Bible Verse Explanations and Resources


2 Corinthians 3:16

Adam Clarke
Bible Commentary

When it shall turn to the Lord - When the Israelitish nation shall turn to the Lord Jesus, the veil shall be taken away; the true light shall shine; and they shall see all things clearly.

There is an evident allusion here to the case of Moses, mentioned Exodus 34:34. When he came from the Lord, and spoke to the Israelites, he put the veil over his face; but when he returned to speak with the Lord, then he took off the veil. So, when the Israelitish nation shall return to speak with and pray to the Lord Jesus, the veil of darkness and ignorance shall be taken away from their hearts; but never before that time. The words seem to imply:

  1. That there will be a conversion of the Jews to Christianity; and,

2. That this conversion will be en masse; that a time will come when the whole nation of the Jews, in every place, shall turn to Christ; and then the Gentiles and Jews make one fold, under one Shepherd and Bishop of all souls.

Albert Barnes
Notes on the Whole Bible

Nevertheless - This is not always to continue. The time is coming when they shall understand their own Scriptures, and see their true beauty.

When it shall turn to the Lord - When the Jewish people shall be converted. The word “it” here refers undoubtedly to “Israel” in 2 Corinthians 3:13; and the sense is, that their blindness is not always to remain; there is to be a period when they shall turn to God, and shall understand his promises, and become acquainted with the true nature of their own religion. This subject the apostle has discussed at much greater length in the eleventh chapter of the Epistle to the Romans; see the notes on that chapter.

The vail shall be taken away - They shall then understand the true meaning of the prophecies, and the true nature of their own institutions. They shall see that they refer to the Lord Jesus, the incarnate Son of God, and the true Messiah. The genuine sense of their sacred oracles shall break upon their view with full and irresistible light. There may be an allusion in the language here to the declaration in Isaiah 25:7, “And he will destroy in this mountain the face of the covering cast over all people, and the vail that is spread over all nations.” This verse teaches:

(1) That the time will come when the Jews shall be converted to Christianity; expressed here by their turning unto the Lord, that is, the Lord Jesus; see the note, Acts 1:24.

(2) it seems to be implied that their conversion will be a conversion of “the people” at large; a conversion that shall be nearly simultaneous; a conversion “en masse.” Such a conversion we have reason to anticipate of the Jewish nation.

(3) the effect of this will be to make them acquainted with the true sense of their own Scriptures, and the light and beauty of the sayings of their own prophets, Now they are in deep darkness on the sub ject; then they will see how entirely they meet and harmonize in the Lord Jesus.

(4) the true and only way of having a correct and full meaning of the Bible is by turning unto God. Love to Him, and a disposition to do His will, is the best means of interpreting the Bible.

Matthew Henry
Concise Bible Commentary
It is the duty of the ministers of the gospel to use great plainness, or clearness, of speech. The Old Testament believers had only cloudy and passing glimpses of that glorious Saviour, and unbelievers looked no further than to the outward institution. But the great precepts of the gospel, believe, love, obey, are truths stated as clearly as possible. And the whole doctrine of Christ crucified, is made as plain as human language can make it. Those who lived under the law, had a veil upon their hearts. This veil is taken away by the doctrines of the Bible about Christ. When any person is converted to God, then the veil of ignorance is taken away. The condition of those who enjoy and believe the gospel is happy, for the heart is set at liberty to run the ways of God's commandments. They have light, and with open face they behold the glory of the Lord. Christians should prize and improve these privileges. We should not rest contented without knowing the transforming power of the gospel, by the working of the Spirit, bringing us to seek to be like the temper and tendency of the glorious gospel of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ, and into union with Him. We behold Christ, as in the glass of his word; and as the reflection from a mirror causes the face to shine, the faces of Christians shine also.
Ellen G. White
Selected Messages Book 1, 236-40

Christ and the Law

[This article appeared in The Review and Herald, April 22, 1902.]

Read in context »
Ellen G. White
SDA Bible Commentary, vol. 6 (EGW), 1094-7

4. Paul a Friend of the Erring—The apostle Paul found it necessary to reprove wrong in the church, but he did not lose his self-control in reproving error. He anxiously explains the reason of his action. How carefully he wrought so as to leave the impression that he was a friend of the erring! He made them understand that it cost him pain to give them pain. He left the impression upon their minds that his interest was identified with theirs [2 Corinthians 2:4 quoted] (Letter 16a, 1895). 6BC 1094.1

Read in context »
Ellen G. White
Early Writings, 213

The blood of Christ and of the disciples, whom they had put to death, was upon them, and they were visited with terrible judgments. The curse of God followed them, and they were a byword and a derision to the heathen and to so-called Christians. They were degraded, shunned, and detested, as if the brand of Cain were upon them. Yet I saw that God had marvelously preserved this people and scattered them over the world that they might be looked upon as specially visited by the curse of God. I saw that God had forsaken the Jews as a nation; but that individuals among them will yet be converted and be enabled to tear the veil from their hearts and see that the prophecy concerning them has been fulfilled; they will receive Jesus as the Saviour of the world and see the great sin of their nation in rejecting and crucifying Him. EW 213.1

Read in context »
More Comments