How does the New Covenant relate to the Old? That is a key question of this chapter.
In II Corinthians 3, Paul describes the Covenant of Law through Moses as "engraved in letters on stone," "fading glory," "veiled," and "condemns man." This is in contrast to the Covenant of Grace through Christ which is "written with the Spirit on tablets of human hearts," "surpassing glory," "unveiled," and "brings righteousness."
In Paul's view, the Old Covenant has glory, but it is a temporary and passing glory. The glory of the New Covenant exceeds it in every way, for it is greater and eternal.