Today we continue our mini-series entitled “A New Dimension of Glory!” This series is under the overall theme for the year: “GREAT FREEDOM.” We have been looking at a fairly long passage in 2 Corinthians 3 for a while. The latter portion of the passage we have been studying says:
(2 Corinthians 3:17&18 Easy to Read Version)
17 The Lord is the Spirit, and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is freedom.
18 And our faces are not covered. We all show the Lord’s glory, and we are being changed to be like him. This change in us brings more and more glory, which comes from the Lord, who is the Spirit.
Our last message focused on verse 18. I keyed in on the fact that we are called to be reflections of God in this world. Today we will go back to verse 18 and focus on the portion that talks about us being CHANGED into the image of God. I will share it with you in several translations. Please read these carefully and prayerfully.
(2 Cor 3:18 New International Version)
And we all, who with unveiled faces contemplate the Lord’s glory, are being transformed into his image with ever-increasing glory, which comes from the Lord, who is the Spirit.
(2 Cor 3:18 New Living Translation)
So all of us who have had that veil removed can see and reflect the glory of the Lord. And the Lord—who is the Spirit—makes us more and more like him as we are changed into his glorious image.
(2 Cor 3:18 J.B. Phillip New Testament)
But all of us who are Christians have no veils on our faces, but reflect like mirrors the glory of the Lord. We are transfigured by the Spirit of the Lord in ever-increasing splendour into his own image.
(2 Cor 3:18 The Passion Translation)
We can all draw close to him with the veil removed from our faces. And with no veil we all become like mirrors who brightly reflect the glory of the Lord Jesus. We are being transfigured into his very image as we move from one brighter level of glory to another. And this glorious transfiguration comes from the Lord, who is the Spirit.
So what does this mean for you today? A few things.
1. When you come to God there is a clear distinction between you and Him. The goal is for mentality to change.
a) When you first came to God, if you were anything like me, you were nothing like Him. Your words, your thoughts, and your actions were worldly and not Godly. But then, over time, the more you learn to discern the voice of the Holy Spirit, the more Word you get down in your heart, and the more you obey what you are learning, the more you become like God in this world.
b) Each believer is called to pursue his/her specific and unique purpose. But in addition to our specific assignment, we all have a general assignment as well. This general assignment is to reflect the image of God and His God’s glory in this world. This does not happen until you allow yourself to be changed!
c) When you first start walking with God, you see Him as ‘high and lifted up’. You see a world of difference between the way you think, speak and act, and the way God does. But the goal is to change. Over time, the more you die to self and grow in Christ, the more Christ is able to be seen, heard, and felt THROUGH you.
d) You have to get to the point where you see yourself the way God sees you. If you can ever believe what God believes about you, you can become the man/woman God has called you to be. But you have to SEE YOURSELF this way first. You must SEE IT to BE IT. Your legs will never take you where your mind has never been. If you can’t SEE IT in your mind or in your heart, you will never experience it in this world.
e) If you keep walking with God long enough, and you keep growing (or dying to self) as you do, eventually you will look in the mirror and see JESUS! You will see yourself “As Jesus is, in this world!” (1 John 4:17). This is the goal. While it is true that at first you don’t see yourself like God, we must strive to get to this place. You want to be able to think and act like Jesus. Jesus said, “The Father lives in me. He gives me the words and He performs the work… if you have seen me, You have seen the Father.” (see John 14). This is how we are supposed to think and live. You must graduate to the point where you see yourself as ONE WITH GOD! When you get to this point, there is nothing you can’t do. Because you know there is nothing God can’t do, and He lives IN you!
2. The more time you spend with God in His presence, the more you are CHANGED into His image and likeness.
a) As humans, we were created in the very image and likeness of God (Gen 1:26). We may not know it initially, but we actually look like our Father. After we are Born-Again, the Holy Spirit begins to teach us how to act like Him in this world.
b) You are called to be CHANGED into the very image of God in this world. The Bible says, “For those God foreknew he also predestined to be conformed to the image of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brothers and sisters. And those he predestined, he also called; those he called, he also justified; those he justified, he also glorified.” (Romans 8:29,30). When you came to God you looked and acted like the world. But the more you walk with God, the more you realize that you are actually called to be conformed into the image of His Son. You are supposed to be a walking/talking representative of Jesus in this world. In order to become this, in order to be changed into His image and likeness, you must spend time with Him. The more time you spend in his presence, the more you are changed into the image you see IN HIM!
c) In our text (2 Cor 3:18), we learn that the more we behold the glory of the God that comes with the New Covenant (through the Holy Spirit), the more we are changed into the image we behold. We literally BECOME what we BEHOLD. This is true for God and for other things as well. Whatever we give our attention to continually is what we will display consistently. So, if you don’t like what you are becoming, you have to take a look at what you are beholding. Garbage IN, garbage OUT! Righteousness IN, righteousness OUT! In order to truly become a conduit of God’s glory in this world, you must meditate and medicate on God’s Word day and night. The more you do, the more God will be seen, heard and experienced through you!
That’s enough for today.
Declaration of Faith:
Father, I am called to represent You on this planet. I declare that I will. While it is true that when I first came to You I did not see myself like You, those days are over. I meditate and medicate on your Word day and night. I spend time in your presence every day. I walk with You and You walk with me. So now, when I look in the mirror, I SEE YOU! I believe what You believe about me. I see, IN ME, what You see, IN ME, and that is YOU! There is no separation between me and YOU! I am ONE with God. As Jesus is, so am I, in this world. So, as I enter this day and this week, I am ready to live as an IMAGE on my God on this planet! I declare this by faith. In Jesus’ name. Amen!
This is Today’s Word. Apply it and prosper!