We hear so much about “blessings”.  What exactly are they, and whom do they pertain to, and how do we get them?  After all, we want to be blessed, right?  Well, the Old Testament talks a lot about blessings, and God always tells us in His Word, that His blessings are for those who are diligent to obey His Voice.  Here is just a small sampling of blessings from Deuteronomy 28:1-14:

28 And it shall come to pass, if thou shalt hearken diligently unto the voice of the Lord thy God, to observe and to do all his commandments which I command thee this day, that the Lord thy God will set thee on high above all nations of the earth: And all these blessings shall come on thee, and overtake thee, if thou shalt hearken unto the voice of the Lord thy God. Blessed shalt thou be in the city, and blessed shalt thou be in the field. Blessed shall be the fruit of thy body, and the fruit of thy ground, and the fruit of thy cattle, the increase of thy kine, and the flocks of thy sheep. Blessed shall be thy basket and thy store. Blessed shalt thou be when thou comest in, and blessed shalt thou be when thou goest out. The Lord shall cause thine enemies that rise up against thee to be smitten before thy face: they shall come out against thee one way, and flee before thee seven ways. The Lord shall command the blessing upon thee in thy storehouses, and in all that thou settest thine hand unto; and he shall bless thee in the land which the Lord thy God giveth thee. The Lord shall establish thee an holy people unto himself, as he hath sworn unto thee, if thou shalt keep the commandments of the Lord thy God, and walk in his ways. And all people of the earth shall see that thou art called by the name of the Lord; and they shall be afraid of thee. And the Lord shall make thee plenteous in goods, in the fruit of thy body, and in the fruit of thy cattle, and in the fruit of thy ground, in the land which the Lord sware unto thy fathers to give thee. The Lord shall open unto thee his good treasure, the heaven to give the rain unto thy land in his season, and to bless all the work of thine hand: and thou shalt lend unto many nations, and thou shalt not borrow. And the Lord shall make thee the head, and not the tail; and thou shalt be above only, and thou shalt not be beneath; if that thou hearken unto the commandments of the Lord thy God, which I command thee this day, to observe and to do them: And thou shalt not go aside from any of the words which I command thee this day, to the right hand, or to the left, to go after other gods to serve them.

OK, you’ve read that.  Now, those are MATERIAL blessings the LORD made available to those who diligently obey Him.  Would you like some of that?  Would you like to know how to have that?  I will tell you how: You must do what God said, and that is to diligently hearken to His voice to OBEY Him.  There are more, but you get the idea.  But there’s something MISSING here.  What is it?  SALVATION!  You see, there are blessings available for obeying the laws of God, but there is no salvation offered by obeying the law.
Enter now into the New Testament, and we have the offer of SALVATION by faith in Christ Jesus of Nazareth, Y’shua Messiah.  But people still want the BLESSING! What are we to do?   The New Testament does not promise material blessing!  I find it interesting that people tell me, we are  no longer under the law.  Well, Christ Jesus himself said this in Matthew 5:17-20,

Think not that I am come to destroy the law, or the prophets: I am not come to destroy, but to fulfil. For verily I say unto you, Till heaven and earth pass, one jot or one tittle shall in no wise pass from the law, till all be fulfilled. Whosoever therefore shall break one of these least commandments, and shall teach men so, he shall be called the least in the kingdom of heaven: but whosoever shall do and teach them, the same shall be called great in the kingdom of heaven. For I say unto you, That except your righteousness shall exceed the righteousness of the scribes and Pharisees, ye shall in no case enter into the kingdom of heaven.

Ok, now where did Jesus say it is ok to forsake the law?  He didn’t.  AND He said that your righteousness must EXCEED that which may be obtained by keeping the law.  How can you achieve that? By doing what He said in Revelation 14:12,  Here is the patience of the saints: here are they that keep the commandments of God, and the faith of Jesus. And He said that whosoever obeyed the commandments and teaches others to do so,  would be great in the kingdom of heaven.  I’d like to be great there, wouldn’t you?

Did you see that?  He said we must keep the law AND have the faith of Jesus.  Not one or the other, but BOTH.  Well, here’s where a lot of people miss it: they want the blessings of Abraham, but don’t want to keep the laws of God.  They want everlasting life, but don’t want to follow the instructions of the Bible.  Ok, suppose you just want everlasting life with Jesus, and you don’t want to be blessed in your earthly life, can you do that?  I guess so, but WHY would you want to miss out on the blessings?  There are obviously people who dearly love Jesus, but are poor, sick, and depressed. Is that God’s plan?  No, He wants you blessed, too.  BUT, to be blessed, you must be obedient, and if you’re saying that Jesus did away with the law, you’re in rebellion to Him, and you will NOT be reaping God’s blessings in this life to any great extent.

Do you understand what I’m saying here?  The Old Testament offered material blessings for obedience to the laws of God, but not salvation.  The New Testament offers salvation in Christ Jesus, but not material blessings.  To have both, you must DO both.  Does God change?  NO!  He saw the Old Testament was not perfect, in that it did not include salvation, so He gave us a new and Better Covenant, like when you buy a new car: you can buy the basic model that includes certain equipment.  If you buy the upgraded model, you get everything included in the basic model PLUS more.

Salvation is by GRACE, you cannot earn it.  Blessings come by OBEDIENCE.  The LORD once helped me understand this by saying to me, “In My Father’s house are many dwelling places.  You can’t earn one, it’s my gift to you.  But if you want any furniture in it, you must work for it.”  Well I understood that real easily, and it ended the confusion in my understanding of the plan of salvation.

Some  insist the Old Testament laws are gone.  Well, tell me which ones YOU think are gone?  Are the Ten Commandment still in effect?  Sure they are, all ten of them, including the fourth one that everyone seems to want to ignore. Does the law replace grace?  NO.  Does grace replace the law?  NO.  They are actually the same package with two components; blessings and salvation.  The Apostle Paul explained it, and yet, he warned not to let the Jews draw you back into the laws which contained the traditions of men.  Paul kept the Sabbath, by the way, in case you’re wondering.  He taught in the temple on the Sabbath, and taught the gentiles on other days as well.
Why then do I still keep the laws of God when we are under grace?  Do you show God you love Him by being a lawbreaker?  No, I show God I love Him by doing what His Word says, and by keeping His commandments.  I know I can’t win or earn salvation by works, but only by faith in the finished work of Christ Jesus.  I love His blessings that come from being an obedient child of God.  I don’t want to be a rebellious, snot-nosed brat.  But do you know that even a rebellious snot-nosed brat is still a child of the parent, but is that parent pleased with his child?  Probably NOT.  I’d rather please my heavenly Father by obeying His commandments, rather than casting them to the ground and insisting His commandments no longer apply to ME!  Think about that today, and if your heart tells you that you’d better start keeping His commandments in addition to your faith in Christ Jesus, then don’t fight it, just DO it.

You’re not “earning” your salvation by keeping the commandments, you’re earning blessings, and that’s the best of both worlds.