Summary: This is a New Years sermon, reminding People that not only does God want to bless his people, He wants us to be channels of His blessing to others
TITLE: Living In The Blessing
Text: Number 6:24-27
Theme: New Years, blessing
I do not think that there is anyone who does not like receiving a Blessing from the Lord.
Over and over we read how that God has blessed us, and longs to bless us with even more blessing. In fact did you know that the word “bless, blessing, and blessed are used over 500 times in both the Old and New Testaments?
What did it mean to say, “The Lord bless you”?
In its simplest form, to bless or blessing means ‘to Kneel (BArak Heb.)
The Hebrew word literally means “on bended knee”. It describes a servant kneeling out of respect for his master or a lover kneeling to ask his beloved for her hand in marriage.
It signifies to celebrate with praises. This is what we do when we praise God in worship. We are ascribing blessing to the Lord, acknowledging His goodness, with a desire that He be glorified in and through our lives.
Blessing is used in four different manners in the Bible.
a. Starting in Genesis, God blesses His creation, mankind, the Sabbath, nations and men.
b. Psalm 103:3 encourages worshippers to bless God through praise, adoration and worship.
1(A)Bless the LORD, O my soul,
And all that is within me, bless His (B)holy name.
2Bless the LORD, O my soul,
And (C)forget none of His benefits;
3Who (D)pardons all your iniquities,
Who (E)heals all your diseases;
c. Godly men by words and actions can bestow blessing on each other.
8To sum up, (A)all of you be harmonious, sympathetic, (B)brotherly, (C)kindhearted, and (D)humble in spirit;
9(E)not returning evil for evil or (F)insult for insult, but giving a (G)blessing instead; for (H)you were called for the very purpose that you might (I)inherit a blessing.
d. In Bible times, godly men under inspiration spoke prophetic blessing on their children. For example, Noah blessed Japheth and Shem; Isaac blessed Jacob and Esau; Jacob later spoke blessing upon the entire twelve tribes of Isreal.
I think it is obvious that God wants to bless His kids.
In fact, Ephesians 1:3-14 says that God has “…blessed us in Christ with every spiritual blessing…”
Could this really be true? Many wonder where is this blessing? How can God be blessing me? . Look at the world… not much blessing, …
As we all look towards a new year, we naturally wander what it will bring. Many of us would like to write 2005 off. After all between hurricanes, Tsunamis, political corruption, we understandably want to lift our hands in the air and say, “ENOUGH ALL READY”
But from the very beginning God’s intention was to bless humanity.
Genesis 1:26 “Then God said: ‘Let us make man in our image, in our likeness….’ (27) So God created man in his own image, in the image of God he created them, male and female he created them. (28) God BLESSED them and said to them, Be fruitful and increase in number; fill the earth and subdue it…’ (31) God saw all that he had made, and it was very good.” (NIV)
What was God’s original intention? To bless humanity, it is not? We are the only thing created that is blessed with His image. That gives purpose dignity. We are made to be blessed, not cursed, spat on, ridiculed, or to exist with fear.
God’s heart - filled with joy when He created humanity as He blessed them….Strong’s concordance
So what of 2006? I belive that as we look forward in faith we can expect God’s blessing upon us. Got your Bibles ready? Turn to Numbers 6:23-27 (read)
The Aaronic Blessing: What is this blessing anyhow? What does it mean to me and my family? How can I live in this blessing?
This particular blessing is called the Aaronic Blessing or the Priestly Blessing. The blessing was one way of asking for God’s Divine favor to rest upon others. This ancient blessing in these verses helps us understand what a blessing was supposed to do.
We learn from Leviticus that the priests were to say these words with their hands held up above their heads. This was to signify that the words weren’t just being uttered by the priests, but were coming from God Himself to the people. The priest was the mediator, not the initiator. When the people gathered for worship, the priest would offer the sacrifices to establish them in fellowship with God, then he would raise his arms and pronounce the blessing.
It’s five parts conveyed hope that God would (1) Bless and keep them – favor and protect; (2) Make His face shine upon them- Be Pleased; (3) Be gracious- merciful and compassionate; (4) turn his face toward THEM- GIVE hiS APPORVAL; (5) Give peace.