GOD WHO TRANSFORMS!
Thursday, 21 November 2019
Genesis 33 : 1-20
There he [Jacob] erected an altar and called it El-Elohe-Israel. -Genesis 33:20
This chapter brings an end to the age-long enmity between the sons of Isaac. As we read this chapter, we can see the hand of God at work. So Jacob erects an altar to worship this God who powerfully sustained him in all his wanderings and brought him safely back to his father's land and even made his brother to reconcile with him. All through his stay in his father- in law Laban's house, he would have planned a hundred schemes about how he can be safe from his own brother in his journey back. But see how God has brought the matter to an end when Jacob surrendered his life to God!
Both the parties (Jacob and Esau) reconciled and made peace with each other. Hence, Jacob after pitching his tent in the land of Canaan calls upon his God by building an altar. This altar reminds us about the covenant keeping, faithful God. This altar also reminds us about a gracious God, who graciously blessed Jacob and brought him safely. And Jacob names this altar as El-Elohe Israel (this name is translated as God, God of Israel). The very same God who kept his covenant with Jacob has now changed Jacob to become Israel, after the encounter he had in the previous chapter (Genesis 32). His gracious power of transformation has changed a deceiver like Jacob and made him into a prince. Hence forth in all his life, he was a transformed person.
This is our God! He is the all -powerful God, who can change us and make us into renewed personalities. Let us humbly submit ourselves into His hand. He will work in us by His gracious power and change us, so that we can build our altar of praise and sacrifices to God Almighty. His omnipotent power is the real source of transformation in us. This power is available for anyone who unconditionally surrenders himself into the hands of this Mighty God. See the example of Apostle Paul, who was a blasphemer, a persecutor of the church—by the power of transformation he was changed into a vessel to carry the glory of God to the Gentiles.
Are you stubbornly resisting God in your life? Or have you been praying for a hard heart to turn to God? Today as we read through the story of Jacob of old, be reminded of the transforming power of God that can change one around! As Jacob built an altar for His God who was all- powerful to change his life and bring him safely, let us also submit our lives into the hand of this very same God to be changed and transformed into His likeness!
John Newton on his tombstone had these famous words written: "John Newton Clerk, once an infidel and libertine a servant of slaves in Africa, was, by the rich mercy of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, Restored, Pardoned and appointed to preach the Gospel which he had long labored to destroy."
Can we today surrender our lives to the One who changes us to change others? Like the altar Jacob built in the land of Canaan to commemorate the All-Powerful God who transformed him, let us also build our altars. HE is able to change our stubborn nature and make us like His Son!
Dear God, here I am submitting my life into Thy powerful hands
that can change me and use me purposefully.
Listen- ‘I surrender all’
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