Blessed to Be a Blessing
“The Lord bless you and keep you.” —Numbers 6:24
They’re words you hear pretty often, typically when someone sneezes—“God bless you!”—or is running for political office—“And may God bless the United States of America!”
What is a blessing? What does it mean to bless? To be blessed?
“Bless” is a spiritual term. Jesus pronounced blessings: “And he took the children in his arms, placed his hands on them and blessed them” (Mark 10:16).
“When he had led them out to the vicinity of Bethany, he lifted up his hands and blessed them” (Luke 24:50).
Jesus began His Sermon on the Mount with a series of blessings: “Blessed are the poor in spirit…Blessed are those who mourn…Blessed are the meek…Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness…Blessed are the merciful…Blessed are the pure in heart…Blessed are the peacemakers…Blessed are those who are persecuted because of righteousness…Blessed are you when people insult you, persecute you and falsely say all kinds of evil against you because of me…”
In our verse this week, God directed the priests to daily pronounce a blessing on His people as they wandered in the wilderness.
In context, we read: “The Lord said to Moses, ‘Tell Aaron and his sons, “This is how you are to bless the Israelites. Say to them: ‘The Lord bless you and keep you; the Lord make his face shine on you and be gracious to you; the Lord turn his face toward you and give you peace’”’” (Numbers 6:22-26).
In giving the priests this instruction, God demonstrated that His name, power, and authority, could be spoken over, or placed on His people.
He wanted this engrained into their thinking—He is their God of blessing; they should turn to Him every step of their journey, every hour of the day. What an incredible gift we can offer others: “The Lord bless you and keep you!”
Blessings are found throughout Scripture. Grab a concordance. See what you find. Look for ways you might pronounce God’s blessing on others. A spouse, a child, grandchild? A co-worker, friend, acquaintance?
Who might you bless in the course of your day today?
Be blessed and be a blessing. Pass it on.
My prayer for this week:
Lord, you are the giver of every good and perfect gift. Your blessings are too numerous to count, too wonderful to fully comprehend. Please give me eyes to see and ears to hear—a heart that reflects yours—that I might share your blessings with others.