22. The Blessings Of God


Ten lepers once cried out to Jesus, “Jesus, Master, have pity on us!” When he saw them, he said, “Go, show yourselves to the priests.” And as they went, they were cleansed. One of them, when he saw he was healed, came back, praising God in a loud voice. He threw himself at Jesus’ feet and thanked him—and he was a Samaritan. Jesus asked, “Were not all ten cleansed? Where are the other nine? Has no one returned to give praise to God except this foreigner?” Luke 17:13-17.

Most of us are as ungrateful as the nine. When we are blessed, we do not realise the measure of our blessings. If we do, too often we fail to thank God for his mercies. This lesson is designed to give us a greater appreciation of the divine blessings, both material and spiritual.


All men, whether Christians or not, have received bountiful material blessings from God. Jesus teaches that God “causes his sun to rise on the evil and the good, and sends rain on the righteous and the unrighteous.” Matthew 5:45.

Food, clothing, shelter and many, many more things which we take for granted have come from God, for “Every good and perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of the heavenly lights, who does not change like shifting shadows.” James 1:17.

Yet, in a special way, God provides for the material necessities of Christians so that they have a promise of divine care which does not belong to the sinner.

Jesus teaches, “But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well.” Matthew 6:33. Here he has specific reference to God’s provision for the material needs of those who would put him before the things of the world.


The greatest divine blessings are not material, but spiritual. Paul declares, “Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us in the heavenly realms with every spiritual blessing in Christ.” Ephesians 1:3.

Since these blessings are to be found in Christ, they are the heritage of the Christian, and are not promised to the one out of Christ.

We gain entrance to Christ where these blessings are to be found by being baptised into him. “So in Christ Jesus you are all children of God through faith, for all of you who were baptized into Christ have clothed yourselves with Christ.” Galatians 3:26-27.

We will now examine some of the specific spiritual blessings which belong to the child of God.


“For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.” Romans 6:23.

Spiritual death, the separation of man from God which has resulted from sin, can be overcome only by forgiveness. God forgives us by virtue of the atoning blood of Christ made possible by divine grace.

“In him (Christ) we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of sins, in accordance with the riches of God’s grace” Ephesians 1:7.

The Christian knows that having been baptised into Christ his sins committed prior to his acceptance of the Lord have been taken away. And he is assured that when through weakness he slips after becoming a Christian he may through prayer petition the heavenly Father to forgive. No past sin need weigh upon his conscience because he is certain that in Christ he has forgiveness.


One of the greatest, yet most overlooked of the blessings found in Christ is that of the indwelling Spirit. Many scriptures teach that the Holy Spirit dwells within the Christian.

“Do you not know that your bodies are temples of the Holy Spirit, who is in you, whom you have received from God?” 1 Corinthians 6:19.

“Don’t you know that you yourselves are God’s temple and that God’s Spirit dwells in your midst?” 1 Corinthians 3:16.

“And if the Spirit of him who raised Jesus from the dead is living in you, he who raised Christ from the dead will also give life to your mortal bodies because of his Spirit who lives in you.” Romans 8:11.

As is true of other spiritual blessings, the indwelling of the Spirit is received at the time that one is baptised into Christ.

Peter teaches, “Repent and be baptized, every one of you, in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins. And you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit. The promise is for you and your children and for all who are far off—for all whom the Lord our God will call.” Acts 2:38-39.

Just as truly as the remission of sins results when one obeys the gospel, this scripture teaches that at the same time one also receives the gift of the Holy Spirit. Of course, nothing in these verses implies that one can perform miracles simply because the Spirit of God dwells within him.


It is through the indwelling Spirit that God often works to bestow his blessings. For example, we are informed “that out of his glorious riches he may strengthen you with power through his Spirit in your inner being” Ephesians 3:16.

But Paul also informs us, “I can do all this through him who gives me strength.” Philippians 4:13. The strength which Paul had to meet his problems was through Christ, yet apparently, it was received by means of the indwelling of the Holy Spirit.

