and again; but Satan hindered us."
Every person trying to bring the message of God can say with Paul that Satan hindered them
Up to this time Paul had always found new areas for ministry in Asia Minor and the Grecian Peninsula so that he had not yet felt free to look beyond to Rome and Spain.

Romans 15:23-24

Perhaps his visit to Illyricum convinced Paul that no more virgin territory for the gospel lay in Asia Minor and the Grecian Peninsula. This does not mean that he had visited every center, but the gospel had been introduced and local churches had been established that could complete the work (cf. Act_19:8-10). At any rate Paul concluded, There is no more place for me to work in these regions (lit., “having no more place in these regions”). Coupled with this was his longing for many years to see the Roman Christians. At the beginning of this epistle he had expressed this desire to visit them (Rom_1:10-11, Rom_1:13). Paul continued, I plan to do so (this clause does not occur in the Gr. text, but the idea is implied) when (the indefiniteness of the Gr. clause requires “whenever”) I go to Spain (cf. Rom_15:28). Spain was then a Roman colony where many Jews lived; it was the western limit of the empire. He hoped to visit them while passing through. Apparently he did not plan a long stay in Rome. They could then assist him on his journey there (lit., “and by you to be sent forward there”); that is, they would encourage him on to Spain. Paul would proceed to Spain only after he had enjoyed (lit., “I am filled full with,” “I am satisfied with”) their company for a while. We will see that Paul planned to go to Rome actually years before it became a reality. Paul's dad was a Roman, and it was Paul's desire to bring the gospel to them.
I Corinthians 16:5-7 "Now I will come unto you, when I shall pass through Macedonia: for I do pass through Macedonia." "And it may be that I will abide, yea, and winter with you, that ye may bring me on my journey whithersoever I go." "For I will not see you now by the way; but I trust to tarry a while with you, if the Lord permit."
This last verse says it all. Paul just like us must say [if the Lord permit].
Careful and sensible planning does not demonstrate a lack of trust in God’s providence. But plans must always be subject to the Lord’s control and alteration, just as Paul’s were.
The city in Spain being referred to here is Tarshish. Paul hoped the church at Rome would supply him with an escort and supplies to make the journey to Spain.
Paul paid the Roman believers the sincere compliment that their fellowship would refresh and satisfy him spiritually (cf. Rom_1:13). He also wanted to impart a spiritual gift to them, thereby strengthening them (Rom_1:11) and to have some spiritual harvest among them (Rom_1:13), that is, to be able to help them grow in Christ.

Romans 15:25-27

Paul balanced his tentative plans for the future with the business immediately at hand. I am on my way to Jerusalem in the service of the saints there (lit., “ministering [diakonōn] to the saints”). Paul wanted to go to Jerusalem one more time on his way to Rome. He will make one more futile effort to reach his brothers {Jews}.
Paul will endanger his life in this effort. He will really be under arrest the rest of his life. When he finally arrives in Rome, much of his ministry will be from his home where he is under house arrest.
Paul’s visit to Jerusalem was to deliver the voluntary offering from churches for the poor among the saints in Jerusalem (cf. Act_24:17; 1Co_16:1-4; 2Co_8:13-14; 2Co_9:12-13; Gal_2:10). Paul ministered in Macedonia and Achaia during his first and second missionary journeys. The Greek word for “contribution” carries the basic idea of sharing and is usually translated “fellowship” or “communion.” The context indicates that here it is the sharing of a financial gift to help support the poor in Jerusalem.
The churches of Asia Minor contributed to the offering also, but Paul mentioned only Macedonia and Achaia, the areas closest to Rome and those on his mind for obvious reasons.
The voluntary nature of the contribution (koinōnian, “fellowship”) is stressed by the repetition of the verb, were pleased (cf. Rom_15:26-27; 2Co_8:10-12). At the same time Paul recognized the churches had an obligation: Indeed they owe it to them (lit., “and they are debtors to them”). This sense of moral obligation had undoubtedly prompted Paul to suggest the offering. Since the Gentiles have shared in the Jews’ spiritual blessings (lit., “in their spiritual things”; cf. Rom_11:11-12, Rom_11:17-18; Rom_15:12; Gal_3:14; Eph_3:6), Gentile Christians certainly ought to share with (leitourgēsai, “to minister to, serve”; cf. leitourgon in Rom_15:16) the Jews their material blessings (lit., “in fleshly things”; cf. Gal_6:6). We see, here, that they really do appreciate all of the hardships that these saints at Jerusalem have gone through to send them the word of God. We know that many of these saints gave up everything they had to follow Jesus. It is only fair that they should live of the gifts given to the ministry.
I Corinthians 9:11 "If we have sown unto you spiritual things, [is it] a great thing if we shall reap your carnal things?"
The “things” were gospel truths first preached to the Gentile believers by the Jewish apostles, prophets, teachers and evangelists.
You can see that they brought the salvation message unselfishly to these people at cost of their livelihoods. The spiritual gift is far greater than the carnal. They are happy to send gifts in appreciation to them.

