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God’s Blessings Predictable?

May 7th, 2006

“…he will be blessed in his doing”

(James 1:25)

In our experience, most people want to believe that God cares for them and will bless them. This notion is based upon a concept of the God of the Bible—for the God of the Bible is known as a blessing God (see Psalm 129:8). There is a sense in which God blesses all men, as it is written—“…For he makes his sun rise on the evil and on the good, and sends rain on the just and the unjust” (Matthew 5:45). However, there is another sense in which only particular people are blessed. This is a hard saying for idle, busybodies. For example, the biblical work-ethic, as commanded by the apostle Paul, reads—“If anyone is not willing to work, let him not eat. For we hear that some among you walk in idleness, not busy at work, but busybodies. Now such persons we command and encourage in the Lord Jesus Christ to do their work quietly and to earn their own living” (2 Thess. 3:10-12).

In the Epistle of James, James clarifies that one’s behavior determines whether he/she will be blessed or not blessed (James 1:25). Furthermore, one’s Christian view–that is, what source of wisdom (sophia, 3:13-18) one is operating with, will determine whether they get this message or scorn it (4:1-2,6). God’s blessings are predictable, according to data from James:

1. Blessings are conditional (James 1:25).
2. Blessings come to the steadfast (James 1:3,12).
3. Blessings are not conditioned upon belief alone (James 2:14-26; especially note 2:14).

Yes, God does long to bless you—not only with his sun and rain, but also, with his Son and Reign (Colossians 1:13)!

-Robert M. Housby

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