The popular theology of the day teaches us how to unlock God’s storehouse of blessings (usually defined as physical and financial prosperity). An honest reading of the scriptures, however, reveals a formula for success that is in stark contrast to what we are being told.
The blessings of God are not without cost. Yes, God made a covenant with Abraham to bless his lineage, but it also contained conditions and exacted a price: absolute obedience and loyalty to God above EVERYTHING. We are not blessed just because we are the children of God; we are blessed because we are the obedient children of God.
Then the angel of the Lord called again to Abraham from heaven. “This is what the Lord says: Because you have obeyed me and have not withheld even your son, your only son, I swear by my own name that I will certainly bless you. I will multiply your descendants beyond number, like the stars in the sky and the sand on the seashore. Your descendants will conquer the cities of their enemies. And through your descendants all the nations of the earth will be blessed—all because you have obeyed me” (Gen. 22:15-18).
Would parents who lavished their children with gifts in spite of the fact that their children were rebellious, disobedient and disrespectful be considered good parents? Why would we expect anything different from our our heavenly Father?
Grace may be free, but it is certainly not cheap.