Romans 15:28-29

Again Paul said that after going to Jerusalem he would go to Spain and visit the Romans on the way (cf. Rom_15:24). Paul is really explaining to the Romans why he is going by Jerusalem before he comes to Rome. We all know that this is just one of the reasons. Paul really wants to try to win his Jewish brothers to Christianity.
The financial gift or “fruit” is the gift for the Jerusalem church; the fruit of their genuine love and gratitude.
Paul got to Rome, but not when or in the manner he anticipated! (Acts 27-28) Whether he ever got to Spain no one knows for sure. Christians should plan ahead, but they should also be flexible. Paul, not boastfully but simply confident of God’s provision, promised that his visit would be a spiritual blessing to the Roman Christians: I will come in the full measure of the blessing of Christ, that is, with Christ’s blessing to share with them (cf. Rom_1:11-13). Paul is saying that God will be with him as he brings the gospel message to Rome. God wants Paul to take the message to Rome.
Ephesians 1:3 "Blessed [be] the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who hath blessed us with all spiritual blessings in heavenly [places] in Christ:"
This fullness of the Godhead includes Father, Word, and Holy Ghost. It is as if Paul is saying they are all in the gospel message, and they truly are.

Romans 15:30-33

The Apostle Paul recognized his need for intercessory prayer support from his readers and asked for it again and again (Eph_6:19-20; Col_4:3-4; 1Th_5:25; 2Th_3:1-2; Phm_1:22). Here he entreated the Romans by our Lord Jesus Christ and by the love of the Spirit to join him in his struggle through prayer. The phrase “love of the Spirit” appears only here in Scripture and refers to Paul’s love for the Holy Spirit, not the Spirit’s love for him.
We see a simple request from Paul here. He just says pray for me. It is such a shame that he would even have to ask.
Your pastor needs your prayers. In our society today, it seems the pastor is ridiculed from all sides and few think to pray for him. Paul explains here that their prayers for him should not be just because they love him, but for the sake of all Christianity.
If the enemy can stop the pastor of a church, he can usually destroy that church. In the next Scripture here you can see why you need to pray for the preacher.
II Corinthians 4:5: "For we preach not ourselves, but Christ Jesus the Lord; and ourselves your servants for Jesus' sake."
“The love of the Spirit” is probably the love given by the Spirit (cf. Rom_5:5), not love for the Spirit. Recognizing that divine love, they would be motivated to pray. A Christian’s intercession is a means of sharing in the ministry of others.
Paul’s specific request was that he would be rescued from the unbelievers (lit., “the disobedient”) in Judea and that his service (diakonia) in Jerusalem would be acceptable to the saints. Paul wanted the Jewish Christians in Jerusalem to receive the financial gift from the Gentiles with loving gratitude, recognizing it as a gesture of brotherly love and kindness.
It seems that Paul knew there would be opposition in Jerusalem. Paul knew that there were those who desired to see him destroyed, but he went anyway. This really is the desire of every preacher, then and now. Lord, deliver me from those who will not accept my message that you have sent me with, and Lord help those chosen ones you have sent me to believe.
II Thessalonians 3:2 "And that we may be delivered from unreasonable and wicked men: for all [men] have not faith."
Many Jews in Judea rejected the gospel and were prepared to attack Paul when he returned. Aware of the trouble that awaited him, he wanted the Roman Christians to pray for his deliverance only so he could complete the ministry the lord had given him.
Their prayers were answered in that he met with success in Jerusalem and was delivered from death, but not imprisonment.
Paul was aware of the problems that lay before him in Jerusalem (Act_20:23), and he was deeply concerned that the offering from the Gentile Christians be delivered and distributed properly. If these objectives were accomplished, according to Paul, he could then by God’s will go to them with joy and… be refreshed with them. Paul was seeking a place where his message from God could be received in peace. Paul, like many ministers in our day is having a hard time finding that place of refreshing. The true desire if every minister who has ever brought the word of God in truth is that their people they ministered to would remain strong in the faith.
I Thessalonians 3:7-8 "Therefore, brethren, we were comforted over you in all our affliction and distress by your faith:" "For now we live, if ye stand fast in the Lord."
Paul eventually found the joy and rest he was looking for.
The word rendered “refreshed” suggests that Paul would be able to rest or relax with them in the knowledge of a job well done. Paul closed this section with a brief benediction: The God of peace (cf. Rom_16:20; also cf. “the God of hope,” Rom_15:13) be with you all. Amen. Who is this God of peace? His name is Jesus Christ our Lord. He is the King of Peace. If He be with you, you have eternal life within you. This Scripture in Matthew in Jesus' own Words promises all believers His presence.
Matthew 28:20 "Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and, lo, I am with you alway, [even] unto the end of the world. Amen."
Just as God is our hope, He is also the source of true peace.
This is the third benediction in this chapter (cf. Rom_15:5, Rom_15:13).

