Friday, January 16, 2009

Day 16 Becoming an overcommer

Gen 32:28 Then the man said, "Your name will no longer be Jacob, but Israel,because you have struggled with God and with human beings and have overcome."

Jacob gets a name change
The man Jacob was wrestling with asks his name, and when he is told, "heel grabber/heel sneak" he changes it to Israel, God-Fighter/or he who struggles with God. and overcomes. Some times the name we are given only describes part of our character. Jacob could see himself as having to struggle & strive for every inch to gain the birthright, the blessing, his family and livestock. The Man acknowledges Jacobs struggles and lets him know he is also an over-comer.

Israel now realizes that he has seen God face to face. He buys a piece of land, pitches his tent, builds an altar. Dinah is raped and the slaughter is staged and executed at Shechem. (This tells me that just because we go to church, do the right religious/spiritual stuff that bad things are warded off. We can only know that God sees all in our lives.) God then speaks to Israel again and tells him to build an altar. (Jacob could have thought, I have done that already, so why do I need to build another altar?) Then in ch 35:10 God meets with JAcob and gives him the name change, and with it the promise God had given to Abraham and Isaac his father of seed and land. God could only give the land to Jacob/Israel when he returned to the land.

Why twice? maybe Jacob didn't realize the full impact of the change or indeed what it meant, maybe his more reflective response to his daughters rape shows us the change in Jacob.
How often does God have to remind us that we are overcomers through our Lord Jesus Christ? Probably daily....

John 14
"I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world."
1 John 4 You, dear children, are from God and have overcome them, because the one who is in you is greater than the one who is in the world.
1 John 5:5 Who is it that overcomes the world? Only he who believes that Jesus is the Son of God.
Let us have a great day enjoying the blessing, seed and land that YHWH has given us.

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