Blessed man, blessed woman, who fear God, Who cherish and relish his commandments,Psalm 112:1 The Message
I guess from July 4th most of us will in some way feel blessed as the lifting of some lockdown restrictions comes into effect.
The negative side is how we respond to those changes and two bad examples are the crowds on Bournemouth beach, not to mention in my own local park. People seem to disregard the safety of others.
We all want to blessed in every area of our lives. Physical health is a real blessing and takes a moment to thank God right now that you are in good health. Our finances can be a blessing and I am sure you can add to those already mentioned.
Our opening statement concerns blessing in respect to our relationship with God. The word fear hardly conjures blessing but that word fear needs to be explained.
“The fear of the Lord” is not meant as a servile fear, a fear of punishment, but rather a Godly fear, as we gain knowledge of God as a father, of his love and grace in Christ, particularly of his forgiving love.
Job, a man who we know suffered much and you might say was hardly blessed (read the end of his story), had this to say:
The fear-of-the-Lord—that’s Wisdom, and Insight means shunning evil.Job 28:28 The Message
Two things that will help us are:
- Wisdom (sophia) = a person knows the first principles or basic principles of life.
- Understanding (sunesei) / Insight = a person has the ability to apply the basic principles of life.
It is no good having one without the other. We need to have both and implement both.
Job is clearly telling us the fear of the Lord is not a fear of punishment. The fear of the Lord is a refusal to participate in evil (Job 28:28).
To fear the LORD is to hate evil, Proverbs 8:13 The Fear-of-God means hating Evil, whose ways I hate with a passion. The fear of the Lord actually protects us from sinning against God, against others and against ourselves.
Commandments or laws are good. They are there to protect us and enable us to enjoy life. God’s commandments are a blessing and so will be the commandments of our government so why don’t we take a minute to commit to obeying these commandments and preventing a new surge of the virus and helping others to enjoy the blessings of these restrictions.
Let us not commit to the scenes we have seen last week and selfishly spoil it for everyone. As followers of Jesus, we should be more than happy to obey the commandments and receive the blessings.
Let us use our wisdom and insight to show those we meet that Blessed is the man, and blessed is the woman, who fear God, and who cherish and relish his commandments.
Stay safe and Blessed.