Friday, November 3, 2006

Reflecting His Glory

It's amazing what images you can see in a pooling of water!

I like this photo because of the reflection of the bare tree branches and blue sky overhead as the fallen leaves litter the water beneath. (Can you tell I've been on a nature motif lately?)

This photo is a good segue to Paul's Scripture:
And all of us, with faces uncovered, because we continue to reflect like mirrors the splendor of the Lord, are being transformed into likeness to Him, from one degree of splendor to another, since it comes from the Lord who is the Spirit. (2Co 3.18 WmsNT)
Let's break down Paul's thoughts together:

1. Our Christian faces, unlike the fading glory on Moses' face, keep their faces uncovered...
2. because we keep reflecting the shekinah, the glorious Presence of God...
3. and because we keep reflecting the glory, we are being transformed into his likeness...
4. which comes to us in stages...
5. by the Holy Spirit is the one who continually changes us.

Concerning the reflection of the glory, and the transformation of the Christian, Adam Clarke expounds in his Commentary:
The word κατοπτριζομενοι, catoptrizomenoi, acting on the doctrine of catoptries, which we translate beholding in a glass, comes from κατα, against, and οπτομαι, I look; and properly conveys the sense of looking into a mirror, or discerning by reflected light. Now as mirrors, among the Jews, Greeks, and Romans, were made of highly polished metal, (see the note on 1Co 13:12), it would often happen, especially in strong light, that the face would be greatly illuminated by this strongly reflected light; and to this circumstance the apostle seems here to allude.
Concerning the resultant transformation of the Christian, Clarke continues:
So, by earnestly contemplating the Gospel of Jesus, and believing on him who is its Author, the soul becomes illuminated with his Divine splendor, for this sacred mirror reflects back on the believing soul the image of Him whose perfections it exhibits; and thus we see the glorious form after which our minds are to be fashioned; and by believing and receiving the influence of his Spirit, μεταμορφουμεθα, our form is changed, την αυτην εικονα, into the same image, which we behold there; and this is the image of God, lost by our fall, and now recovered and restored by Jesus Christ: for the shining of the face of God upon us, i.e. approbation, through Christ, is the cause of our transformation into the Divine image.
Reflect his glory, Christian!