God Is the Giver of Every Blessing

Since Adam and Eve, in the Garden of Eden, chose the rulership of Satan in the Garden of Eden over that of God, their Creator, human beings have suffered many calamities and sorrows.

Yet, God has also greatly blessed humanity, as well, especially the descendants of Abraham in the latter days. The apostle James, a half-brother of Jesus Christ, wrote, “Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, and comes down from the Father of lights, with whom there is no variation or shadow of turning” (James 1:17).

We may look around us and see all kinds of evils, and things to be concerned about, but we also need to be mindful of our blessings. And the Bible promises that in a future age, there are even greater blessings to come. In this article I want to explore the subject of God as the Giver of every blessing.

I’m going to show you from the Scriptures, that testify of God’s intervention in human affairs, how God is the source of specific blessings. Those discussed below are by no means an exhaustive list of God’s blessings, but they are fundamental to life and happiness, and too often we take them for granted.

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Three Resurrections

According to Scripture the Kingdom of God will be established on earth at the time of the second coming of Jesus Christ (Daniel 7:13-14; Revelation 11:15-18). Foretold is a resurrection to occur at that time, to be followed by other resurrections later.

The hope of the resurrection enters into the faith of all who believe the true gospel (Acts 24:15; I Corinthians 15:4, 11).

But upon what is that belief predicated? The second coming of Jesus Christ is predicated on the reality of his first coming. And the resurrection that will occur at Christ’s second coming is predicated on the reality of the resurrection of Jesus Christ following his death at the time of his first coming. And so also are other resurrections spoken of in the Bible.

Let’s examine what the Bible reveals about the resurrections, beginning with the resurrection of Jesus Christ.

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The Two Covenants — Part 5

In previous articles in our Two Covenants series we’ve discussed the relationship between the Old and New Covenants, and reasons why the Old Covenant was given.

To review, we’ve discussed the concept that the Old Covenant was a type of the New Covenant. It was given as an introduction to living spiritual principles. But as it was a shadow, or type or figure of the New, it was not the full reality of what the New Covenant encompasses. For example, the sacrifices under the Old Covenant were among other things a type of Christ’s sacrifice, but they were not the reality of the sacrifice itself.

Reasons for the giving of the Old Covenant that we discussed included:

(1) The Separation and preservation of a people for God.

(2) A tutor or schoolmaster pointing to Christ.

(3) A form of knowledge and truth.

(4) To teach the nature and effect of sin.

(5) To reveal the need for the Holy Spirit.

Later in this article our focus shifts to the New Covenant.

But first, we will briefly list some other important reasons for the giving of the Old Covenant in addition to the five already discussed. This list is not intended to be exhaustive, but will furnish food for thought.

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Melchizedek Mystery

A character appears in the book of Genesis who has been the subject of mystery, of wonder, of speculation. His name as given in Scripture is Melchizedek. Who is Melchizedek, and why should his identity matter to you?

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Mankind’s Last Best Hope

In his “Second Annual Message” to Congress of December 1, 1862 President Abraham Lincoln proposed a plan for amendments to the Constitution to end slavery in the United States, with concessions he hoped would bring an end to the Civil War and reconcile the rebel states to the Union. In September of 1862 Lincoln had issued the Emancipation Proclamation, as an executive order which changed the legal status of enslaved persons in states in rebellion against the United States as of January 1, 1863, giving any enslaved persons in those states the status of free men or women under United States law. The Emancipation Proclamation applied only to slaves living in the rebel states, or serving in any segment of the executive branch of the U.S. government. However, it encouraged or required six states to abolish slavery during the war, including three Confederate states which had largely come under control of the Union army, and three Union border states. It also freed slaves living in other rebel areas which had been occupied by the Union. The plan for the Constitutional amendments proposed in 1862 was never acted on.

The plan was different from the thirteenth Constitutional amendment Lincoln championed in 1864-65 to permanently and immediately end slavery in the United States. By late 1864 the defeat of the Confederacy by Union forces was eminent, negating any rationale for concessions in the ending of slavery for political reasons. The thirteenth amendment was passed by Congress in January 1865, about two and a half months before General Lee’s surrender at Appomattox Court House, Virginia, which effectively ended the Civil War. The thirteenth amendment had been ratified by a sufficient number of states to become law by December 6, 1865.

In his “Second Annual Message,” early in the Civil War, when things weren’t going so well for the Union army (cf. Battle Cry of Freedom, James M. McPherson, pp. 560-561), Lincoln described the United States as “the last, best hope of earth.” William Lee Miller, a professor of ethics, who has taught at several universities, in his book “Lincoln’s Virtues,” states the following concerning the phrase “the last, best hope of earth”:

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