Forasmuch as ye are manifestly declared to be the epistle of Christ ministered by us, written not with ink, but with the Spirit of the living God; not in tables of stone, but in fleshy tables of the heart. (2 Corinthians 3:3 KJV)
Paul, who wrote several epistles to different Churches, gives us an excellent analogy of the epistle(or letter) to explain who the believer is. Since letters were written with ink and paper(or parchments in his days), he explains the symbolic meaning of the writer, the ink, paper, message, recipients, and the mail delivery man!
An epistle is a letter written to someone( or group) containing a message using written words. In this epistle of Paul the Apostle to the Corinthians, Paul reveals the epistle of Jesus the Christ to the world! This letter is written by Jesus to be read by everyone( verse 2).
The paper on which this epistle is written is the hearts of people. Rather than using ink, Jesus used the Holy Spirit to write His message in our hearts. But what is the message? Jesus reveals who He is and His will to everyone. As revealed in the context of 2 Corinthians 4, this message is the glory of God. Anyone who sees the believer—or reads Christ’s letter— has seen Christ. We are His visible expression, revealing the glorious qualities of God. So if someone wants to see how loving Christ is, they just need to see us. Similarly, if they’re going to know God’s wisdom or power, they should simply read His epistle: see you and me.
This epistle was written by Jesus and delivered by the Apostles as mail delivery men. Today, ministers are those God has sent to minister the Holy Spirit to people. As ministers minister His Word, God writes His Spirit, imprints His nature as ink is written on paper, in people’s hearts, so that their lives become living written words expressing the Spirit!
You are an epistle, a statement from Christ, for the whole world to read. If the world does not read God’s Book, the Bible, or does not understand it, they have no choice but to read and understand His epistles—you and me!
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Please reread this great verse and think upon it again and again.
Apply the Word
You are a chosen generation called to show forth the praises of God; you are a visible manifestation of the invisible God. His nature is in your heart, and your life is an expression of His life. Let your light, our words and deed, reveal God to the world.
Thank the Lord for the incredible privilege of being called into this life of glory.