2 Corinthians Chapter 3

2 Corinthians 3:1-3

Aware of the tactics of his opponents, Paul realized that his swipe at the false teachers and defense of his own ministry might be turned against him. His first question in 2Co_3:1 (Are we beginning to commend ourselves again?) suggests that this had happened before (cf. 1Co_9:1-27). Because Paul did not want to allow the false teachers to accuse him of being proud, he began his defense by posing two questions rather than making any overt claims.
Paul is almost shaming them, in this chapter, that it is necessary for him to prove himself to them. He says, do I have to brag on my own accomplishments, or have someone else who you respect recommend me? They had accepted the message that he brought to them originally, why have they begun to doubt?
Paul’s point was that he did not need secondhand testimony when the Corinthians had firsthand proof of his sincere and godly character, as well as the truth of his message that regenerated them.
His opponents obviously carried letters of recommendation, a common practice in the first century. Paul himself followed this practice at various times on behalf of those who served with him (Rom_16:1-2; 2Co_8:22-24). Paul, however, had reason to doubt the authenticity of their letters (2Co_4:2). Unlike those false letters, apparently unavailable to public scrutiny, Paul’s letter of commendation could be examined by everybody. His “letter” was the Corinthians themselves! He is saying to them, look around and see all the people who received Christ as their Savior under my ministering. Let the Christian converts there be my recommendation. All men can look and see the Christians in the church at Corinth. That should speak to all men who I am. They were a letter… written by the Spirit of the living God dispatched by Christ Himself. The false teachers’ commendation was human; Paul’s was divine (cf. 1Co_2:1-5).
When Paul spoke of that letter written on our hearts, “hearts” probably included Timothy and Titus. On tablets of human hearts alluded to the nature of the New Covenant (Jer_31:33).
You, yourselves, are the document that you ask for. Let the results speak for themselves. Paul is saying, that the Spirit of God had written the law of God on the fleshly part of their hearts.
Does not your heart washed in the blood of the Lamb and filled with the Spirit, not witness for me? Paul is saying that the place they are now in, with Christ, is the result of him ministering Christ to them. He says the Christ within you is because you listened to the message Christ had given Paul for them.
God was writing His law on the hearts of those people He transformed. The false teachers claimed external adherence to the Mosaic Law as the basis of salvation, but the transformed lives of the Corinthians proved that salvation was an internal change wrought by God in the heart.
 In contrast with the Old Covenant inscribed in stone (Exo_24:12), the New Covenant is inscribed on human hearts (Eze_11:19; Eze_36:26). As the New is far superior to the Old, so was Paul’s commendation compared with that of the false teachers.

