JACOB WRESTLES WITH GOD
After sending the presents he had prepared for Esau ahead of him, the Bible says ” And he arose that night and took his two wives, his two female servants, and his eleven sons, and crossed over the ford of Jabbok. He took them, sent them over the brook, and sent over what he had. Then Jacob was left alone; and a Man wrestled with him until the breaking of day. Now when He saw that He did not prevail against him, He touched the socket of his hip; and the socket of Jacob’s hip was out of joint as He wrestled with him. And He said, “Let Me go, for the day breaks.”But he said, “I will not let You go unless You bless me!” So He said to him, “What is your name?” He said, “Jacob.” And He said, “Your name shall no longer be called Jacob, but Israel; for you have struggled with God and with men, and have prevailed.” Then Jacob asked, saying, “Tell me Your name, I pray.” And He said, “Why is it that you ask about My name?” And He blessed him there. So Jacob called the name of the place Peniel: “For I have seen God face to face, and my life is preserved.” (Genesis 32:22-30).
On his way to Haran, The LORD appeared to him in his dream, and now on his way back, God met him and wrestled with him. My understanding of the wrestling with the Angel of God was that Jacob needed to be restored to God so as to be able to reconcile with his estranged brother. Two things happened to Jacob in this encounter with the Angel of the LORD that were major event in his life. The Angel of the LORD blessed him and changed his name from Jacob to Israel. Next he put a permanent mark on him to remind him of this encounter. Jacob’s hip that was out of joint could be likened to a scar that kept reminding him of the day he received a new name which is better than the old name “Jacob”. God also changed the name of Abraham and Sarah when He pronounced blessing of making them father and mother of nations. Name seems to be a vital part of who we are and what our destiny would be. Jacob needed to get out of the habit of always wanting to supersede and replace another person, but rather to be content with whom God had made him to be. He was actually made a fighter, who had the courage to face any battle with any man and then prevailed. That was what we were made to see when he wrestled with the Angel of God and would not let him go until the Angel blessed him.
What habit do you have that God needs to take out of your life so that your life can be pleasing unto Him? You need an encounter with the LORD who is able to break and remold you to whom He wants you to be. Unfortunately many of us do not see ourselves as we really are. So it is only the MAKER that knows us from inside out, that can do the total cleansing. He says in Jeremiah 18 that He is the PORTER and we are the CLAY. He can remold us if we surrender ourselves to Him. I hope you have been enjoying the various lessons we are learning from the life of our Forefathers in the LORD. Let us continue to wrestle with the LORD in our prayers until we receive our own blessings and breakthroughs. We must not relent in our effort to seek our green pasture so as to be able to get to our own RESTING PLACE as He had ordained for us.
Definitely the life of Jacob who became Israel was not the same again. The Jacob that supplanted Esau was not the one that was about to meet Esau because he’s been changed. Using the slang of today, “I would say he is born again” This spiritual life is very important to every one who wants to make Heaven. So we too must seek that divine nature that enables us to escape the corruption of this world through lust. Let me conclude with 1 Peter 1:3-5 which reads “ Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who according to His abundant mercy has begotten us again to a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, to an inheritance, incorruptible and undefiled and that does not fade away, reserved in heaven for you, who are kept by the power of God through faith for salvation ready to be revealed in the last time.” May the Grace of the LORD continue to multiply unto us through our knowledge of God and of Jesus Christ our LORD, Amen.