Paul was keen to stress the importance of letting the Holy Spirit shine forth in the actions of all believers. There were two levels on which this idea of the veil mattered to Paul. Firstly, he wanted to illustrate how it feels when the Holy Spirit comes upon a believer and reveals the truth of Jesus in their hearts. He likened it to having a veil removed from their minds, which had previously, prevented them from understanding the writings of Moses in the old testament. It is still true in our day, thousands of years on from Paul, that the Jews are still not able to accept the truth that the old testament reveals Jesus as the messiah. Also many would be believers find it very difficult to understand the relevance of the old testament in relationship to the new covenant. In fact the whole bible is veiled in mystery and contradiction to many people these days. Secondly, Paul wanted to encourage believers to open up their hearts to host the presence of the Holy Spirit, to the point that his presence would literally overflow and shine out of them. This is what happened to Moses (Exodus 34:33-35) and Jesus himself at the transfiguration (Mark 9:2-3)
2 Corinthians 3:11-18 NLT
So if the old way, which has been replaced, was glorious, how much more glorious is the new, which remains forever! Since this new way gives us such confidence, we can be very bold. We are not like Moses, who put a veil over his face so the people of Israel would not see the glory, even though it was destined to fade away. But the people’s minds were hardened, and to this day whenever the old covenant is being read, the same veil covers their minds so they cannot understand the truth. And this veil can be removed only by believing in Christ. Yes, even today when they read Moses’ writings, their hearts are covered with that veil, and they do not understand. But whenever someone turns to the Lord, the veil is taken away. For the Lord is the Spirit, and wherever the Spirit of the Lord is, there is freedom. 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.
I think it is important to be, as Paul says, very bold in this new way. My goal today is to claim the power of Jesus in me. I want to open my heart to be filled to overflowing with his advocate, the Holy Spirit. My sincere hope, is that given a little time to learn God’s new way, and having had the veil of disbelief lifted by Jesus, I might abandon my old, sinful ways, and become acceptable enough to God to host his Spirit, that it might be a light to show others the truth of God’s love. I want to remember the gift of access to the Lord that Jesus gave us at the moment of his death – (Matthew 27:51)
Job 31:1-33:33, 2 Corinthians 3:1-18, Psalms 43:1-5, Proverbs 22:8-9