Day: January 18, 2023

The Benediction (2 Corinthians 13:14) (Part 1)

1.0 The Statement

The New Testament’s Benediction is found in 2Corinthians 13:14 – “The Grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, and the Love of God (the Father), and the Communion (Fellowship) of the Holy Spirit be with you All. Amen.”  The Greek word for “benediction” is “eulogia,” and is formed by “eu” which means “good” and “logia” which means “word.” Therefore “eulogia” means “to express good words.” The common translations of eulogia is: “Eulogy, Praise, Greetings and Benediction.” The Benediction in the Old Testament is recorded in Numbers 6:24-26. This Benediction is given when the Priest leave the Temple after Prayer. He (Priest) would stand outside, raise his hands, and blesses the People who had gathered there. His Blessing would be:

  • “The LORD blesses thee and keeps thee.” (Number 6:24).
  • “The LORD makes His face to shine upon thee and be gracious unto thee.” (Number 6:25).
  • “The LORD lifts up His countenance upon thee and gives thee peace.” (Number 6:26).

1.1 The Old Testament

The Priestly Benediction as recorded in Numbers 6:24-26, is important to Israel and the Church:  

  • “The LORD blesses thee and keeps thee,” is the declaration of the blessing of God the Father. – The First “LORD” (Numbers 6:24) who “blesses and keeps us” corresponds with God the Father. Ephesians 1:3 says, “The God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us with all spiritual blessing in heavenly places in Christ.”
  • “The LORD makes His face to shine upon thee and be gracious unto thee” is the declaration of the blessing of God the Son, our Lord Jesus Christ. – The Second “LORD” (Numbers 6:25) who “makes His face to shine upon us and is gracious to us” corresponds with Christ, who is “the Image of God” (2Corinthians 4:4; Colossians 1:15). No human has looked into God the Father’s Face, but our Lord Jesus Christ, “He who has seen Me has seen the Father” (John 14:9). No one was ever so gracious as Jesus, for “Grace and Truth came through Jesus Christ” (John 1:17). 
  • “The LORD lifts up His Countenance upon thee, and “gives thee Peace” is the declaration of the blessing God the Holy Spirit. – The Third “LORD” (Numbers 6:26) who “lifts up His Countenance upon us and gives us Peace” corresponds with the Holy Spirit. He is sent to lift up Jesus. Speaking of the Holy Spirit’s Ministry, Jesus teaches “He (Spirit) will glorify Me (Jesus), for He will take of what is Mine and declare it to you” (John 16:14). The “Fruit” of the Holy Spirit is “Love, Joy Peace….(Galatians 5:22-23). The Kingdom of God is “righteousness and peace and joy in the Holy Spirit” (Romans 14:7). The Holy Spirit lives in us and keeps us in perfect peace!

The use of “The LORD,” 3 times in Numbers 6:24-26, corresponds with God the Father, God the Son {Jesus}, and God the Holy Spirit. Thus, in the Old Testament, the three Persons in the Godhead (Father, Son {Jesus} and the Holy Spirit) is revealed in the Benediction in Numbers 6:24-26. The Benediction is asking God the Father, God the Son, and God the Holy Spirit to bless, to be gracious and to give peace to His People. The Benediction in the Old Testament lets the People know that the God who is blessing them is the Highest and all Transcending God.

1.2 New Testament

2 Corinthians 13:14 (KJV) “The Grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, and the Love of God, and the Communion of the Holy Spirit be with you All. Amen.” The Benediction in the New Testament draws Believers closer to God and establishes a more intimate relationship by means of:

  1. The Grace of our Lord Jesus Christ.
  2. The Love of God the Father.
  3. The Fellowship of the Holy Spirit.

There is no Reconciliation and Relationship without the Redemption of the Lord Jesus Christ.   Why is “the Grace of the Lord Jesus Christ” put before “the Love of God” in 2Corinthians 13:14? From a theological view point the order should be reversed, but as Benediction, the order is correct:

  • It is through Jesus Christ that the Believers come into their Relationship with God the Father – John 3:16 “For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life.”
  • It is through Christ we receive God’s Love – Isaiah 54:10 “For the mountain shall depart and the hills be removed, but My Love shall not depart from you, nor My Covenant of Peace be removed,’ says the LORD, who has Mercy on you.”
  • It is through Christ that a Believer enters a life of Fellowship (Communion) with the Holy Spirit (John 14:16, 17, 26; John 15:26; John 16:13-15; 1John 2:20, 27).

Thus, Christ’s Grace than is the door through which we enter God the Father’s Love and the Fellowship (Communion) with the Holy Spirit. – Ephesians 2:8-9 “For by GRACE you have been saved through faith, and that not of yourselves; it is the gift of God, not of works, lest anyone should boast.”

To be continued….. Stay Tuned…..