Every one of us who believes in God desires to receive God’s blessings, because God blessing a person represents that this person is approved by God and pleases God. Then, how can we receive God’s blessings? This is what we are all concerned with. We all knowrecords that Noah and Abraham were blessed by God. So, exactly what things did they do before gaining God’s blessings? Let us understand their experiences through studying the Bible and follow their examples.
How did Noah gain God’s blessings?
The Bible records: “And God looked on the earth, and, behold, it was corrupt; for all flesh had corrupted his way on the earth. And God said to Noah, The end of all flesh is come before me; for the earth is filled with violence through them; and, behold, I will destroy them with the earth. Make you an ark of gopher wood; rooms shall you make in the ark, and shall pitch it within and without with pitch. … Thus did Noah; according to all that God commanded him, so did he” (Genesis 6:12-14, 22).
From these scriptures, we can see at that time, before God destroyed the earth with the flood, He called upon Noah to build an ark and told him how to build it. Then Noah did according to God’s instructions one by one. When the flood came, Noah and his seven family members entered the ark and survived. After the flood they lived in God’s blessings and enjoyed the grace that God bestowed. So, how did Noah gain God’s blessings? God’s words give us the answer. God says: “When Noah did as God instructed he didn’t know what God’s intentions were. He didn’t know what God wanted to accomplish. God had only given him a command, instructed him to do something, but without much explanation, and he went ahead and did it. He didn’t try to figure out God’s intentions in private, nor did he resist God or have a double heart. He just went and did it accordingly with a pure and simple heart. Whatever God let him do he did, and obeying and listening to God’s word were his conviction for doing things. That was how straightforwardly and simply he dealt with what God entrusted. His essence—the essence of his actions was obedience, not second-guessing, not resisting, and moreover, not thinking of his own personal interests and his gains and losses. Further, when God said He would destroy the world with a flood, he did not ask when or try to get to the bottom of it, and he certainly did not ask God just how He was going to destroy the world. He simply did as God instructed. However God wanted it to be made and made with what, he did exactly as God asked and also commenced action immediately thereafter.”
“To God, no matter whether a person is great or insignificant, as long as they can listen to Him, obey His instructions and what He entrusts, and can cooperate with His work, His will, and His plan, so that His will and His plan can be accomplished smoothly, then that conduct is worthy of His commemoration and worthy of receiving His blessing. God treasures such people, and He cherishes their actions and their love and affection for Him. This is God’s attitude. So why did God bless Noah? Because this is how God treats such actions and obedience of man.”
From God’s words, we can see: When God entrusted Noah to build an ark, he had never seen an ark, and he did not ask why God let him do this. Instead, his only attitude was obedience to God. He acted based on God’s requirements, treated God’s commission as his responsibility and duty and completed it. Thus, he gained God’s blessings.
How did Abraham gain God’s blessings?
We all know about Abraham’s story. When Abraham was a hundred years old, God bestowed upon him a son, Isaac, but when Isaac grew up, God asked Abraham to offer him up as a burnt offering. Most people find this demand of God to be so inconceivable and give excuses on Abraham’s behalf: Since God had given him a son, why then did God make him offer his son? If God had intended to do this, then why did God give him a son in the first place? However, facing God’s demand, Abraham did not reason with God like this. When God’s trial came upon him, though he could not bear to part with his son and was distressed in his heart, he was very rational and sincerely returned Isaac to God unconditionally in accordance with God’s words and God’s commands. Abraham’s obedience showed God his sincerity, so he received God’s blessings in the end. Just as Genesis 22:16-18 says: “And said, By myself have I sworn, said Jehovah, for because you have done this thing, and have not withheld your son, your only son: That in blessing I will bless you, and in multiplying I will multiply your seed as the stars of the heaven, and as the sand which is on the sea shore; and your seed shall possess the gate of his enemies; And in your seed shall all the nations of the earth be blessed; because you have obeyed my voice.”
How can we receive God’s blessings?
Through reading Noah and Abraham’s stories, we find they had one thing in common: They both listened to and obeyed God. No matter what God said, even if they did not understand God’s will at that time, they were pure, sincerely believed in God, and acted according to God’s words, so in the end they enjoyed God’s blessings. Similarly, if we want to receive God’s blessings, we should be a person who submits to God and listens to His words. At this point, I cannot help thinking of the major event that Christians are all concerned with, that is, all Christians expect to welcome the Lord soon, be raptured into the kingdom of heaven and live in God’s blessings. And I think of the Lord’s words: “I have yet many things to say to you, but you cannot bear them now. However, when he, the Spirit of truth, is come, he will guide you into all truth: for he shall not speak of himself; but whatever he shall hear, that shall he speak: and he will show you things to come” (John 16:12-13). “He that has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the churches” (Revelation 2:7). God’s words tell us that when He returns in the last days, He will speak words and that we should listen to and obey them. So we should submit to and carry out whatever God says to us. By doing this, we will gain truth, life, and God’s approval. I remember thealso said: “He that rejects me, and receives not my words, has one that judges him: the word that I have spoken, the same shall judge him in the last day” (John 12:48). It can be seen from this scripture that the words expressed by God in the last days are to judge us mankind, and purify and change our sinful nature. So, the only thing we should do is listen to and accept God’s words, and act based on them. Only by doing so can we receive God’s blessings. Just as what God says: “Those who … listen to Him and are loyal to Him, and those who obey Him—these are the people who will often receive God’s blessings, and God will bestow such blessings without reservation.” “Today, those who bear genuine love toward Me, people like these are blessed; blessed are those who submit to Me, they will surely stay in My kingdom; blessed are those who know Me, they will surely wield power in My kingdom. … Those who find enjoyment in My words I will bless; they will surely be the pillars that hold up the ridgepole in My kingdom, they will surely have matchless bounty in My house, and no one can compare with them.”
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