Blessings and Blessed

Christians every day and every night all over the world pray for God’s blessings.  We pray to be blessed, live blessed lives, and we pray for God to bless our endeavors. In our minds we have thoughts of great things falling from heaven into our laps.  Or we have this idea of things and processes magically working in our favor.  We have visions of strangers giving us things or making life easier on our behalf for no apparent reason.  You ask any Christian about being blessed or blessings and what it means to them and you shall hear such glorious things.  Our glory will always win out when we think of God’s favor on us.  In our eyes the end result for whatever God does will be our exultation.

First let’s define Blessed and Blessings.

Blessed

1. consecratedsacred; holy; sanctified: the Blessed Sacrament.
2. worthy of adoration, reverence, or worship: the BlessedTrinity.
3. divinely or supremely favored; fortunate: to be blessed with astrong, healthy body; blessed with an ability to find friends.
4. blissfully happy or contented.

Blessing

1. the act or words of a person who blesses.
2. a special favor, mercy, or benefit: the blessings of liberty.
3. a favor or gift bestowed by God, thereby bringing happiness.
4. the invoking of God’s favor upon a person: The son was denied his father’s blessing.
5. praise; devotion; worship, especially grace said before a meal: The children took turns reciting the blessing.

Biblically those things that are blessed are sanctified by God.  They become set apart or set aside.  When blessing is used as a noun its meaning is sanctification.  Blessings can be gifts as well or favor.  In God’s dealings with Israel in the old testament,  a majority of the blessings promised to them centered on earthly things.  But even so, it all depended on their state of being obedient to God’s commandments.  When we speak of someone being blessed, it is the favor of God or his grace being on that person’s life.  But a person has to be found worthy by God for him to call them blessed.  It is a condition of the heart that God is looking for as our Lord Jesus Christ preaches at the Mount of Olives.


Matthew 5:2-12

And (A)he opened his mouth and taught them, saying: (B)“Blessed are (C)the poor in spirit, for (D)theirs is the kingdom of heaven.  “Blessed are (E)those who mourn, for they shall be comforted. “Blessed are the (F)meek, for they (G)shall inherit the earth. “Blessed are those who hunger and (H)thirst (I)for righteousness, for they shall be satisfied. “Blessed are (J)the merciful, for they shall receive mercy. “Blessed are (K)the pure in heart, for (L)they shall see God. “Blessed are (M)the peacemakers, for (N)they shall be called (O)sons[a] of God. 10 (P)“Blessed are those who are persecuted for righteousness’ sake, for (Q)theirs is the kingdom of heaven. 11 (R)“Blessed are you when others revile you and persecute you and utter all kinds of evil against you falsely (S)on my account. 12 (T)Rejoice and be glad, for your reward is great in heaven, for (U)so they persecuted the prophets who were before you.

Matthew Henry Commentary

Who are blessed.

Our Saviour here gives eight characters of blessed people, which represent to us the principal graces of a Christian.

1. The poor in spirit are happy. These bring their minds to their condition, when it is a low condition. They are humble and lowly in their own eyes. They see their want, bewail their guilt, and thirst after a Redeemer. The kingdom of grace is of such; the kingdom of glory is for them.

2. Those that mourn are happy. That godly sorrow which worketh true repentance, watchfulness, a humble mind, and continual dependence for acceptance on the mercy of God in Christ Jesus, with constant seeking the Holy Spirit, to cleanse away the remaining evil, seems here to be intended. Heaven is the joy of our Lord; a mountain of joy, to which our way is through a vale of tears. Such mourners shall be comforted by their God.

3. The meek are happy. The meek are those who quietly submit to God; who can bear insult; are silent, or return a soft answer; who, in their patience, keep possession of their own souls, when they can scarcely keep possession of anything else. These meek ones are happy, even in this world. Meekness promotes wealth, comfort, and safety, even in this world.

4. Those who hunger and thirst after righteousness are happy. Righteousness is here put for all spiritual blessings. These are purchased for us by the righteousness of Christ, confirmed by the faithfulness of God. Our desires of spiritual blessings must be earnest. Though all desires for grace are not grace, yet such a desire as this, is a desire of God’s own raising, and he will not forsake the work of his own hands.

5. The merciful are happy. We must not only bear our own afflictions patiently, but we must do all we can to help those who are in misery. We must have compassion on the souls of others, and help them; pity those who are in sin, and seek to snatch them as brands out of the burning.

6. The pure in heart are happy; for they shall see God. Here holiness and happiness are fully described and put together. The heart must be purified by faith, and kept for God. Create in me such a clean heart, O God. None but the pure are capable of seeing God, nor would heaven be happiness to the impure. As God cannot endure to look upon their iniquity, so they cannot look upon his purity.

7. The peace-makers are happy. They love, and desire, and delight in peace; and study to be quiet. They keep the peace that it be not broken, and recover it when it is broken. If the peace-makers are blessed, woe to the peace-breakers!

8. Those who are persecuted for righteousness’ sake are happy. This saying is peculiar to Christianity; and it is more largely insisted upon than any of the rest. Yet there is nothing in our sufferings that can merit of God; but God will provide that those who lose for him, though life itself, shall not lose by him in the end. Blessed Jesus! how different are thy maxims from those of men of this world! They call the proud happy, and admire the gay, the rich, the powerful, and the victorious. May we find mercy from the Lord; may we be owned as his children, and inherit his kingdom. With these enjoyments and hopes, we may cheerfully welcome low or painful circumstances. (Mt 5:13-16)

God’s will for us it to sanctify us, we are to work out our salvation to show ourselves approved.  We live before others in a way that shows that we are God’s thus approved and blessed.  Our fruitfulness shows that and brings him glory.  When we bear fruit, showing our blessedness we are given blessings to further glorify God by any means possible.  We tend to limit how we can worship and glorify God to the areas we desire increase for our own selfish means.  All of our lives and everything that we do can be used by the Holy Spirit to worship and Glorify God in spirit and in truth.  To be blessed we must live a life centered on Christ and we must have a mind set on the riches of the spirit not of this world.  So when we pray for blessings, we are praying to be blessed to be centered on Christ and to be completely satisfied in Him alone.  When we satisfied with Christ, his grace is sufficient.  Godliness with contentment is great gain (1 Tim 6:6) and this will bring about blessings.  But if your end goal is earthly blessings then the treasure of your heart is not Christ but mammon.

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