4.6.3 God's blessing in the new covenant

Starting in the new covenant, divine blessing was imparted through Jesus Christ. The Lord blessed through His word, through His miracles, and through His conduct. He placed His hands of blessing upon children. He forgave sinners. His ultimate blessing was given when He offered up His sinless life on the cross as an expiatory sacrifice for the reconciliation of all mankind. He thereby took upon Himself the curse which had burdened sinners.

The blessing which is made accessible through Jesus Christ can be understood in a comprehensive way. Thus we read in Ephesians 1: 3: "Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places in Christ." This blessing began with the election before the foundation of the world (verse 4). It also incorporates redemption and forgiveness of sins (verse 7), leads to the knowledge of God's will (verse 9), and includes the predestination as an heir of future glory (verse 11). It also grants access to the gospel (verse 13), and enables human beings to be sealed with the gift of the Holy Spirit, the pledge of the inheritance until redemption (verses 13-14).

Believers know that being chosen in Jesus Christ incorporates the calling to inherit the blessing (1 Peter 3: 9). They demonstrate their thankfulness for God's blessing through a life defined by the fear of God, obedience of faith, and selflessness.

Another thing associated with blessing is offering (see 13.2.4). This is a fundamental experience of Christian life.

Many divine blessings are made available to the believers in the divine service (see 12.1 and 12.2).

The fullness of blessing consists of sharing in God's glory forever.

SUMMARY

Blessing is an act of God's loving care, which no one can earn. Blessing is synonymous with God's salvation-bringing activity upon mankind and upon the creation. (4.6)

God often imparts His blessing through human beings commissioned by Him for this purpose. No one is able to bless himself. Blessing develops when faith is present. (4.6)

During the creation God blessed the creatures He had made, and laid the law of multiplication into His creation. He entrusted the creation to the care of man and promised to bless him. Although the blessing of God was somewhat subdued in its effect due to the curse of sin, it was not completely undone. (4.6.1)

In the old covenant, the blessing of God was primarily shown in earthly wellbeing, but nevertheless also had a dimension which transcended this. (4.6.2)

Jesus Christ imparted blessing through word and deed. The surrender of His sinless life as an expiatory sacrifice for the reconciliation of all human beings is the greatest blessing of all. (4.6.3)

Divine blessings are made accessible to believers in the divine service. (4.6.3)

The fullness of blessing consists of partaking in God's glory forever. (4.6.3)

See also