By the blessing of the upright the city is exalted,
But it is overthrown by the mouth of the wicked.
Did you know your faith has a direct impact on the culture around you? This impact is not just to hear the testimony of the word, but God also testifies of His goodness by blessing the culture around you. We see several examples of this in the Bible. In the Old Testament, God exalted Joseph while still in slavery by blessing the house of his master. It was a testimony that God was with Joseph. When Jacob was in flight from the brother who wanted to murder him, he went to live with his uncle, Laban. He served Laban for the right to marry his daughters. After fulfilling his obligation, Laban made a deal to keep Jacob with him saying, “Experience has shown me that God has blessed me because of you.”
Those in God’s heart are blessed and by their faithfulness, God blesses the city. God also spares judgment based on the righteousness of His people. When God declared the coming judgment of the five cities of the plain in Genesis (this included Sodom and Gomorrah), the Lord agreed to spare all five cities if He found ten righteous living among them. Through historical records we know there were nearly 350,000 people living in these cities. Yet God agreed to overlook the wickedness of the masses if only ten were found. Unfortunately, there were not ten.
When Jerusalem turned to idolatry, the Lord said, “I sought for a man who would stand in the gap for the city.” He then sent Ezekiel into the city to go down every street. God promised that if the prophet found one righteous man, He would spare the whole city.
This is where you become the blessing for those around you. First, God has mercy on those around you if you are faithful in your walk. Second, when God blesses your life, it becomes a blessing to the culture around you. God’s blessings are not for us to wallow in, but for us to become the hand of grace to those around us.
God promised, “The man who fears the Lord shall be blessed.” Let me remind you that man used in this context is mankind – it applies to any who walk with the Lord. The Bible says that the eyes of the Lord search the world for the purpose of showing Himself strong on behalf of those whose hearts are completely His.
Is your heart completely His? It’s God’s desire to bless and prosper each one of us and to do so with the goal of our eternal good. If we are filled with our ways, we can’t discover God’s ways. Allowing God to take our hearts, dreams, and desires, and then replace them with His will is the true source of satisfaction. Then we have the blessing of the upright which spreads to the culture around us.