“I will bless those who bless you, and I will curse him who curses you; and in you all the families of the earth shall be blessed.” (Genesis 12:3)
Because God placed His favor upon Abraham and his seed, the Adversary has sought to destroy God’ people, most notably those called Israel. Throughout history, nations and individuals have attempted to curse Israel only to find that they have brought a curse upon themselves. For example the seer Balaam tried, on three occasions, to curse Israel but couldn’t. In the end, his efforts to harass God’s people brought retribution down on his own head. I would argue that, ultimately, it is impossible to curse what God has blessed.
In sharp contrast to those who would curse Israel, those people and nations that have treated Israel with favor have prospered. Perhaps that prosperity is connected to the statement, “In you shall all the families of the earth be blessed,” but more importantly, it was always the Creator’s intention that Israel would be a light to the nations. Through Abraham’s seed, the nations would be blessed to learn of the One God and be invited to join the family of faith.
To underscore that point, it is important to closely consider the Hebrew wording of Genesis 12:3. According to rabbinic commentary, the phrase translated as “And in you shall be blessed” has interesting connotations. The verb ונברכו v’niv’rechu is related to a Mishnaic term meaning to “intermingle or graft.” In other words, it is more likely that God told Abraham, “All the families of the earth will be grafted into you.” No doubt this is why Paul made this statement:
“And the Scripture, foreseeing that God would justify the Gentiles by faith, preached the gospel to Abraham beforehand, saying, ‘In you all the nations shall be blessed.’ So then those who are of faith are blessed with believing Abraham. (Galatians 3:8-9)
This message is amplified by what Paul addressed in Romans 11 — our being grafted into the family tree through the Messiah. Because Yeshua is the seed of Abraham (Gal. 3:16), those who are in Him are also regarded as being the seed of Abraham (Gal. 3:29). You and I are evidence that the statement made to Abraham has come true: through his obedience, untold millions have been blessed to become part of the family of faith. Most importantly, we must acknowledge that through one man’s sacrifice, that is Messiah, untold millions have come out of darkness into His marvelous light. Indeed, all the families of the earth have been blessed.
Blessings and Shalom,