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2 Corinthians 3:6–9

Who also hath made us able dmministers of nthe new nntestament; not of othe letter, but of the spirit: for pthe letter killeth, but qthe spirit ||giveth life. But if pthe ministration of death, hwritten and engraven in stones, rwas glorious, rso that the children of Israel could not sstedfastly behold the face of Moses for tthe glory of his countenance; which glory was to be udone away: How shall not the ministration of the spirit be rather glorious? For if vthe ministration of condemnation be glory, much more doth wthe ministration of righteousness exceed in glory.

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2 Corinthians 3:6–9 — The New International Version (NIV)

He has made us competent as ministers of a new covenant—not of the letter but of the Spirit; for the letter kills, but the Spirit gives life.

Now if the ministry that brought death, which was engraved in letters on stone, came with glory, so that the Israelites could not look steadily at the face of Moses because of its glory, transitory though it was, will not the ministry of the Spirit be even more glorious? If the ministry that brought condemnation was glorious, how much more glorious is the ministry that brings righteousness!

2 Corinthians 3:6–9 — English Standard Version (ESV)

who has made us sufficient to be ministers of a new covenant, not of the letter but of the Spirit. For the letter kills, but the Spirit gives life.

Now if the ministry of death, carved in letters on stone, came with such glory that the Israelites could not gaze at Moses’ face because of its glory, which was being brought to an end, will not the ministry of the Spirit have even more glory? For if there was glory in the ministry of condemnation, the ministry of righteousness must far exceed it in glory.

2 Corinthians 3:6–9 — New Living Translation (NLT)

He has enabled us to be ministers of his new covenant. This is a covenant not of written laws, but of the Spirit. The old written covenant ends in death; but under the new covenant, the Spirit gives life.

The old way, with laws etched in stone, led to death, though it began with such glory that the people of Israel could not bear to look at Moses’ face. For his face shone with the glory of God, even though the brightness was already fading away. Shouldn’t we expect far greater glory under the new way, now that the Holy Spirit is giving life? If the old way, which brings condemnation, was glorious, how much more glorious is the new way, which makes us right with God!

2 Corinthians 3:6–9 — The New King James Version (NKJV)

who also made us sufficient as ministers of the new covenant, not of the letter but of the Spirit; for the letter kills, but the Spirit gives life.

But if the ministry of death, written and engraved on stones, was glorious, so that the children of Israel could not look steadily at the face of Moses because of the glory of his countenance, which glory was passing away, how will the ministry of the Spirit not be more glorious? For if the ministry of condemnation had glory, the ministry of righteousness exceeds much more in glory.

2 Corinthians 3:6–9 — New Century Version (NCV)

He made us able to be servants of a new agreement from himself to his people. This new agreement is not a written law, but it is of the Spirit. The written law brings death, but the Spirit gives life.

The law that brought death was written in words on stone. It came with God’s glory, which made Moses’ face so bright that the Israelites could not continue to look at it. But that glory later disappeared. So surely the new way that brings the Spirit has even more glory. If the law that judged people guilty of sin had glory, surely the new way that makes people right with God has much greater glory.

2 Corinthians 3:6–9 — American Standard Version (ASV 1901)

who also made us sufficient as ministers of a new covenant; not of the letter, but of the spirit: for the letter killeth, but the spirit giveth life. But if the ministration of death, written, and engraven on stones, came with glory, so that the children of Israel could not look stedfastly upon the face of Moses for the glory of his face; which glory was passing away: how shall not rather the ministration of the spirit be with glory? For if the ministration of condemnation hath glory, much rather doth the ministration of righteousness exceed in glory.

2 Corinthians 3:6–9 — 1890 Darby Bible (DARBY)

who has also made us competent, as ministers of the new covenant; not of letter, but of spirit. For the letter kills, but the Spirit quickens. (But if the ministry of death, in letters, graven in stones, began with glory, so that the children of Israel could not fix their eyes on the face of Moses, on account of the glory of his face, a glory which is annulled; how shall not rather the ministry of the Spirit subsist in glory? For if the ministry of condemnation be glory, much rather the ministry of righteousness abounds in glory.

2 Corinthians 3:6–9 — GOD’S WORD Translation (GW)

He has also qualified us to be ministers of a new promise,a spiritual promise, not a written one. Clearly, what was written brings death, but the Spirit brings life. 

The ministry that brought death was inscribed on stone. Yet, it came with such glory that the people of Israel couldn’t look at Moses’ face. His face was shining with glory, even though that glory was fading. Won’t the ministry that brings the Spirit have even more glory? If the ministry that brings punishment has glory, then the ministry that brings God’s approval has an overwhelming glory.

2 Corinthians 3:6–9 — The Holman Christian Standard Bible (HCSB)

He has made us competent to be ministers of a new covenant, not of the letter, but of the Spirit. For the letter kills, but the Spirit produces life.

Now if the ministry of death, chiseled in letters on stones, came with glory, so that the Israelites were not able to look directly at Moses’ face because of the glory from his face—a fading glory— how will the ministry of the Spirit not be more glorious? For if the ministry of condemnation had glory, the ministry of righteousness overflows with even more glory.

2 Corinthians 3:6–9 — The New Revised Standard Version (NRSV)

who has made us competent to be ministers of a new covenant, not of letter but of spirit; for the letter kills, but the Spirit gives life.

Now if the ministry of death, chiseled in letters on stone tablets, came in glory so that the people of Israel could not gaze at Moses’ face because of the glory of his face, a glory now set aside, how much more will the ministry of the Spirit come in glory? For if there was glory in the ministry of condemnation, much more does the ministry of justification abound in glory!

2 Corinthians 3:6–9 — The Lexham English Bible (LEB)

who also makes us adequate as servants of a new covenant, not of the letter, but of the Spirit, for the letter kills, but the Spirit gives life.

But if the ministry of death in letters carved on stone came with glory, so that the sons of Israel were not able to look intently into the face of Moses because of the glory of his face, which was transitory, how will the ministry of the Spirit not be even more with glory? For if there was glory in the ministry of condemnation, by much more will the ministry of righteousness overflow with glory.

2 Corinthians 3:6–9 — New International Reader’s Version, 1998 ed. (NIrV) (NIrV)

He has given us the power to serve under a new covenant. The covenant is not based on the written Law of Moses. It comes from the Holy Spirit. The written Law kills, but the Spirit gives life.

The Law was written in letters on stone. Even though it was a way of serving God, it led to death. But even that way of serving God came with glory. And even though the glory was fading, the people of Israel couldn’t look at Moses’ face very long.

Since all of that is true, won’t the work of the Holy Spirit be even more glorious? The Law that sentences people to death is glorious. How much more glorious is the work of the Spirit! His work makes people right with God.

2 Corinthians 3:6–9 — New American Standard Bible: 1995 Update (NASB95)

who also made us adequate as servants of a new covenant, not of the letter but of the Spirit; for the letter kills, but the Spirit gives life.

But if the ministry of death, in letters engraved on stones, came with glory, so that the sons of Israel could not look intently at the face of Moses because of the glory of his face, fading as it was,

how will the ministry of the Spirit fail to be even more with glory?

For if the ministry of condemnation has glory, much more does the ministry of righteousness abound in glory.