"God's intention and desire to bless humanity is a central focus of his covenant relationships. For this reason, the concept of blessing pervades the biblical record. Two distinct ideas are present. First, a blessing was a public declaration of a favored status with God. Second, the blessing endowed power for prosperity and success. In all cases, the blessing served as a guide and motivation to pursue a course of life within the blessing.
The Old Testament: Terms for blessing abound in the Old Testament, occurring over 600 times. The major terms are related to the word meaning "to kneel, " since in earlier times one would kneel to receive a blessing.
The New Testament:The parallels between the Old and New Testament usages of blessing are striking. To be blessed is to be granted special favor by God with resulting joy and prosperity. In the New Testament, however, the emphasis is more on spiritual rather than on material blessings.
God's promise to Abraham again serves as a foundation for blessings. The pledge that "all peoples on earth shall be blessed" ( Gen 12:3 ) is fulfilled in the person and work of Jesus Christ ( Ga 3:8-14 ). He has borne the consequences of the curse for believers ( Gal 3:13 ) and blessed them with the forgiveness of sins ( Rom 4:6-9 ; see Psalm 32:1-2 ). Believers are "blessed with every spiritual blessing in Christ" ( Eph 1:3 ) and now inherit the blessings promised through the patriarchs ( Hebrews 6:12 Hebrews 6:15 ; 12:17 ; 1 Peter 3:9 ).
As a result of receiving God's blessings in Christ, believers are called to be a source of blessing to the world, especially in response to those who persecute them ( Luke 6:27-28 ; Rom 12:14 ; 1 Cor 4:12 ; 1 Peter 3:9 ; cf. Isa 19:24 ; Zech 8:13 ). In a general sense, the terms for blessing in the New Testament are used to designate that one is favored by God.
Included among these are Jesus ( Mark 11:9-10 ); children ( Mark 10:13-16 ); Mary ( Luke 1:42 Luke 1:48 ); the disciples ( Luke 24:50 ); those who "have not seen and yet have believed" ( John 20:29 ); and those who endure trials ( James 1:12 ; 5:11 ). As in the Old Testament, when these words are ascribed to God they are rendered "praise" ( Rom 1:25 ; 9:5 ; 2 Cor 11:31 ). The most recognizable references to blessing come from the teachings of Jesus.
He declares that in spite of difficulties at the present time, the promises of God's salvation and coming kingdom bring a state of happiness and recognized favor with God ( Matt 5:3-10 ; Luke 6:20-22 ). The culmination of the Scriptures proclaims the end of the curse ( Rev 22:3 ) and the eternal blessedness of the people of God ( Rev 20:6 ; 22:7 )."
*Copyright Permission by William E Brown
Some of you have been partnering with us since Cathy & I started ministry in 1979; and today we thank God for your prayers, your patience, your love, and your friendship! You are a blessing!
JPM embraces the teaching of BLESSINGS this Mother’s Day Weekend! We continue to work with God’s blessings to our orphans, our foster children/programs, and the outreach to our friends throughout the world! We also have a thankful heart for you & your family. THANK YOU!
We ask that you will remember our children and families who are in need throughout the world where we're currently serving – Mexico, Zimbabwe, Kenya, Nicaragua, Honduras, Bahamas, and the domestic regions of the United States. Your support and prayers is truly a blessing. At the same time please call/contact JPM in how we might serve you.