2 Corinthians 3:4-6

Paul’s confidence was founded not on human resources but on divine ones. He was confident in the Corinthians because the Holy Spirit had worked in them. Their faith rested on God’s power (1Co_2:1-5). Paul had placed his confidence in Christ. It actually had been Christ in Paul ministering to them. The outcome was to draw them God-ward.
Paul was confident in his ministry, and that confidence resulted in his ability to stay the course and continue moving toward the goal.
Likewise his own sufficiency and competence in the ministry was derived wholly from God (cf. 1Ti_1:12). Paul realized this more than all of them, because when he had depended on his head knowledge, he knew not Christ. Christ stopped Paul and called him to His service on the road to Damascus. Paul went into the desert and was taught of the Holy Spirit of God.
World training is not sufficient to serve God in the way pleasing unto Him. We must allow Christ to minister through us. We are to be a willing vessel. The Lord Jesus Christ will do the rest. Paul knew of his lack of sufficiency within himself. He knew that his sufficiency is of God.
Paul disdained his own ability to reason, judge or assess truth. Left to his own abilities, he was useless. He was dependent on divine revelation and the Holy Spirit’s power.
Paul’s emphasis on the New Covenant implies that his opponents were ministers of the Old Covenant. The Mosaic Covenant was a written revelation of the righteousness God asked of Israel (e.g., Ex. 19-23). It was accepted with an oath of obedience and a blood sacrifice (Exo_24:1-18). When Israel proved unable and unwilling to remain faithful to that covenant, God graciously intervened and promised a New Covenant (Jer_31:31-34; Jer_32:40), new (kainēs) both in time and in quality. It was inaugurated by Christ in His sacrifice on the cross (Luk_22:20), and is entered into by faith (Php_3:9) and lived out in dependence on the Spirit (Rom_7:6; Rom_8:4). (However, the physical and national aspects of the New Covenant which pertain to Israel have not been appropriated to the church. Those are yet to be fulfilled in the Millennium. The church today shares in the soteriological aspects of that covenant, established by Christ’s blood for all believers [cf. Heb_8:7-13].)
Reliance on human rather than divine authority in letters of commendation was shortsighted and dangerous (2Co_3:1-3). Even more so was the attempt to fulfill God’s righteousness apart from divine enablement. Those who did so found that the letter kills (cf. Rom_7:10-11). But those who trust in Christ find that the Spirit gives life (cf. Rom_8:2). The letter is speaking of the law.
Romans 7:6 " But now we are delivered from the law, that being dead wherein we were held; that we should serve in newness of spirit, and not [in] the oldness of the letter."
Testament means contract or covenant. The New Testament means the new covenant that God has made with mankind. Paul is speaking too many who knew the Law of Moses. He is explaining that in Jesus Christ, the Lord has provided a new agreement. This new covenant is not by the works of the law, but by the grace of God man is saved.
The new covenant was sealed with the shedding of the precious blood of the Lamb. All of them knew the impossibility of flawlessly keeping the law. The law brought death to those who did not keep it.
John 3:6 "That which is born of the flesh is flesh; and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit." To keep the law was an act of the flesh of man. Jesus Christ is the quickening Spirit which brings everlasting life.
I Corinthians 15:45 "And so it is written, The first man Adam was made a living soul; the last Adam [was made] a quickening spirit." The law brought death, the Spirit brought life.
 2 Corinthians 3:7

Glory from the Spirit
In the preceding portion of this letter 2:12-3:6 Paul had begun an explanation and a defense of his ministry. Prompted by the inference that his credentials were inadequate Paul cited the internal attestation of the Spirit as superior to any external human commendation. In so doing he intimated that those challenging him proclaimed an adulterated message based on the Old Covenant, acceptance of which could only lead to death.
To underscore the superiority of the New Covenant to that of the Old, particularly as it was proclaimed by his opponents, Paul discussed Exo_34:29-35. His point was to show that the Old Covenant, because it came from God, was glorious. But because its fulfillment was based on human initiative, it ultimately was transitory and “fading” (katargeō, 2Co_3:7, 2Co_3:11, 2Co_3:13), needing to be replaced by the New Covenant and the Spirit’s ministry which is eternal (Heb_9:14). To illustrate this, Paul contrasted the fading radiance of God’s glory on the face of Moses (2Co_3:7) with the ever-increasing radiance of Christians (2Co_3:18).
The Old Covenant ministry of Moses brought death to people. It was not the fault of Moses or the Law, which was “holy, righteous, and good” (Rom_7:12; cf. 1Ti_1:8). It was the fault of human sin (Rom_7:10-11). Still even this ministry of death had a glory, though transitory and fading (cf. 2Co_3:11, 2Co_3:13), which was visually illustrated by the Old Covenant’s intended obsolescence. This is speaking of the fact that Moses' face shone so brightly from being in the presence of God {The Light}, that the people could not look upon him. This great Light was so bright that Moses had to cover his face with a veil to keep them from being blinded. Paul is saying, if that Light was so great in Moses, who brought the law; why do you not understand that the Light revealed in the New Testament is so much greater? The law brought death. The covenant sealed in Jesus blood brings everlasting life.                                                                                        When Moses came down from Mount Sinai with the tablets of the Ten Commandments, his face was so radiant that the people were afraid to approach him (Exo_34:29-30). A part of Jewish tradition maintained that Moses carried the glory of that encounter to his grave (Targum Onkelos; Deu_34:7).

