Wrestling with God

For anyone who has or is wrestling with God, I thought you might enjoy the cliff notes from a sermon I heard yesterday. The minister taught from an unusual passage in Genesis 32 where Jacob and the angel of the Lord wrestled all night as Jacob was taking his family back home after an absence of 20 years.

“When the [angel] saw that he did not prevail against Jacob, he touched his hip socket, and Jacob’s hip was put out of joint as he wrestled with him.”

“Then he (the Angel of the Lord) said, ‘Let me go, for the day has broken.’ But Jacob said, ‘I will not let you go unless you bless me.'” The angel then gave Jacob a new name and a new purpose: Israel.

The minister then pointed out something really interesting to me. God’s injury to Jacob was a gift. Jacob’s angry brother Esau was going to intercept him with 400 soldiers the next morning and was planning to slaughter Jacob and his family. Had God not injured Jacob so that he was humiliated with a limp, he may have been killed by Esau. Instead, this now humbled man walked out to meet his brother, limping along and bowing down to the earth 7 times in respect. His humility before his brother changed the way he was received and Esau ran to Israel and embraced him. His wrestling match with God changed the future.