The Perfect Smile
The LORD make his face shine upon thee, and be gracious unto thee: ~Numbers 6:25
Over the recent holidays, my family took a lot of photographs. Before each photograph, we told everyone to smile. One of two things usually happened after the photo is taken: either one or more of us would not be satisfied with our smile (or lack of), or we would say that our smile was perfect and move on to the next photo. A smile is said to be worth a thousand words. In Numbers 6:25, the benediction, “The LORD make his face shine upon thee” means the Lord smile upon thee. The Lord’s smiling upon us is the perfect smile.
We see the Lord’s sanction.
In Numbers 6:23-27, Aaron and his sons were commanded to bless the children of Israel. The blessing is threefold. Foremost in this blessing is the guarantee of the Lord’s presence. The greatest assurance that we have as God’s children is the assurance of His everlasting presence. Jesus said in Matthew 28:20, “Lo, I am with you alway, even unto the end of the world.” Paul tells us in Hebrews 13:5, “Let your conversation be without covetousness; and be content with such things as ye have: for he hath said, I will never leave thee, nor forsake thee.” David testified, “though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil: for thou art with me.” The smile of our Lord means we have His approval and favor on us.
We see the Lord’s supply.
“...And be gracious unto thee.” All of God’s gifts are the outpouring of His grace. Grace is God’s unmerited love bestowed on us. “The LORD... be gracious unto thee” is all encompassing of His supply. We see His grace in salvation. “For by grace are ye saved through faith.” We see His grace when we make sacrifices. "But my God shall supply all your need according to his riches in glory by Christ Jesus." We see His grace when we are suffering. "My grace is sufficient for thee." We see His grace for serving. "Let us have grace, whereby we may serve God acceptably." Let us remember that God gives us grace and, when needed, more grace.
We see the Lord’s safety.
“The LORD lift up his countenance upon thee, and give thee peace.” The Lord’s smile and presence provides for our safety and protection. I think about the disciples when they were on the Sea of Galilee with Jesus, and a major storm came on them. He looked on the faces of His disciples and then upon the sea and said, “Peace, be still.” At that very moment, His words calmed the storm and the waves. I am thankful that the Lord’s smile drives away the storms of life. I am thankful that His smile invites me to hide under the shadow of His wings, where no harm can break through.
We see the Lord’s sustainability.
The threefold blessing given by Aaron and his sons is the hope that sustains us throughout our spiritual journey. His smile strengthens our faith. His smile encourages us to carry our cross and follow Him. His smile tells us that He is pleased when we worship Him in spirit and truth. His smile is His timely comfort and good hope during seasons of discouragement and anxiety. I think of when Paul was stoned at Lystra. It was the smile of our Lord that strengthened him to rise up and go back into the city. I think of when Paul and Silas were imprisoned at Philippi. It was His smile that moved them to pray and sing praises. The prayer for God’s blessing is needed to hold us up during all seasons of life. “The LORD make his face shine upon thee, and be gracious unto thee." "The blessing of the LORD, it maketh rich, and he addeth no sorrow with it.” Let’s not just seek His blessing, but also be worthy of it.
Have a blessing-filled God Morning!
Bible Reading Schedule: Genesis 4-7