A REAL TRANSFORMATION
Monday, 20 May 2019
Genesis 32 : 22-32
So Jacob called the name of the place Peniel: “For I have seen God face to face, and my life is preserved.” (Genesis 32:30)
The chapter starts with the assurance of God’s protection for Jacob as heads back to his homeland (Gen 32:1). Jacob had great fear anticipating the meeting of his brother Esau, who he heard was on the way to meet him with 400 men. As his fears grew, Jacob prays to the Lord acknowledging his unworthiness before God (Gen 32:9-10). It is here we see him surrendering his life to God’s hands.
But none of these things assured his heart as his fears grew and finally after sending everyone across the ford of Jabbok, Jacob was left alone (Gen 32:22-23). This is where our reading starts from and we see a man wrestling with Jacob until the break of day (Gen 32:24). The real transformation in Jacobs’s life begins. When we empty ourselves and give place to Jesus Christ, we can see great changes happen in our lives. Let us see the what happened to Jacob in his encounter relating it to our spiritual journey:
A Wrestling with God (Gen 32:24-25)- Beyond the physical wrestling, it is written in Hosea 12: 3-4 “..when he became a man, he even fought with God. Yes, he wrestled with the angel and won. He wept and pleaded for a blessing from him. There at Bethel he met God face to face, and God spoke to him.” His deeper cry and pleading towards God was nothing less than earnest prayer and total surrender. Today when we approach Him in prayer, the first thing should be nothing but a real humility to seek His face.
An Experience of God (Gen 32:25-30)- Jacob understood the Lord by experience- he saw Him (Gen 32:30:"For I have seen God face to face, and yet my life has been delivered.") A touch from the angel caused Jacob’s thigh to be out of joint. The one touch brought a permanent change. We can also see Jacob engage in a beautiful conversation with the God that made a marked difference in Jacobs’s life. Coming to our lives, have our inner eyes been opened to “see” God or received His touch in our lives? Do we talk to Him daily in prayer?- we can approach the throne of grace boldly to talk to our Father (Heb.4:16). Ps.34:8: “Taste and sees that the LORD is good; blessed is the one who takes refuge in him.” As we humbly give ourselves to Him, we will experience Him in our daily lives.
A Name Change (Gen 32:28): From a person who deceived others, a great transformation came into Jacob’s life— his name changed from Jacob to the “Prince of God.” The changes were visible through a lifetime. Through Jesus Christ we also have received the name change from ‘sinner’ to “Justified person” from being an enemy to “child of God.”
A Receiving of Blessing (Gen 32:29): Before he received the blessing, Jacob was a wealthy person. But here he received the spiritual blessing and confidence in abundance. “All praise to God, the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly realms because we are united with Christ.” (Eph.1:3).
A Remembrance for a lifetime (Gen 32:31-32)- Jacob’s limp remained with him as a reminder of his encounter, he could no longer move like the old Jacob. A total change, a real transformation was visible in all the areas of his life and reflected in his generations too. 2Cor.5:17 says, “Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; old things have passed away; behold, all things have become new.”
As children of God we have received a great number of treasures through Jesus Christ. It’s not to keep with us; God has assigned us to share this love and joy with others. Our transformation will impact others so that they too become partakers of eternal life. May God strengthen us to do so!
“LORD help me to impact others through the
transformation you made in my life—
I want carry that light to many for Your glory.
In Jesus name. Amen”
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