• William T. Howe Ph.D.

October 3, 2021

Daily Reading: Matthew 5-6

Matthew 5:3

Blessed are the poor in spirit: for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.

What does it mean to be Blessed? This is an often-used word, but one that many do not truly understand. Jesus was the first one to utter the word in the New Testament. In the Old Testament the Lord God Almighty blessed Adam and Eve (Genesis 1:22 the first mention of someone being blessed), so too the Lord Jesus Christ was the first to extend blessedness in the New Testament. This gives an insight to the word Blessed. First and foremost, it is something that is given from one to another. But what is a blessing?

In short it is favor. God’s favor was given to Adam and Eve, Jesus’ favor is given to those who fill the requirements as outlined in the section of the Bible commonly called “the beatitudes”. Another insight to the word is found in Hebrews 7:7 And without all contradiction the less is blessed of the better. There, Melchisedec receives tithes from Abraham and then blessed the patriarch. Melchisedec was “better” than Abraham for the reasons listed in Hebrews 7. The less, Abraham, was blessed of the better, Melchisedec.

Consider a wealthy individual that gives financial help to someone who is not wealthy. Concerning wealth, the rich person is better than the one who is not rich. Not perhaps in character, personality, or even morality, but in this one area of wealth, they are better in how much money they have accrued. It may be that the wealthy person may say to one who is not; “If you need money for this or that, just ask.” Asking is the condition that needs to be met in order to receive the blessing of money for the need. If the wealthy person does not give this permission to ask if they are in need, they are not wrong, it is their money, they can do with it as they want. That is of their choosing not to be a blessing.

Jesus Christ is better than any and all; He offers many ways for individuals to be blessed. He has it within His ability to bless or to withhold blessing. From Matthew 5:3 to 5:11 the Lord gives His word that if any person satisfies certain conditions in nine areas, they will be blessed. Each of these nine actions, or reactions, are contrary to human nature. Blessed are they that mourn: for they shall be comforted. To be comforted one must first mourn. Think about it like this. How can one be comforted if they are not mourning? If one is happy, everything is good in their life, they suffer no loss or broken heart, they need no comforting.

Blessings from God are available to all who appropriate them properly. Meaning they satisfy the conditions of God’ Word and will be blessed of the Lord. The better (God), blessing the less (humans). Amazing!

Until tomorrow, live for Christ today.

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