3:7 But if the ministry that produced death – carved in letters on stone tablets 1 – came with glory, so that the Israelites 2 could not keep their eyes fixed on the face of Moses because of the glory of his face 3 (a glory 4 which was made ineffective), 5
1 tn Grk “on stones”; but since this is clearly an allusion to the tablets of the Decalogue (see 2 Cor 3:3) the word “tablets” was supplied in the translation to make the connection clear.
2 tn Grk “so that the sons of Israel.”
3 sn The glory of his face. When Moses came down from Mt. Sinai with the tablets of the Decalogue, the people were afraid to approach him because his face was so radiant (Exod 34:29-30).
4 tn The words “a glory” are not in the Greek text, but the reference to “glory” has been repeated from the previous clause for clarity.
5 tn Or “which was transitory.” Traditionally this phrase is translated as “which was fading away.” The verb καταργέω in the corpus Paulinum uniformly has the meaning “to render inoperative, ineffective”; the same nuance is appropriate here. The glory of Moses’ face was rendered ineffective by the veil Moses wore. For discussion of the meaning of this verb in this context, see S. J. Hafemann, Paul, Moses, and the History of Israel (WUNT 81), 301-13. A similar translation has been adopted in the two other occurrences of the verb in this paragraph in vv. 11 and 13.
6 tn Grk “the ministry of condemnation”; translated as an objective genitive, “the ministry that produced condemnation.”
7 tn Grk “the ministry of righteousness”; translated as an objective genitive, “the ministry that produces righteousness.”
8 tn Traditionally, “abound.”