One of the blessings of growing in our understanding of God through the Bible is that He tells us what He is going to do, then He does it. We see this in every nook and cranny of our Bibles. A God that reveals what is coming because he wants us to grow in our relationship with Him. Let’s look at four markers of God’s blessing, and conversely the consequences of our disobedience.
It is easy to be tempted to skip reading Old Testament passages from the Bible. I am not just talking about the genealogies. There are many passages that are difficult to understand because our lives are so much different than those in the Bible. The names, the places and even the figures of speech, the climate, the holiday and even the customs are foreign to us today. But if we spend some time understanding the context of these passages many gems of insight are available to be discovered.
Leviticus 26 is one such portion of Scripture. It is in this passage that God reveals four markers of His blessing in our lives. The lack of these markers reveals the inverse, the absence of God’s blessing. But before we dive in let me remind us that God’s working is always in progressive waves of blessing or waves or correction. God’s work in our lives is a process to move us to obedience. Obedience leads to greater blessing, while disobedience leads to progressive greater consequences or correction.
The Lord is the source of my prosperity. “If you walk in my statutes and observe my commandments and do them, then I will give you your rains in their season, and the land shall yield its increase, and the trees of the field shall yield their fruit.” (Leviticus 26:3–4) Living in the Northwest the promise of rain does not seem like much of a blessing. But if you are a farmer in a more arid location, before irrigation, rain was essential to your prosperity.
The Lord is the source of my peace. “And you shall eat your bread to the full and dwell in your land securely. I will give peace in the land, and you shall lie down, and none shall make you afraid.” (Leviticus 26:5b–6a) One of our greatest desires is for peace. It is one of our greatest needs today, but we are reminded that it is realized in a growing relationship with the Lord.
The Lord is the source of my provision. “I will turn to you and make you fruitful and multiply you and will confirm my covenant with you. You shall eat old store long kept, and you shall clear out the old to make way for the new.” (Leviticus 26:9–10) The Lord is the one that is meeting my needs.
The Lord is the source of my Presence. “I will make my dwelling among you, and my soul shall not abhor you.” (Leviticus 26:11) It is the Lord’s presence in my life that brings a fullness of spirit and attitude.
If you are sensing a need in your life in one of these areas, I encourage you to lean into the Lord and allow Him to work in your life. The first best step is to get back to the basics of the Christian life. It is there that the Lord meets us, like in our Bible reading, to take us to where we need to be.
-Pastor Joe Parkinson