If we truly dwell in Christ, we will find it possible to surmount our obstacles. When we have temptation, we are promised that we will be able to successfully face it.

“No temptation has overtaken you except what is common to mankind. And God is faithful; he will not let you be tempted beyond what you can bear. But when you are tempted, he will also provide a way out so that you can endure it.” 1 Corinthians 10:13.


It has already been suggested that God cares for the material needs of his children in a special way. This divine providence extends to every aspect of the welfare of Christians.

Paul teaches, “And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.” Romans 8:28. The recipients of this promise are those who have been called out of sin or Christians.

Note that this passage teaches that all things work together for the child of God. This does not, however, imply that we will always receive everything that we may desire.

Sometimes we pray for those things which are not best for us. But the scripture does indicate that God will always do what is best for our welfare.

Even when our lives are filled with grief, sorrow and suffering, we may know that if we truly love God all of those things are working together for our ultimate good, and that sometimes, if not now, we will understand the actions of our Father.

Truly, we are assured that “Never will I leave you never will I forsake you.” So we say with confidence, “The Lord is my helper I will not be afraid. What can mere mortals do to me?” Hebrews 13:5-6.


At first, we might not count the Lord’s chastisement as a blessing. But the inspired writer informs us, “the Lord disciplines the one he loves, and he chastens everyone he accepts as his son.”

Endure hardship as discipline God is treating you as his children. For what children are not disciplined by their father?” Hebrews 12:6-7.

“Moreover, we have all had human fathers who disciplined us and we respected them for it. How much more should we submit to the Father of spirits and live! They disciplined us for a little while as they thought best but God disciplines us for our good, in order that we may share in his holiness. No discipline seems pleasant at the time, but painful. Later on, however, it produces a harvest of righteousness and peace for those who have been trained by it.” Hebrews 12:9-11.

Suffering often develops the best that is in us, and divine correction through chastisement should enable us to overcome our weaknesses. Just as a human father will punish his child because he loves him, so God must sometimes chastise us for our own good.


A great source of consolation for the Christian is found in communion with God. James teaches, “Come near to God and he will come near to you.” James 4:8.

When we are burdened, we may find comfort in our Father. But we must go to him if we expect him to commune with us.

Communion is actually “joint participation” and implies action upon the part of both parties. This we have when we worship God. The various elements of worship each constitute communion with God.

The Lord’s supper is specifically referred to as a communion or participation.

“Is not the cup of thanksgiving for which we give thanks a participation in the blood of Christ? And is not the bread that we break a participation in the body of Christ?” 1 Corinthians 10:16.

In partaking of these emblems in memory of our Saviour, we commune with God.

This is also true when we pray. Actually, in prayer we are talking with God, pouring out our hearts to him with the assurance that he hears us. We are taught that “The prayer of a righteous person is powerful and effective.” James 5:16.

On the other hand, when we read the scriptures God is talking to us, and as we open our minds to learn his will we are communing with him. Even when we sing praise to God, we commune with him as he received the adoration which we offer to his name.


The consummating blessing of the Christian is that of an eternal home. The scriptures abound in promises of a home for the soul in life after death.

Before he departed from this earth, Jesus promised, “My Father’s house has many rooms; if that were not so, would I have told you that I am going there to prepare a place for you? And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come back and take you to be with me that you also may be where I am.” John 14:2-3.

Paul declared, “For we know that if the earthly tent we live in is destroyed, we have a building from God, an eternal house in heaven, not built by human hands.” 2 Corinthians 5:1.

The hope of eternal life is one of the great impelling forces which drives the child of God forward through the turmoil’s of life. Of this, we read, “We have this hope as an anchor for the soul, firm and secure.” Hebrews 6:19.

Because the Christian has been a partaker of God’s spiritual blessings in this life, he can be confident that a dwelling place with God awaits him in the next.


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