Part I review: this proverb addresses how we trust in God’s provision with the effort we should expend in earning our wages (see II Thessalonians 3:10; cf. Exodus 20:8-11; Deuteronomy 5:12-14). We can experience miracles re: material things in our lives when God is doing things past what we ought to... and we’ll never be sorry for that!
In this brief series, I’m going to posit three scriptural ideas that define the blessing of the LORD I hope will provoke you to deeper love for Him and even more good works!
Psalms qualifies that blessing is also enjoyed as God’s favor upon us.
- 11 But let all those rejoice who put their trust in You; let them ever shout for joy, because You defend them; Let those also who love Your name be joyful in You. 12 For You, O Lord, will bless the righteous; with favor You will surround him as with a shield (Psalm 5:11-12).
- 4 Sing praise to the Lord, you saints of His, and give thanks at the remembrance of His holy name. 5 For His anger is but for a moment, His favor is for life; weeping may endure for a night, but joy comes in the morning (Psalm 30:4-5).
- 11 For the Lord God is a sun and shield; the Lord will give favor and glory; no good thing will He withhold from those who walk uprightly.12 O Lord of hosts, blessed is the man who trusts in You! (Psalm 84:11-12.
A little word study.
- The Hebrew noun ratson (raw-tsone’) translated as favor means: pleasure, delight, goodwill, acceptance, and will and vital to note is that these are demonstrable by God!
- God seeks out people who love Him and His commands so that He can bless, guide, and shield them (Psalm 37:23; Proverbs 3:5–6; John 4:23-24; Hebrews 11:6).
- This doesn’t mean that the righteous whom God favors alwayslive on Easy Street. (II Corinthians 6:4; Acts 14:22; 20:23; I Peter 2:19).
- Heroes such as Noah, Abraham, Moses, Daniel, and Jesus’ mother Mary were favored of the Lord, but they also faced immense difficulties like we do.
Putting this into practice.
- You ask, “Great: now I know the definition of God’s favor, but how do I gain and maintain living in it?”
- Bear in mind we’re beyond the unmerited favor that saves us; grace is already a given, here, for those who trust, believe in, and follow Jesus.
- We’re talking about the sort of favor – and you have to understand this to get today’s message – that is God’s way of:
- Opening doors of opportunity that we didn’t earn by humankind’s standards (Psalm 27:1; Isaiah 41:10; Romans 8:31).
- And blessing us in ways that contradict what we naturally perceive of situations (Isaiah 43:16-19).
- But this is a most important thing about today’s message: favor has as part of its definition will, and understanding this about God’s favor revolutionizes the spiritual life (Psalm 1:1-3).
- A great aim early in our friendship with God is to learn His commands and obey them.
- The greater result over time, though, is that in our continual fulfillment of God‘s commands, His root deepens in us (Psalm 1:3).
- In other words: His ways become our ways as we move from simply doingHis will to being His will (I Corinthians 1:26-31; II Corinthians 2:15-17; Ephesians 2:10).
So this is a pastor’s prayer for you in realizing God’s favor – the blessing of the LORD– today:
2 Beloved, I pray that you may prosper in all things and be in health, just as your soul prospers. 3 For I rejoiced greatly when brethren came and testified of the truth that is in you, just as you walk in the truth. 4 I have no greater joy than to hear that my children walk in truth (III John 1:2).