Reflections: Blessings Jacob and Esau Part Four
Genesis 31.22 - 32.32
“Let me go, for it is daybreak” said the man.
“I will not let you go unless you bless me.” Replied Jacob.
The man asked “What is your name?”
“You name will no longer be Jacob, but Israel, because you have struggled with God and with man and have over come.” (Genesis 32.26 & .27)
Jacob’s story is our story. In fact I would say that most of the stories in the Bible are our stories as well. We find the struggles, triumphs, set back and successes of the men and women we read about in our own lives. The truth of these stories is not that they just happened once but that they continue to happen.
Jacob has for years been trying to make his way in the world far from home. He starts life deceiving his brother and father. The middle of his life is spent working for his uncle who keeps taking advantage of him. The relationships he has with his wives and children are dysfunctional. Jacob is responsible for most of the mess he is in because of some sinful and selfish choices he has made.
The one hope we find is that the LORD is with him. Jacob isn’t always with the LORD but the LORD is always with Jacob.
At the end of his story Jacob flees his uncle and heads back home. He knows he must face his brother, Esau, whom he stole a great deal from. Unknown to Jacob he has to meet the LORD first. After a night of wrestling with the LORD, the LORD wants to go but Jacob won’t let Him. Instead Jacob wants a blessing first. What blessing does the LORD give Jacob? Confession and Change
The first blessing is Confession. The LORD asks for his name. The answer is “Deceiver.” He has lived up to the meaning of his name.
The second blessing is change. The LORD changes his name from Jacob/Deceiver to Israel/God Wrestler. Israel is no longer the deceiver, he is now someone new.
Just like Jacob we can not receive the blessing of change from the LORD without first admitting who we are and confessing it. Only then can we be changed into what we are supposed to be, Israel.