Contrasted with Moses as the sole representative of the people.
Open ( ἀνακεκαλυμμένῳ )
Rev., correctly, unveiled, as Moses when the veil was removed.
“Vainly they tried the deeps to sound
E'en of their own prophetic thought,
When of Christ crucified and crown'd
His Spirit in them taught:
But He their aching gaze repress'd
Which sought behind the veil to see,
For not without us fully bless'd
Or perfect might they be.
The rays of the Almighty's face
No sinner's eye might then receive
Only the meekest man found grace
To see His skirts and live.
But we as in a glass espy
The glory of His countenance,
Not in a whirlwind hurrying by
The too presumptuous glance,
But with mild radiance every hour
From our dear Savior's face benign
Bent on us with transforming power,
Till we, too, faintly shine.
Sprinkled with His atoning blood
Safely before our God we stand,
As on the rock the prophet stood,
Beneath His shadowing hand.”
Keble, “Christian Year,” Thirteenth Sunday after Trinity.
Beholding as in a glass ( κατοπτριζόμενοι )
So American Rev. Rev., reflecting. Only here in the New Testament. The verb in the active voice means to show in a mirror; to cause to be reflected. In the middle voice, to took at or behold one's self in a mirror. Rev., reflecting seems to be preferred on internal grounds, as better suiting the comparison with the divine glory as mirrored in the unveiled face of Moses. But this is unwarranted by usage. Stanley, who adopts this rendering, admits that there is no actual instance of the sense of reflecting. This sense, however, is not sacrificed by the translation beholding, but is conveyed by the succeeding clause, changed into the same image, etc. As Heinrici observes, beholding expresses the fact from which the process of change into God's image proceeds. When Moses beheld Jehovah's glory, his own face reflected that glory. The mirror is the Gospel, which is called the Gospel of the glory of Christ, 2 Corinthians 4:4.
Are changed ( μεταμορφούμεθα )
Rev., transformed. See on Matthew 17:2. The present tense expresses the change as in progress; are being changed, which is further defined by from glory to glory.
The same image ( τὴν αὐτὴν εἰκόνα )
See on Revelation 13:14. Compare especially 1 John 3:2; also Romans 8:29; John 17:24; Colossians 3:4; Romans 8:17; 1 Corinthians 15:48-53.
By the Spirit of the Lord ( ἀπὸ Κυρίου πνεύματος )
Better, as Rev., from the Lord the Spirit. Compare 2 Corinthians 3:17. The preposition ἀπό fromdepicts the transformation as proceeding from rather than as caused by.