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2 Corinthians 3

can anyone please help me to understand?

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Asked by rhanford at 11:14 AM on Jan. 26, 2010 in Religion & Beliefs

Level 16 (2,581 Credits)
Answers (5)
  • The apostle shows, in opposition to his detractors, that the faith and salvation of the Corinthians were sufficient testimony of his Divine mission; that he needed no letters of recommendation, the Christian converts at Corinth being a manifest proof that he was an apostle of Christ, 1-3. He extols the Christian ministry, as being infinitely more excellent than that of Moses, 4-12. Compares the different modes of announcing the truth under the law and under the Gospel: in the former it was obscurely delivered; and the veil of darkness, typified by the veil which Moses wore, is still on the hearts of the Jews; but when they turn to Christ this veil shall be taken away, 13-16. On the contrary, the Gospel dispensation is spiritual; leads to the nearest views of heavenly things; and those who receive it are changed into the glorious likeness of God by the agency of his Spirit, 17, 18.


    Answer by RutterMama at 11:37 AM on Jan. 26, 2010

  • Verse 1. Do we begin again to commend ourselves] By speaking thus of our sincerity, Divine mission, &c., is it with a design to conciliate your esteem, or ingratiate ourselves in your affections? By no means.

    Or need we-epistles of commendation] Are we so destitute of ministerial abilities and Divine influence that we need, in order to be received in different Churches, to have letters of recommendation? Certainly not. God causes us to triumph through Christ in every place; and your conversion is such an evident seal to our ministry as leaves no doubt that God is with us.

    Letters of commendation] Were frequent in the primitive Church; and were also in use in the apostolic Church, as we learn from this place. But these were, in all probability, not used by the apostles; their helpers, successors, and those who had not the miraculous gifts of the Spirit, needed such letters and they were necessary to prevent the Churches

    Answer by RutterMama at 11:38 AM on Jan. 26, 2010

  • from being imposed on by false teachers. But when apostles came, they brought their own testimonials, the miraculous gifts of the Holy Spirit.

    Verse 2. Ye are our epistle] I bear the most ardent love to you. I have no need to be put in remembrance of you by any epistles or other means; ye are written in my heart-I have the most affectionate remembrance of you.

    Known and read of all men] For wherever I go I mention you; speak of your various gifts and graces; and praise your knowledge in the Gospel.

    Verse 3. Manifestly declared to be the epistle of Christ] Ye are in our hearts, and Christ has written you there; but yourselves are the epistle of Christ; the change produced in your hearts and lives, and the salvation which you have received, are as truly the work of Christ as a letter dictated and written by a man in his work.

    Answer by RutterMama at 11:41 AM on Jan. 26, 2010

  • Ministered by us] Ye are the writing, but Christ used me as the pen; Christ dictated, and I wrote; and the Divine characters are not made with ink, but by the Spirit of the living God; for the gifts and graces that constitute the mind that was in Christ are produced in you by the Holy Ghost.

    Not in tables of stone] Where men engrave contracts, or record events; but in fleshly tables of the heart-the work of salvation taking place in all your affections, appetites, and desires; working that change within that is so signally manifested without. See the parts of this figurative speech: 1.

    Jesus Christ dictates. The apostle writes. 3. The hearts of the Corinthians are the substance on which the writing is made. And, 4. The Holy Spirit produces that influence by which the traces are made, and the mark becomes evident. Here is not only an allusion to making inscriptions on stones, where one dictates the matter, and another

    Answer by RutterMama at 11:42 AM on Jan. 26, 2010

  • cuts the letters; (and probably there were certain cases where some colouring matter was used to make the inscription the more legible; and when the stone was engraved, it was set up in some public place, as monuments, inscriptions, and contracts were, that they might be seen, known, and read of all men;) but the apostle may here refer to the ten commandments, written by the finger of God upon two tables of stone; which writing was an evidence of the Divine mission of Moses, as the conversion of the Corinthians was an evidence of the mission of St. Paul. But it may be as well to take the words in a general sense, as the expression is not unfrequent either in the Old Testament, or in the rabbinical writers.

    Verse 4. Such trust have we] We have the fullest conviction that God has thus accredited our ministry; and that ye are thus converted unto him, and are monuments of his mercy, and proofs of the truth of our ministry.

    Answer by RutterMama at 11:42 AM on Jan. 26, 2010

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