Axiom #3: “Blessed to Be a Blessing”
In Genesis 12, God makes a covenant with Abraham. A covenant from which we can learn much about the way God thinks and what how He wants His people to behave.
He said, “And I will make you a great nation, and I will bless you, and make your name great; and so you shall be a blessing; 3 and I will bless those who bless you, and the one who curses you I will curse. And in you all the families of the earth will be blessed.” Genesis 12:2-3. Within this promise, God said that He was going to ‘bless’ Abraham’s seed.
What is a blessing? The word, ‘bless’ means to kneel. It describes the posture of the recipient receiving a blessing. Some form of the word occurs almost 600 times in the Bible.
A blessing means two things. First, it means favored status to the one receiving the blessing. Secondly, it means the bestowing of prosperity and success.
God definitively said that He was going to bless Abraham and the nation that was to come from him.
Why did God bless Abraham? The answer is found in verses 2 and 3. God said, “…and so you shall be a blessing”. He also said, “…and in you all the families of the earth shall be blessed.”
The reason why God blessed Abraham was so that he could be a blessing to others. God blesses His people so that they can be a blessing to others. For example, Mary, the mother of Jesus, found favor with God. She was blessed so that she could be a blessing to others by delivering a Savior to the world.
The main purpose of God’s blessing is to help those whom He blesses to bless others. The purpose of a blessing is NOT so we just benefit in some way. It is not so that we can just accrue more material possessions or so that we can just remain physically or emotionally healthy or so that we can just become respected or rich or relationally prosperous.
The purpose of receiving a blessing is so that we can be a blessing to others. As we accrue wealth, we can more richly give to others. As we remain physically healthy, we can do things for others. As we are blessed with emotional health, we can relationally bless others. As we become respected by others, we can influence others for good.
In whatever way we are blessed, we can then turn around and bless others from the midst of our blessing.
We have an incredible amount of wealth as Americans. Compared to most developing countries, we are extremely wealthy. Ever wonder why you were born in America and not India or Africa? As Christians living in America, God has blessed us enormously. We need to steward that blessing and be a blessing to those who do not have what we take for granted.
At the heart of missions is the understanding that we are blessed to be a blessing. There is so much we can do for the sake of the gospel if we take to heart what God taught Abraham almost four thousand years ago.
Something to think about…