WHAT DOES IT MEAN TO BE BLESSED?

We all want to know why we exist. We all want to know what special task God may have given us. So, we wonder. Why doesn’t God tell me what He wants me to do.

Does anyone know why God does not tell each of us what we are suppose to do? Christians know that God gave us the Bible, but not many people claim to be receiving individual direction from God.

Why doesn’t God tell each of us what to do? Well, he did talk to Adam and Eve directly, but, as Genesis 3 explains, Adam and Eve disobeyed Him. Since then God has not communicated directly with many of us. As Numbers 12:6-8 makes clear, when God communicated mouth to mouth with Moses, that was an exception, not the rule.

So, what can we do? If God won’t talk to us, how can we know what God wants? Well, God has given us His Bible, His revelation to us. That book contains instructions about how God wants us to live and what He wants us to do. When we have so much trouble obeying the Bible, do we really want to God to communicate mouth to mouth with us? 🤔 Look what that got Adam and Eve. Maybe, like the little children we are we ought to try walking before we try running. Reading the Bible may be difficult, but is communicating mouth to mouth with God easier?

Since many people do strive to be led by the Word of God, we can see how it works. When people try to live by the Bible, because what the Bible tells us to do is wise, those people have more satisfying lives, not perfect lives, but better.

In the ideal, what does being led by the Word of God look like? Jesus showed us. Consider one his prayers. Hours before He went die for us on the cross, Jesus prayed in the Garden of Gethsemane. This event in recorded in the books of Mathew (Matthew 26:36-46), Mark (Mark 14:32-42), and Luke. The version below is from the Book of Luke.

Luke 22:39-46 New American Standard Bible

The Garden of Gethsemane

39 And He came out and proceeded as was His custom to the Mount of Olives; and the disciples also followed Him. 40 When He arrived at the place, He said to them, “Pray that you may not enter into temptation.” 41 And He withdrew from them about a stone’s throw, and He knelt down and began to pray, 42 saying, “Father, if You are willing, remove this cup from Me; yet not My will, but Yours be done.” 43 [a]Now an angel from heaven appeared to Him, strengthening Him. 44 And being in agony He was praying very fervently; and His sweat became like drops of blood, falling down upon the ground. 45 When He rose from prayer, He came to the disciples and found them sleeping from sorrow, 46 and said to them, “Why are you sleeping? Get up and pray that you may not enter into temptation.”

Jesus was both man and God. The man was thoroughly terrified. Crucifixion would have been bad enough, but something even more awful happened on that cross, something even the Son of God dreaded. What? We don’t exactly know. We just know that for a moment Jesus felt abandoned, forsakened.

When He knew the cost would be so great, why did Jesus obey the Father? Jesus told us. He told us why the Father loves Him.

John 10:11-18 New American Standard Bible

11 “I am the good shepherd; the good shepherd lays down His life for the sheep. 12 He who is a hired hand, and not a shepherd, who is not the owner of the sheep, sees the wolf coming, and leaves the sheep and flees, and the wolf snatches them and scatters them. 13 He flees because he is a hired hand and is not concerned about the sheep. 14 I am the good shepherd, and I know My own and My own know Me, 15 even as the Father knows Me and I know the Father; and I lay down My life for the sheep. 16 I have other sheep, which are not of this fold; I must bring them also, and they will hear My voice; and they will become one flock with one shepherd. 17 For this reason the Father loves Me, because I lay down My life so that I may take it again. 18 No one has taken it away from Me, but I lay it down on My own initiative. I have authority to lay it down, and I have authority to take it up again. This commandment I received from My Father.”

What about us? Does Jesus expect us to be willing give our lives for Him, for God? Yes. The truth of this is recorded in the books of Mathew (Matthew 16:24-28), Mark, and Luke (Luke 9:23-26). The version below is from the Book of Mark.

Mark 8:34-38 New American Standard Bible

34 And He summoned the crowd with His disciples, and said to them, “If anyone wishes to come after Me, he must deny himself, and take up his cross and follow Me.35 For whoever wishes to save his [a]life will lose it, but whoever loses his [b]life for My sake and the gospel’s will save it.36 For what does it profit a man to gain the whole world, and forfeit his soul?37 For what will a man give in exchange for his soul?38 For whoever is ashamed of Me and My words in this adulterous and sinful generation, the Son of Man will also be ashamed of him when He comes in the glory of His Father with the holy angels.”

Are we willing to risk our souls? Not likely. Do we want our lives to have a sound foundation (see Matthew 7:24-27)? If the answer is “yes”, then we need to read the Bible, study it carefully, and do what God wants us to do. James made this fact quite clear.

James 1:21-25 New American Standard Bible

21 Therefore, putting aside all filthiness and all[a]that remains of wickedness, in [b]humility receive the word implanted, which is able to save your souls. 22 But prove yourselves doers of the word, and not merely hearers who delude themselves. 23 For if anyone is a hearer of the word and not a doer, he is like a man who looks at his [c]natural face in a mirror; 24 for once he has looked at himself and gone away, [d]he has immediately forgotten what kind of person he was. 25 But one who looks intently at the perfect law, the law of liberty, and abides by it, not having become a forgetful hearer but [e]an effectual doer, this man will be blessed in [f]what he does.

Blessed. What does it mean to be blessed? (gotquestions.org) answers this question.

Answer: Quite possibly, the most frequently used word in the Christian’s vocabulary is blessed. “Have a blessed day,” “blessed to be a blessing,” and “God bless you” are just a few of the ways we put it to use. It’s even common among unbelievers to describe themselves as “blessed.” Some people think of blessed as a spiritual term for “good fortune,” like when we receive something good, the desired outcome, or an exceptional comfort. But what does it really mean to be blessed?

The word blessed derives from the Greek term makarios, which means “fortunate,” “happy,” “enlarged,” or “lengthy.” Makarios is used in the Septuagint (a translation of the Old Testament into the Greek language) and the New Testament to define the kind of happiness that comes from receiving favor from God. Consequently, blessed can also be translated “favored.” In the New Testament, it usually carries the meaning of being “blessed by God.” As in the case of Mary, the mother of Jesus, who was “blessed among women” (Luke 1:42–4548), it was the Lord God who had blessed and favored her.

While material blessings are certainly included in God’s favor, the Bible ascribes a much fuller meaning to the word blessed. (continued here (gotquestions.org))

Jesus died crucified. James was a martyr, one of many. If we obey the Bible, we will be blessed, but the blessings we receive will come at a cost. What cost? Think about it then weigh that cost against the benefits of being blessed by God. Consider who you are. Then contemplate God.

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1 Response to WHAT DOES IT MEAN TO BE BLESSED?

  1. Rudy U Martinka says:

    Tom,

    We seem to be on the same wave length today in regard to the Bible meanings of being blessed.

    My Post today gives another perspective in regards to the Cook County Health Budget to the reason using this verse.

    “What good is it for someone to gain the whole world, yet forfeit their soul?” (Mark 8:36)

    Regards and goodwill blogging.

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