“Now the Lord is the Spirit, and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is freedom” (v17). Some Corinthians were apparently questioning Paul’s authority (v1) in response to his letters correcting their behavior. Paul reminded them that their own inclusion in God’s family by faith in Christ was his best recommendation (v2-3). The Old Testament with its laws and hierarchical structures had a certain glory, but it has ended (v9-11); the Spirit’s law, written on the hearts of all believers, far surpasses it.
Paul warned believers not to give up their freedom in Christ to go back to obsolete religious structures. In Christ, we have the freedom to approach the Father with “unveiled faces” (v18).