I looked at God’s promise of restoration to the nation of Israel. But what about our ministry under the New Covenant? Does God expect us to walk in a spirit of excellence?
If the ministry that condemns men is glorious, how much more glorious is the ministry that brings righteousness! For what was glorious has no glory now in comparison with the surpassing glory. And if what was fading away came with glory, how much greater is the glory of that which lasts!
Therefore, since we have such a hope, we are very bold.
II Corinthians 3:9-12
The two verses we looked at in the last post were from that former ministry that condemned men. The glory that God exhibited back then was indeed glorious. But Paul says in verse 10 that we are now living in the day when God wants to exhibit His excellent glory.
When I think about the glory He showed in the Old Testament, I wonder how it could be any better. He ordained a place of worship that was lined in gold. Even the utensils used in its service were mostly of gold and silver. The priests themselves were lavishly dressed – the high priest having precious stones on his garment.
But wait a minute. Remember, that excellence is not about things, but about spirit. It’s based on who you are. Do you excel beyond the normal and the expected? This is different for everyone.
In some places it might mean a large building and the latest technology. In other places around the world, however, excellence might mean a building with a roof that doesn’t leak. I’ve found that in some cultures, just starting a meeting on time is a mark of the spirit of excellence. Remember that it’s not the “what” of the ministry that makes it excellent, it is the “why.”
The preceding verse goes so far as to say that your boldness will be based on the excellence that your ministry exhibits. If you’re content with an “I’ll just get by” spirit, then it will show in your lack of boldness. But one who has learned to step out and believe God for that which is excellent, will be just as willing to believe Him in other areas of his life.
It’s only those who are bold for Christ who are willing to go beyond the normal church routine and enter the realm of the excellent. There are many that desire to be average, simply because they don’t want to attract attention. This is just the opposite of what God wants.
He’s looking for a people who will allow Him to shine through them. That should be our desire as well. Then the world will see and be attracted to the excellent glory of God revealed in us. Oh, that the Church would rise up in excellence and boldness, that the world might once again be turned upside down for the glory of God!
Question: How does excellence and boldness play a role in your life and ministry?
© Nick Zaccardi 2013