~The Blessing ~ What IS the blessing and how does understanding the blessing empower us in our prayer life?
The first thing God does after He creates man is bless Him (Gen 1:28). He then goes onto say “be fruitful, increase in number, fill the earth and subdue it.” God is in the business of setting us up for success; and equally important to know, is that without His blessing, we could never do what He called us to do anyway. Before He gives any directives, He empowers us to do that which He calls us to do.
The word Jesus uses for “blessing” in the Greek is “makários.” You can study this out in the Strong’s Concordance (G3107).
Here’s what Strong’s says:
Makários (from mak-, “become long, large”) – properly, when God extends His benefits (the advantages He confers); blessed.
3107 /makários (“blessed”) describes a believer in enviable (“fortunate”) position from receiving God’s provisions (favor) – which (literally) extend (“make long, large”) His grace (benefits). This happens with receiving (obeying) the Lord’s inbirthings of faith. Hence, faith (4102 /pístis) and 3107 (makários) are closely associated (Ro 4:5-7,14:22,23; Rev 14:12,13).
blessed, happy, joined to the names of God
The blessing is an empowerment. Every place in the bible you see someone “blessing” another person, they are empowering them. A father, before he died, would bless his children, proclaiming an empowerment over them, often along with a declaration over their life. Even Jacob, when he is reunited with Joseph, blesses Pharoah? (Gen 47:7) Wait, Pharoah? Why would Joseph bless Pharoah? Now keep in mind there are several men named “Pharoah” in the bible. This particular Pharoah, though still representing Egypt, showed favor to Joseph, Jacob’s son, and even gave him the position of being his right hand man over the entire kingdom. We of course know it was God who positioned Joseph here, but Pharoah was a part of God making provision for Jacob, Joseph, and his family. I’d say that’s a good reason to bless someone. The Israelites didn’t take “the blessing” lightly and understood and saw the fruit of the blessing in their lives. Jacob blessed Pharoah with a thankful heart.
Deut 30:19 says: “I call heaven and earth to witness against you today, that I have set before you life and death, the blessing and the curse. So choose life…
In Genesis 22:17, God tells Abraham (the father of faith – meaning the first who would hear His voice and believe and trust in Him):
“indeed I will greatly bless you, and I will greatly multiply your seed as the stars of the heavens and as the sand which is on the seashore; and your seed shall possess the gate of their enemies. 18″In your seed all the nations of the earth shall be blessed, because you have obeyed My voice.”
What’s important to recognize here, without me having pages and pages to type, is that as you look at Abraham’s life, the blessing upon his life had NOTHING to do with his performance or him being worthy to receive that blessing because of all his good works. On the contrary, the evidence of God’s blessing being fulfilled in our life comes BY FAITH (by believing God is faithful to do that which He promised to do, and really that through Christ, He already has – now our part is to simply agree with His word and receive it in our hearts to birth it forth from the supernatural into the natural).
Abraham got caught up in fear a few times and lied putting his wife and his own life at risk; He slept with his maidservant (upon His wife’s suggestion?) thinking that might be the pathway to God’s promised child in their life?? YET, time and again, God’s grace poured out on Abraham and the blessing (empowerment) continued to prevail in his life, because God’s goodness is the originator of the blessing, not man’s works. Abraham DID have a heart for God, he just messed up, like we all have sometimes, and God STILL showed up. He was trying his best, but he made some mistakes along the way.
2 Tim 2:13 says: If we are faithless, He remains faithful, for He cannot deny Himself.
There are three things I feel important for us to get in our hearts concerning the blessing of God:
First, WE MUST KNOW WE ARE VIRTUALLY INCAPABLE OF FULFILLING GOD’S DESIRES FOR OUR LIFE ON THIS EARTH WITHOUT THE POWER OF HIS BLESSING. We might as well quit trying to accomplish something on our own or to “make it happen” like Abraham did with Ishmael. Instead, when we trust in the word of the Lord, and God’s blessing upon us to produce the promise, then we will birth the Isaac God has destined for us and spare ourselves from the heartache and difficulties that giving birth to Ishmaels can produce for us. It’s exciting to trust God, and it requires faith and patience. The way we exercise faith and patience is by meditating on what God has spoken to us in the bible, and in our hearts, and allow those images and His faith to grow in us. I’ve heard it said that we don’t possess faith, faith possess us! Just like God told Abraham to look at the stars to help get a picture in his heart of the number of his descendants, He desires for us to meditate on His word and the things He has spoken into our lives – to dream and vision and see those things coming to pass. Then, to rest in what He has spoken and know that only God can and will make it happen. The HOW isn’t our part to figure out. Sometimes the waiting can be challenging when there are seasons or things happening that we can’t see happening as God is working on our behalf, but we can always know God is not a man that He should lie. The Holy Spirit will lead us and guide us and direct us along the best pathway (Psalm 32:8) and our job is to continually rest in Him and ask Him to lead us into all truth. He loves to reveal the truth to us. Sometimes we can get so excited when we get a word from God that our brains want to try and figure it all out, or do this or that, but we must go back to the word and give God praise and glory that His word is working on our behalf and thank Him for what HE is doing on our behalf. We must speak forth His word and know that as we do, the Holy Spirit is empowering the word alive in our hearts to change our circumstances as we trust in Him. Just like Abraham and Sarah couldn’t get pregnant on their own and were over a hundred years old, when they believed God’s word and gave up on their own efforts, they received the promised child Isaac.