2 Corinthians 3:8-11

On this point, the fading of Moses’ glory, Paul proceeded to argue for the superiority of the New Covenant. The ministry of the Old Covenant, by means of the commandments, condemned men (cf. Rom_7:11).
The ministry of the New, by means of the Spirit, leads men to faith in Christ and the imputation of His righteousness (Rom_3:21-22; Rom_4:24). By the law, all men have sinned and come short of the glory of God. We are all condemned by the law. Being in right standing with God comes from being washed in the blood of the Lamb {Jesus Christ}. The difference is, that where the law condemns man, the grace in Christ brings hope of everlasting life.
Ephesians 2:5 "Even when we were dead in sins, hath quickened us together with Christ, (by grace ye are saved ;)"
Romans 5:9 "Much more then, being now justified by his blood, we shall be saved from wrath through him." Remember, that "justified' means just as if I had never sinned. The law was good, but grace is better.
Romans 3:20 "Therefore by the deeds of the law there shall no flesh be justified in his sight: for by the law [is] the knowledge of sin."
Ephesians 2:8 "For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: [it is] the gift of God:"
What a glorious awakening, when the Spirit ministers to man. Like a candle before the sun the Old Covenant paled and passed away (Gal_3:19-25) before the grandeur of the New, which is eternal (Heb_13:20). If the Old is glorious, how much more glorious is the New! This glory, spoken of here is speaking of Moses' face was shining. The glory of the Lord far excelled the glory of Moses. There is nothing wrong with Moses or the law. The weakness was in man keeping the law.
Galatians 3:21 "Is the law then against the promises of God? God forbid for if there had been a law given which could have given life, verily righteousness should have been by the law."
John 1:17 "For the law was given by Moses, [but] grace and truth came by Jesus Christ." The Law of Moses was glorious, but man could not live up to that law and was lost. The grace of God, in Jesus Christ, brings life.

 2 Corinthians 3:12

Because the New Covenant is eternal its recipients had the certain hope of acceptance by God. This permitted Paul to be bold and candid in speech and action. The Old Testament, itself, was veiled and hard to understand, until the curtain was torn between the holy place and the holy of holies. When Jesus sent the Holy Spirit to the Christians, He was their Teacher and Guide. The Holy Spirit opens up our understanding to all Scriptures {Old and New Testament}. Jesus' teachings on the earth were all very simple. The gospel message is very simple. This plainness of speech was so that everyone could understand.
2 Corinthians 3:13

In contrast was the ministry of Moses who veiled his face as he addressed Israel so that they could not see the radiance (produced by those meetings with God) fading away. Why did he do this? Did Moses believe that the rebellious Israelites would be less inclined to obey God if they witnessed a diminishing of this awesome radiance? Or did Moses consider them unworthy recipients of this display of God’s glory and so veiled his face as a commentary on the hardness of their hearts? Perhaps it was the latter. The children of Israel could not look beyond the veil in the temple, or at Moses either. The way to God was veiled to them.
2 Corinthians 3:14-16

