Guest / Limited Access /
The Right Way to Give Someone a Blessing

Blessing is the projection of good into the life of another. It isn't just words. It's the actual putting forth of your will for the good of another person. It always involves God, because when you will the good of another person, you realize only God is capable of bringing that. So we naturally say, "God bless you."

You can bless someone when you will their good under the invocation of God. You invoke God on their behalf to support the good that you will for them. This is the nature of blessing. It is what we are to receive from God and then give to another.

Now we need to deepen that just a little bit, because it isn't just a verbal performance. It isn't "bless you" said through gritted teeth. It's a generous outpouring of our whole being into blessing the other person. So, among other things, you don't want to hurry a blessing. It becomes a habit that we say thoughtlessly, "God bless." Well, that's better than a lot of other things we could say, but we want to be able to put our whole self into our blessing. That is something we need to be thoughtful about. We don't just rattle off a blessing. It's a profoundly personal and powerful act.

In Numbers 6:24–26, we find the great Aaronic blessing. This is the blessing Moses instructed his brother, Aaron, to place on the people of Israel. Thank God for it! When you try to improve on it, you realize you are not going to make much headway.

"The Lord bless you." That means "God bring good consistently into your life." "The Lord bless you and keep you." That means "God protect you. God build around you his safekeeping. The blood of Jesus and the Spirit of Christ be ...

Subscriber access only You have reached the end of this Article Preview

To continue reading, subscribe now. Subscribers have full digital access.

Support Christian thought journalism. Donate to our nonprofit ministry today.
From Issue:
Read These NextSee Our Latest
Also in this IssueWhy We're Losing the War on Poverty
Subscriber Access Only Why We're Losing the War on Poverty
Lawyer-activist Gary Haugen explains the ignored, brutal force that keeps the poor in their place.
RecommendedDeconversion: Some Thoughts on Bart Campolo’s Departure from Christianity
Deconversion: Some Thoughts on Bart Campolo’s Departure from Christianity
Bart Campolo's departure from Christianity–some reflections about faith and (our) families.
Trending‘Worst Year Yet’: The Top 50 Countries Where It’s Hardest to Be a Christian
‘Worst Year Yet’: The Top 50 Countries Where It’s Hardest to Be a Christian
Islamic extremism now has a rival, according to 2017 World Watch List.
Editor's PickLatasha Morrison: The Church Is the ‘Only Place Equipped to Do Racial Reconciliation Well’
Latasha Morrison: The Church Is the ‘Only Place Equipped to Do Racial Reconciliation Well’
The founder of Be the Bridge reveals her vision for solving America's race problem.
%%var.bookTitle%%
Living in Christ's Presence: Final Words on Heaven and the Kingdom of God
IVP Books
2014-01-23
192 pp., $18.87
Buy %%var.bookTitle%% from Amazon
Christianity Today
The Right Way to Give Someone a Blessing
hide thisJanuary/February January/February

In the Magazine

January/February 2014

To continue reading, subscribe now for full print and digital access.