Second, WE MUST KNOW AND UNDERSTAND OUR POSITION AS A BORN-AGAIN BELIEVER – THAT THROUGH CHRIST WE HAVE BEEN REDEEMED FROM THE CURSE AND WE ARE BLESSED!! That of course only means something if you understand what the blessing is – so mediate on what the “blessing” means as often as you need to until you really get it in your heart! I encourage you not to just read over it quickly in its entirety, but to take time on each word in the definition to really get it in your heart. The Greek word is back at the beginning of the post, and being blessed means you are empowered by God! You have his protection and favor upon you, God’s benefits and advantages are being extended to you, you have God’s abundant provision in your life. The blessing produces tangible, seen fruit. We see this in Abraham’s life where he had great wealth and provision, so much that all who were just simply associated with him also received benefit. Provision is not only financial provision though, it’s provision of health, of joy, of peace, etc. When we understand who we are in Christ and that we are a blessed people because of Him, God’s faith can freely overtake us and work through us as we proclaim healing for the sick and freedom for the captives, etc. If we are unsure of our position in Christ though, or aren’t fully persuaded that God has only good things in mind for His people, then it’s like having rocks in our heart that block His faith from working in and through our lives! KNOW THAT IN CHRIST, YOU ARE BLESSED!
Third, WE ARE BLESSED TO BE A BLESSING. God desires that we live blessed lives, but not only for our own sake; He also desires that we would empower those around us as well. God desires that we would bring His provision of life, of love, of joy, of peace, of health, of wealth, etc. to the people around us. He desires for us to expand His kingdom by sharing the good news of Christ, and not only with those who are already born-again Christians. Surely, we want to agree with God’s blessing for one another, and it seems we have an easy time doing that, but we are called to regain possession of the whole earth and every place the enemy has stolen. Rather than walking by a crack house or a bar or a prison and speaking all kinds of negative about the places or the people, I wonder what might happen if God’s people began to speak His blessing over those people and those places!? In Genesis 13, we see where Abraham trusted in God’s blessing on His life and told his nephew lot to choose whichever land he wanted and that Abraham would go in the opposite direction. Lot of course chose the most choice looking land already fertile, well-watered like “the garden of the Lord” the bible says. He was led by what his eyes could see, and unfortunately, we know that ultimately led to a path of destruction for him with the whole Sodom and Gomorrah scenario. But Abraham trusted in the Lord beyond what his eyes could see and knew that God’s blessing would turn a desolate land into a fertile land and that no matter where he went, God’s blessing would be upon him.
Lord, as Paul prayed, we pray Ephesians 1:18:
“I pray that the eyes of your heart may be enlightened, so that you will know what is the hope of His calling, what are the riches of the glory of His inheritance in the saints, 19 and what is the surpassing greatness of His power toward us who believe.”
Here are some personalized scripture confessions you can mediate and pray over your family and others as the Holy Spirit leads you! (As listed in Dr. Maureen’s Confessing God’s Word book)
Always keep in mind that as you pray and agree with God’s word over your life, the truth is first UNSEEN, so don’t be discouraged if as you first pray you think, “my life looks nothing like this.” That is the power of praying and agreeing with God’s word…we release His word to work in our lives and cause our lives to line up with what God says our life should look like.
God made me into a great nation in Christ. I am a blessing. (Gen 12:2)
I have received the names of God, and God has made my name great in Christ. (Eph 3:14-15, Gen 12:2)
I have received all the blessings of Abraham in Christ. I will surely become a great and powerful nation, and all nations on earth will be blessed through me. (Gen 18:18)
The Lord has blessed me abundantly, and I have become wealthy. (Gen 24:35)
Lord, I am not afraid, for you are my shield and my very great reward. (Gen 15:1)
I worship the Lord my God and His blessing is on my food and water. God has taken sickness away from me. (Ex 23:25)
You love me, Lord; You bless me and increase me. (Deut 7:13)
The blessings come upon me and overtake me. (Deut 28:2)
My descendants are blessed. (Deut 28:4)
I am blessed when I come in and when I go out. (Deut 28:6)
The Lord sends blessings on everything I put my hand to. the Lord blesses me in the land He has given me. (Deut 28:8)
I am blessed because I fear the Lord, and I find great delight in God’s commands. (Psalm 112:1)
I have received the blessing of the Lord that has brought me wealth, and He adds no trouble to it. (Prov 10:22)
Jesus, You redeemed me in order that the blessings given to Abraham might come to me through You, Christ Jesus, so that by faith I might receive the promise of the Spirit. (Gal 3:14)
God has blessed me in the heavenly realms with every spiritual blessing in Christ. (Eph 1:3)