Jacob wrestlingIllustration:  “Jacob Wrestling with the Angel” by Alexandre-Louis Leloir, 1865. Oil on canvas.

“And God said to him, “I am God Almighty: be fruitful and multiply. A nation and a company of nations shall come from you, and kings shall come from your own body” (Genesis 35:11).

Jacob is Isaac’s son and the third of the great patriarchs (Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob). God gives Jacob a new name: “Israel,” which means “he struggles with God.” This is the name of the nation that comes from his descendants, and is an apt name for these people who stubbornly hold onto their sinful ways while God lovingly holds onto them as His children.

God reminds Israel of His promise to build a great nation through his descendants. In fact, a whole community of nations will come from the family of Israel, and he will be the father of kings. Here’s what we know about Messiah so far: He will come from the descendants of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob; He will be born of a woman; He will be bruised by but defeat Satan; through His rule, all the nations of the earth will be blessed. Israel will struggle with God, and sometimes refuse to do His will, but through it all, God will stand fast and love His people.

Prayer: Thank You, Jesus, for bringing blessing to all the nations and leading me daily to forgiveness and Your promise of eternal blessing. Amen.

As We Wait: You and I struggle with God just like Jacob and his descendants. But God is patient to bring us back and keep forgiving us through Jesus. Today, remember God’s faithfulness to you.

http://www.BurningBushLCMS.org http://www.ChaivShalom.com


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