Blessed of the Lord
James Smith, 1861
God sometimes blesses his people so visibly, following their efforts and crowning their labors, that their very enemies see it. This was the case with Isaac when he dwelt at Gerar, so that Abimelech acknowledged it, and said unto him, "You are now the blessed of the Lord!" Genesis 26:29. The same may be said of all the Lord's people. Let us look at,
The Favor."Blessed of the Lord." They are . . .
What a favor — what a privilege is this! They are blessed
. . .
with the pardon of all sin,
with access to God with confidence,
with true and solid joy,
with the prospect of a glorious, immutable, and eternal inheritance!
O blessed state! Happy are the people that are in such a case! Yes, blessed are the people who have the Lord for their God.
The Proof."You are now the blessed of the Lord." You have a spirit of prayer, drawing near unto God. You have faith in Jesus, as the Lamb that was slain. Christ is precious to you, as your life, your all. The love of God is shed abroad in your heart, leading you to love God in response. You have come out of the world, are distinct from the world, and live above the world. You are united to God's people, esteeming them as the excellent of the earth. You live upon God's providence, which ever proves itself your friend. Or, if you cannot see these things in yourself, you have a restless desire for God's blessing, an ardent longing to see the good of his chosen people, and an inward crying of soul to spend an eternity with his blessed ones! God's blessing is everlasting life, and all who possess it will reign in life through our Lord Jesus Christ.
Those who enjoy God's blessing prove it in their life, conduct and conversation. Those who do prove it, will often be tempted and tried on the point, and doubts and fears will harass and distress them. It is very probable, if the Lord blesses them — that men will curse them; and if the Lord favors them — that men will persecute them.
This is the great point to be inquired into, and ascertained: Am I the blessed one of the Lord? If so, all spiritual blessings are mine. If so, Jesus, as the king, will say unto me, "Come, you who are blessed of my Father — inherit the kingdom prepared for you, from the foundation of the world!"
If I am blessed of God — then man's curse cannot hurt me; all that happens will be overruled for my good, and at last, I shall enter into the joy of the Lord, to be happy and holy forever.
If we are not the blessed of the Lord — then we are under his curse. We have broken his law, and have not believed his gospel. We have grieved his heart, and have not applied to him for a pardon. To be accursed of God is dreadful. It was the bitterest ingredient in the Savior's cup of sorrow. It is the most terrible thing in Hell. Yet multitudes, multitudes, live unconcerned, while under God's curse. They may be delivered from it — but they will not seek deliverance. They may come under his blessing — but they will not come to Jesus that they may do so. O strange infatuation! O perilous condition! O terrible prospect!
Reader, what are you? Are you now the blessed of the Lord? Or, are you accursed of God? One or the other you must be — get the matter decided if it is not. Live not in a state of uncertainty, much less in a state of unconcern. To be blessed of God is to have eternal life, plenty, and glory — but to be accursed of God is eternal death, destitution, and everlasting punishment.
Gracious Lord, give us your blessing! Bless us . . .
with a correct knowledge of ourselves,
with living faith in Christ,
with a sweet sense of the pardon of sin,
with the witness of the Holy Spirit to our adoption,
and with pleasant foretastes of everlasting glory!
For Jesus' sake. Amen.