We remember that the true God of Heaven called Abraham out of his Babylon surroundings to establish him in a family structure that would allow His blessing; His sense of being well pleased with us, to flow to all the families of the earth.
Gen 12:1-3 Now the LORD had said unto Abram, Get thee out of thy country, and from thy kindred, and from thy father's house, unto a land that I will shew thee: And I will make of thee a great nation, and I will bless thee, and make thy name great; and thou shalt be a blessing: And I will bless them that bless thee, and curse him that curseth thee: and in thee shall all families of the earth be blessed.
The basis of this family structure rested in respected headship of Abraham by His wife. Her devotion and submission to her husband established his authority in the minds of his children. This in turn strengthened the power of his words. In every command or request that Abraham gave his household there was the seed of a blessing. When members of his household submitted and happily carried out his commands, the blessing of Heaven passed from Abraham to them and they obtained a sense that God was well pleased with them. This sense that God was well pleased with them acted as a barrier against Satan's temptations to seek for power to compensate for insecurity and worthlessness.
Let us notice carefully from the text how God established this system.
1. I will bless thee. The word blessing gives the sense of benefit, congratulate or praise. We get a clue to this blessing in Gen 18:19 where God says “I have known him.” (NKJV) The word “know” means to yada and gives a sense of intimacy. God came close to Abraham and filled him with a sense of acceptance and His personal pleasure in Him. Abraham received the sense that God loved him and was pleased with him.
2. Make thy name great; and thou shalt be a blessing. The word great means estate, honour, position and authority. God would give Abraham a position of authority to pass on the blessing that he received. He became a human channel for the love of God to flow into human hearts. Abraham became the visible source of the fountain of blessing which is our Heavenly Father. The key person that gave Abraham his authority was his wife Sarah. Gen 18:12. Sarah called her husband master or lord as a sign of respect. God blessed her and she became the mother of nations. Gen 17:16. Their headship/submission relationship established the flow of the blessing to the next generation and became the example for all who access this blessing system. Rom 4:16
3. I will bless them that bless thee. Only those who recognize this legitimate authority would receive this sense of acceptance and pleasure of the Father in heaven. Those who submitted and honoured fatherly authority represented by Abraham would receive this blessing.
4. And curse him that curseth thee. Those who resist this legitimate fatherly authority would bring a curse upon themselves. Rather than feeling blessed, loved and a sense of the Father’s pleasure, they would feel worthless, cursed and a sense that they have not pleased the Father.
This history of Abraham and his family is vitally important to understand how God intends to interact with His children on earth. God made a covenant with Abraham and He blessed Abraham and that blessing would flow from him to every family of the earth. Let us notice how the promised blessings of the covenant would be fulfilled.
Gen 18:19 For I know him, that he will command his children and his household after him, and they shall keep the way of the LORD, to do justice and judgment; that the LORD may bring upon Abraham that which he hath spoken of him.
1. For I know Him. More accurately "I have known him" The source of the blessing flowing from God to Abraham is in the intimate relationship between them. God called Abraham His Friend. 2 Chron 20:7; James 2:23. The closeness Abraham had to God allowed him to become like God in character and to be like him in an earthly context. Abraham became a visible source of blessing even as God is the great original source of blessing for the universe. In communion with God, Abraham received that same sense as the Son of God did, a sense of the Father's love and pleasure, that God was well pleased with him. He felt accepted. This is the blessing that Abraham would give to the families of the earth. It was the Spirit of Christ in Abraham that gave him that sense of acceptance. 1 Pet 1:11. In a similar way to the Son of God being blessed by His Father through the inheritance, so Abraham was given this inheritance through the Son.
This was then passed from Abraham to his wife Sarah. The Spirit of Christ in Him which possessed the sense of the pleasure of God was transferred to her through the blessing. His words and acts of affection and guidance become the medium for the Spirit of Christ to bless Sarah. From Sarah, her words and acts of affection towards the children would pass the blessing to them. More importantly, her words and acts of affection towards Abraham would draw out from him even greater blessing that he would pour in both her and His children.
Note carefully that the Spirit of Christ, that beautiful submissive obedient Spirit of Christ which has the sense of acceptance and blessing is the most precious aspect of the inheritance of Abraham. This inheritance is maintained by a careful guarding of the family relationship as we have just described. This is the meaning of the next phrase in Gen 18:19.
2. ...that he will command his children and his household after him, and they shall keep the way of the LORD...
