TODAY’S READING: MARK 14
“Again the high priest asked him, ‘Are you the Christ, the Son of the Blessed?” – Mark 14:61
Jesus was asked this question by the high priest during his trial the night he was crucified. Instead of asking if Jesus was the son of God, the high priest asked if Jesus was the son of the Blessed. Therefore, God is the Blessed.
Why is God the Blessed?
What does it mean that God is the Blessed?
The Greek word translated “the Blessed” in Mark 14:61 is eulogetos. It is always used in reference to God as “the Blessed.” God is not called “the Blessed” because we speak a blessing to him or about him. Rather, eulogetos is an adjective that describes who God is. God is blessed, He is eulogetos, because that is his nature, his person.
Eulogetos is a compound Greek word. The first part is eu, which means good or well. The second part is logos, which means something said, including the thought, word, reasoning, logic.
To say that God is “the Blessed” is to quite literally say that God is the Good Word.
Is this not the first thing we learn about God in the Bible, that he is the Good Word?
In Genesis 1, God speaks, or words, the creation into existence. His word creates. And, after everything that God speaks, or words, Genesis 1 says that God saw that it was good. By the end of his work, God said that everything he created was not just good but very good.
So, John starts his gospel, “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was in the beginning with God. All things were made through him, and without him was not any thing made that was made.” (John 1:1-3)
Jesus is the Word, the logos. By starting his gospel, “in the beginning,” John is saying that is the word that is spoken that creates and is called good.
Eulogetos is used eight times in the New Testament. Eight is the number of new beginning and new creation. God is the Blessed, the Good Worded, because he is ushering in a new creation, a new word that makes all things good, indeed very good, through Jesus Christ.
Twice God is called the Blessed in connection with showing us mercy and comfort (2 Corinthians 1:3, 1 Peter 1:3). He is called the Blessed he is the Creator that spoke the truth – he creates good and only good – in opposition to the creature that spoke God was not good and only good to us (Romans 1:25). God is called the Blessed because he has visited us and redeemed us in Jesus Christ (Luke 1:68).
Why is God the Blessed?
Because he is the Good Word.
Because what he speaks is good, very good, only good.
Because he creates good through what he speaks, his word, Jesus.
It’s interesting to look at the other forms of eulogetos in the New Testament. Their use testifies of God, the Blessed.
Eulogeo is to bless, to praise, to speak well of. It is a verb and, therefore, the act of blessing. We could say that it is the act of “good wording.”
Ephesians 1:3 says, “Blessed [eulogetos] be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed [eulogeo] in Christ.”
God, the Good Worded, has good worded us in Christ.
Hebrews 4:12 says, “For the word of God is living and active, sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing to the division of soul and of spirit, of joints and of marrow, and discerning the thoughts and intentions of the heart.”
The word of God is a sword. Therefore, the word of God separates. It separates the flesh from the spirit in us.
But, notice that when God spoke his word to create what is good in Genesis 1 it separated. God separated the light from the dark, the waters above from the waters below, the land from the seas.
So, creation is the process of separation. Interestingly, eulogeo is used 41 times in the New Testament. The number 41 to separation through the flow of time, the process of separation. Study the lives of the patriarchs and you fill find that often the 41st mention of their name is connected with separation. Rehoboam became king when he was 41 years old. And, he was the king when Israel was separated into two kingdoms. Israel camped 41 times in the wilderness as they were separated from Egypt and led to the promised land.
So, we are “good worded” in Christm created by the separating power of the word of God that is living and active. We are made a new creation in Christ.
2 Corinthians 5:17 says, “Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation. The old has passed away; behold, the new has come.”
In Luke 6:27-28, Jesus said, “But I say to you who hear, Love your enemies, do good to those who hate you, bless [eulogeo] those who curse you, pray for those who abuse you.”
Paul says the same thing in Romans 12:14, “Bless [eulogeo] those who persecute you; bless [eulogeo] and do not curse them.”
We are quite literally “good word” our enemies, those who curse us, into a new creation.
Eulogia is a blessing, a generous gift, praise. Eulogia is a noun. It is the actual blessing.
Ephesians 1:3 says, “Blessed [eulogetos] be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed [eulogeo] us in Christ with every spiritual blessing [eulogia] in heavenly places.”
The Good Word has good worded us with every spiritual good wording.
God has given us every spiritual gift.
What is the supreme gift we have received?
“For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life.” (John 3:16)
Jesus is the gift above all gifts we have received from God. Jesus is every spiritual blessing, every spiritual good wording, we have received.
Why did God give us this gift, his son, Jesus Christ?
Because he loved the world.
So, it is quite interesting that eulogia is used 16 times in the New Testament. The number 16 symbolizes love. In 1 Corinthians 13, Paul lists 16 characteristics of love. You find a connection between agape, love, and 16 throughout the New Testament
But, we just don’t receive a blessing. We are to be a blessing to others.
In 2 Corinthians 9, Paul was writing to the Corinthian church about the offering they were taking for the poor in Jerusalem. Verses 5-6 say, “So I thought it necessary to urge the brothers to go on ahead to you and arrange in advance for the gift [eulogia] you have promised, so that it may be ready as a willing gift [eulogia], not as an exaction. The point is this: whoever sows sparingly will also reap sparingly, and whoever sows bountifully [eulogia] will also reap bountifully [eulogia].
So, God is the Blessed because he is the Good Worded that good words us with good words. In his Good Word, Jesus Christ, who is living and active, he separates us from the flesh and the things of this world to make us a new creation. As new creations we to good word our enemies through good wordings so that everything becomes part of the new creation, summed up in Jesus Christ. This is our part in the ministry of reconciliation.