Paul returns to the event in Exodus 34:29-35, which he referred to in verse 7. After Moses had met with God, his face was shining. The people were afraid to see it, so Moses covered his face. They were afraid of the power that they saw in Godís commands. They were afraid of his judgement against their evil deeds.
On the other hand, Paul was not ashamed of the power that he saw in Godís message, the gospel*. He wanted everyone to see it*, although many of them only laughed at it*. So Paul declared about Christ and his death to everyone*.
That did not mean, of course, that everyone believed. Godís message, his good news, is for everyone, but some people cannot see it. Godís judgement is against those people because of their evil deeds*. Paul gives two separate explanations of this. He may be referring to different groups of people, but the same reasons are true about both groups.
(1) 2 Corinthians 3:14-16 refers to people who hear Godís words in the Bible. Paul refers especially to some people from Israel who did not believe God. However, many people who consider themselves Christians also do not believe God; these words are true about them too. They hear the word of God, but they refuse to believe it. It is as if something covers their minds. They cannot see (understand) the truth. Paul says that their minds are too hard. It is like when someone tries to cut a message into hard rock with a knife. It seems impossible to make any impression on their minds.
(2) 2 Corinthians 4:4 refers to people from all nations who cannot see (understand) Godís message. It is as if the devil has made them blind. So they cannot see the things that should be very clear to them. They cannot see how beautiful and wonderful is Godís message about Christ.
God desires very much for people in both groups to turn to him.
* See complete article for these Bible references.
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© 2016, Keith Simons.