Whatever was Moses’ reason for using the veil, his action proved to be prophetic. Not only was ancient Israel unwilling or unable to comprehend (their minds were made dull) the transitory and preparatory nature of the Old Covenant, but the dullness remained with subsequent generations. The Jews of Paul’s day (to this day) failed to perceive that the Old Covenant was a preliminary message, not the final word of God’s revelation. Though the cloth that veiled Moses’ glory and the Old Covenant was gone, Paul said a perceptible spiritual veil remains and has not been removed (cf. 2Co_4:3-4; Rom_11:7-8, Rom_11:25).
The veil of unbelief that covers their hearts can be taken away only in Christ (2Co_3:14), that is, whenever anyone turns to the Lord. A person who reads just the Old Testament cannot truly understand, until you put it with the New Testament and realize the fulfillment in Jesus.
The Old Testament cannot be understood by physically reading it. This is speaking of the Old Testament being read in the temple, or synagogue. Without the Holy Spirit revealing the Word, it cannot be understood. It is understood through the revealing by the Holy Spirit of God. Moses removed his physical veil in the presence of the Lord.
So for any Jew or anyone who turns in faith to Christ the Lord his spiritual veil is removed. The Lord who mediated the Old Covenant is the same Lord who established the New. The main thing to understand, in this, is the simple message of Salvation in the gospels. God is revealed to man in His Son Jesus Christ. We see so clearly, God being revealed in Jesus Christ, in the following Scripture.
John 14:9 "Jesus saith unto him, have I been so long time with you, and yet hast thou not known me, Philip? he that hath seen me hath seen the Father; and how sayest thou [then], Shew us the Father?"
2 Corinthians 3:17

In the Old Covenant when Moses entered the Lord’s presence he removed his veil (Exo_34:34). In the New Covenant it is the Spirit who removes the veil. The Holy Spirit is the personal “Agent” of Christ; He is the Spirit of the Lord (cf. Rom_8:9). The Two are One in purpose (Joh_15:26; Joh_16:6-15) and in result (Rom_8:15; Gal_5:1). Paul’s words the Lord is the Spirit (2Co_3:17; cf. 2Co_3:18) do not confuse these two Persons of the Godhead. Instead, they affirm the Holy Spirit’s deity. John 4:24 "God [is] a Spirit: and they that worship him must worship [him] in spirit and in truth." "Spirit" in verse 17 above, is the God Spirit.
I John 5:7 "For there are three that bear record in heaven, the Father, the Word, and the Holy Ghost: and these three are one."
One, in this verse, is speaking of their Spirit nature.
Romans 8:9 "But ye are not in the flesh but in the Spirit if so be that the Spirit of God dwell in you, now if any man have not the Spirit of Christ, he is none of his."
The Spirit of the Risen Christ within me brings me liberty. I have liberty, because I am living in the perfect will of God.
Galatians 2:20 "I am crucified with Christ: nevertheless I live; yet not I, but Christ liveth in me: and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by the faith of the Son of God, who loved me, and gave himself for me." There is liberty in Christ.
A major result of the New Covenant is freedom. Elsewhere Paul compared those under the Old Covenant to children of slavery and those under the New to children of freedom (Gal_4:24-31). This freedom is possible because Christ has redeemed from the penalty of the Law those who believe so that they become children of God (Gal_4:5-7). This freedom as children is confirmed by the Spirit, who enables Christians to call God Father (Rom_8:15; Gal_4:6).
2 Corinthians 3:18

The glory evident in Moses’ face was a diminishing radiance (2Co_3:7, 2Co_3:13). By contrast, in the faces of Christians is God’s ever-increasing glory (cf. 2Co_4:6). (“Ever-increasing glory” is the NIVs rendering of the Gr. phrase, “from glory into glory,” i.e., from one stage of glory to another.) Christians’ glory, like that of Moses, is a reflection of the Lord’s glory. But unlike Moses’ transitory glory a believer’s glory is eternal. This is because of God’s abiding presence through the Holy Spirit (2Co_4:17). This glory is the experience of salvation available in the New Covenant and mediated by the Spirit who leads Christians from justification through sanctification to glorification. The more there is of Jesus in me the less of me in me. When I become so full of Christ that others can see Christ in me, then the Scripture above becomes more true in my life. Christians are becoming more like Jesus every day, or they are going back into the world. We never stand still. True Christianity is becoming more Christ-like every day. Christ in me, the hope of glory.
Romans 8:2 "For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus hath made me free from the law of sin and death."
I John 3:2 "Beloved, now are we the sons of God, and it doth not yet appear what we shall be: but we know that, when he shall appear, we shall be like him; for we shall see him as he is."
As believers manifest the fruit of the Spirit (Gal_5:22-23), they are progressively being transformed (the same word Paul used in Rom_12:2) into His likeness. Christ likeness is the goal of the Christian walk (Eph_4:23-24; Col_3:10). No wonder Paul said the New is far superior to the Old!