The Comprehensive Promise
"In blessing, I will bless you!" Genesis 22:17
So spoke Jehovah to Abraham, as if He had said, "I will bless you with the greatest blessings — to the utmost extent of blessing." Or, "I will bless you like a God who is infinite, eternal, and immutably the same." This promise includes every blessing, for time and eternity — all that God can give, or man receive.
But was it intended only for Abraham? Oh, no! It is a family portion! It was made to Abraham — as the father of all those who shall believe; and God left it in all its fullness, richness, and perfection, to every child in his vast family! Therefore, the Apostle says, "So then, those who are of faith," (or all believers,) "are blessed with faithful Abraham." And again, "Christ has redeemed us, that the blessing of Abraham might come on the Gentiles, through Jesus Christ." (Galatians 3:9-14.) So that all who believe as Abraham did — are blessed as Abraham was.
Abraham believed on the simple ground of testimony, because God spoke; and he manifested the truth and power of his faith, by seeking to please God supremely; therefore he left his own kindred, birth-place, and relatives, because God bade him: he surrendered all to God, and held all that he had, as the property of God. His one business was to obey and please God; and this is always the case, where there is real faith, the faith of God's elect, the faith of the operation of God.
Now all who have this faith, are heirs of this promise. To every one of them, God is still saying, "In blessing, I will bless you." Such are blessed in Christ, the source and center of blessedness; as it is written, "Men shall be blessed in Him." They are blessed just as Abraham was: in their persons, with a justification from all sin, by faith in Jesus. They are blessed with friendship with God, who invites, accepts, and treats them as His friends. They are blessed with fellowship with God, Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, in which stands the very essence of real religion. They are blessed with protection, for God is their SHIELD, and their exceeding great reward. They are blessed in their provision — the Lord blesses their bread and their water, and blesses them with a contented mind, which is a continual feast.
I addition to which, they have Christ with all His fullness for their portion — both in this world and in that which is to come. They are blessed in their families; not with an exemption from trials — but every trial is sanctified; and their families are under a blessing. They are blessed in their efforts to do good, the Lord approves of their attempts, accepts their feeble endeavors, and very generally crowns them with success. They are blessed in their very trials — there is no curse in them, and they are made most useful to them. Their losses, crosses, bereavements and perplexities — are all arranged for their welfare, and work together for their good — so that they would not be so blessed — if they were not so tried! What would injure others, benefits them. The very curse of men is turned into a blessing. They are blessed all through time, in the article of death, and will be blessed to all eternity. Surely we may say of our God, "Whom you bless — is blessed indeed!"
How important to be heir to such a promise! Reader, are you? Can you claim it? Do you believe it? Are you realizing its fulfillment, and expecting it to be made good to you, day by day?
What strong consolation it holds out. Let men curse me, revile me, and cast out my name as evil — my God says, "In blessing, I will bless you. I shall never think I can do too much for you — or be too kind to you. I will keep you as the apple of my eye, and I will bide you under the shadow of my wing."
What a great obligation such a promise lays us under. How should we love our God, who thus promises! With what warmth and constancy should our affections ascend unto Him! How should we obey Him, with what care, with what concern to please Him, and disregard of the opinion of others? How should we endeavor instrumentally to bless others?
Abraham was not only to be blessed — but to be a blessing. Very much of real blessedness, consists in our being a blessing to others.
How should we seek to realize, enjoy, and live up to our privilege; for it is only so, that we can honor our God, or render to Him again according to that which He has done for us!