2 Corinthians 3:7-12
2 Cor 3:7 (KJB)
But if the ministration of death, written and engraven in stones, was glorious, so that the children of Israel could not stedfastly behold the face of Moses for the glory of his countenance; which glory was to be done away:
Ministration - Service or ministry
Paul now continues the contrast between the law and the Spirit. He is in no way stating that the law was bad because it was designed to bring us to Christ for salvation. The law also never negated any of the promises of God. (Gal 3:21 KJV) Is the law then against the promises of God? God forbid: for if there had been a law given which could have given life, verily righteousness should have been by the law. The law had its own glory as did the Covenant of Grace. Those false teachers in Corinth were accusing Paul of despising the law and Paul had never done that. Paul taught that the law could never save anyone but it was designed to bring us to Christ.
(Exo 34:29-30 KJV) And it came to pass, when Moses came down from mount Sinai with the two tables of testimony in Moses' hand, when he came down from the mount, that Moses wist not that the skin of his face shone while he talked with him. {30} And when Aaron and all the children of Israel saw Moses, behold, the skin of his face shone; and they were afraid to come nigh him. The law, as given to Moses on Mt. Sinai and as a result of receiving that law, his face had shined because he stood in the presence of the glory of God. The children of Israel had spoken with Moses but only after he placed a veil over his face. However, this glory of the law was only temporary because when the Lord Jesus Christ went to the cross, the new covenant would be that of grace. (Heb 8:8 KJV) For finding fault with them, he saith, Behold, the days come, saith the Lord, when I will make a new covenant with the house of Israel and with the house of Judah: The fault the Lord found was that Israel could not keep the law and God was going to bring in the covenant of Grace, which would be the eternal covenant.
2 Cor 3:8 (KJB)
How shall not the ministration of the spirit be rather glorious?
Ministration - Service
Rather - More than or much
If the face of Moses had shown so gloriously because he received the law, Paul now asks the question, if Moses experienced glory, how shall not the ministry of the Spirit be much more glorious? The ministry of the Spirit is the eternal covenant and compared to the temporary covenant, it would have much more glory. The law had ministered death to those who tried to keep it but the Spirit ministers eternal pardon for sins, peace with God, heirs of God in Christ and so much more on an eternal basis.
2 Cor 3:9 (KJB)
For if the ministration of condemnation be glory, much more doth the ministration of righteousness exceed in glory.
Ministration - Service
Condemnation - A judgment against
More - Much more than
Exceed - To be superior or more than enough
Here Paul furthers the comparison. He states that the ministry of condemnation, which was the law that condemned every human being on earth, if it was glorious then the ministration that brings eternal life, which is of the Spirit, will far exceed the glory of the law. Trying to keep the law could never bring one into righteousness but the new covenant of Grace makes a person righteous from the moment they become saved.
2 Cor 3:10 (KJB)
For even that which was made glorious had no glory in this respect, by reason of the glory that excelleth.
Excelleth - Surpassing
What makes the glory of the Covenant of grace surpassing? When Moses came down from Mt. Sinai, his face had shone with the glory of God but that glory was short lived and eventually Moses had died. The glory of the new Covenant was made by the Lord Jesus Christ on Calvary and that glory will never die, because He is eternal. (Heb 7:25 KJV) Wherefore he is able also to save them to the uttermost that come unto God by him, seeing he ever liveth to make intercession for them. Moses had died after 120 years but the Lord Jesus Christ is alive forever more to make intercession for us. One of the great glories of the new Covenant is its tenet of being eternal in nature and this surpasses the temporary covenant of Sinai.
2 Cor 3:11 (KJB)
For if that which is done away was glorious, much more that which remaineth is glorious.
That which is done away - Abolished, done away with, or nullified
Remaineth - Abide, be permanent, or continue
This verse is similar to verse 9 as Paul states that the law which condemns has been abolished for the covenant of Calvary. If the first covenant was glorious and it has been done away with, then that covenant of Grace which is eternal in nature will definitely be glorious, way beyond the glory of the old covenant.
2 Cor 3:12 (KJB)
Seeing then that we have such hope, we use great plainness of speech:
Plainness of speech - Outspokenness, boldness, unreservedness in speech
Here Paul is stating that since the true believer has such hope within that eternal covenant, that he is using plainness of speech, that is, boldness in his proclamation of the new covenant. He is not being reserved in the sense that he is fearful to speak about the truth concerning the greater glory of the second and final covenant. This should also be the attitude of the believer, that no matter what religion they are up against, there should be a great boldness to speak about the superiority of the covenant of grace and how it is through this covenant that one can only be saved.