The way of the Lord is to bless and be blessed. To keep the way of the Lord is to recognise the authority through which it comes and submit to it. Abraham submits to God and receives the blessing and speaks words of love and affection and performs acts of kindness to Sarah and she in turn speaks words of love and affection and performs acts of kindness to him which greatly intensifies Abraham's desire and ability to bless both her and His children. This is the Way of the Lord and this must be safely guarded and protected otherwise the inheritance will be lost.
3. ...to do justice and judgment...
Through the Spirit of Christ, Abraham must instruct his family carefully and teach them faithfully. He must bless and love them, protect and cherish them and decide questions of difficulty and query within the home. When this is faithfully done then
4. that the LORD may bring upon Abraham that which he hath spoken of him.
God promised to make Abraham a great nation and to bless him. This could only be done through the careful ordering of the family into a headship/submission structure that would allow the Spirit of Christ to flow into the hearts of all its members. A failure to do this will cause the loss of the inheritance which is the Spirit of Christ - the most precious part of the inheritance.
If we look carefully at this blessing system, we see that to operate correctly there must always be the following ingredients
1. God establishes a point where His blessing flows
2. That blessing flows through a family based structure which means the blessing flows through human channels. No one lives to themselves and no one dies to themselves.
3. The blessing is maintained by recognising and respecting the authority God has established. There is no such thing as being your own authority without reference to a family structure that God has established. Independence and self-determination is death.
It is important to note that this blessing system is available to all who look to Abraham as a spiritual authority and recognise His system of worship. If we bless Abraham and live according to His family principles, the Scripture says that we will be blessed. If we curse Abraham and the God he worships then we will be cursed. This is an unchangeable law.
We will study more carefully the implications of this as we follow the history but I will mention at this point that the Christian church was founded on these Abrahamic principles. Notice the following passages regarding organisation and structure:
Eph 3:15 Of whom the whole family in heaven and earth is named,
1Co 11:3 But I would have you know, that the head of every man is Christ; and the head of the woman is the man; and the head of Christ is God.
1Ti 3:2-5 A bishop [Elder] then must be blameless, the husband of one wife, vigilant, sober, of good behaviour, given to hospitality, apt to teach; Not given to wine, no striker, not greedy of filthy lucre; but patient, not a brawler, not covetous; One that ruleth well his own house, having his children in subjection with all gravity; (For if a man know not how to rule his own house, how shall he take care of the church of God?)
1Ti 5:1 Rebuke not an elder, but intreat him as a father; and the younger men as brethren; The elder women as mothers; the younger as sisters, with all purity.
Tit 2:2-5 That the aged men be sober, grave, temperate, sound in faith, in charity, in patience. The aged women likewise, that they be in behaviour as becometh holiness, not false accusers, not given to much wine, teachers of good things; That they may teach the young women to be sober, to love their husbands, to love their children, To be discreet, chaste, keepers at home, good, obedient to their own husbands, that the word of God be not blasphemed.
There is very clear instruction given that the Christian Church is based on the family. Leaders are to be entreated like fathers and elder women like mothers. They are to be respected. There is a clear headship and submission structure based on the Father and Son relationship in heaven as expressed in 1 Cor 11:3.
The blessing of Abraham which was lost by Israel over the centuries and the captivity in Babylon was restored by Christ and given to the Christian Church through this event.
Mat 3:17 And lo a voice from heaven, saying, This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased.
That wonderful sense of love and acceptance from the Father was given to His Son Jesus who became of the seed of Abraham, because in reality He is and always was the seed of Abraham.
Gal 3:16 Now to Abraham and his seed were the promises made. He saith not, And to seeds, as of many; but as of one, And to thy seed, which is Christ.
Heb 2:16 For verily he took not on him the nature of angels; but he took on him the seed of Abraham.
The Blessing of the Father was then passed to the Apostles
Joh 20:22 And when he had said this, he breathed on them, and saith unto them, Receive ye the Holy Ghost:
And this blessing was then passed through every salutation and blessing of the apostles and to those they appointed.
Eph 1:1-3 Paul, an apostle of Jesus Christ by the will of God, to the saints which are at Ephesus, and to the faithful in Christ Jesus: Grace be to you, and peace, from God our Father, and from the Lord Jesus Christ. Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who hath blessed us with all spiritual blessings in heavenly places in Christ:
Now that we have shown the blessing structure we will continue to look at how this structure operates and what happens when members of the structure fail and block the blessing. How we resolve these issues is vitally important to understand.