Genesis 32:1-32

Wrestling with God


When we ponder the Christian life we understand that it’s not always roses and peaches. Christians are given a new birth, born into the family of God. All joy fills our hearts, but it isn’t long before we experience opposition from those who belong to the family of the world. We become contenders like boxing in a ring with our opponent.

Behind the scenes of this contention are schemes of the devil that instigate people who are hostile towards the gospel. Eph. 6:12

Preliminary thoughts:

  1. Jacob is now on the path of obedience, his faith is tested by fire – I Peter 1:6-7

  2. Jacob went on his way when he met the angels of God. Mahamaim – means “two camps”

  1. The Wisdom of Jacob v.1-23

  1. Messengers

  1. Jacob sends out men who would spy out his angry brother Esau – Gal. 6:10

  2. Jacob hopes to appease Esau with many gifts – cf. Gen. 27:39-41; Isa. 40:29

  3. Jacob’s messengers return with a warning that Esau is coming with a small army.

  4. Jacob divides his people and flocks into two companies – Eccl. 4:9,12

  5. Jacob went to prayer – v.9-12

  1. Observe the content of Jacob’s prayer:

  1. Prevailing prayer – Eph. 1:1,2; Phil. 4:19

  2. Prayer of humility – v.10

  3. Prayer for the glory of God – v.12 cf. John 17:5,22,24

  1. The Wrestling Match of Jacob – v.24-32

  1. A Theophany Manifestation – Gen. 18:1-3; John 14:8

  1. Jacob wrestled with the Man, the Lord Jesus until day break – v.24

Rom. 9:19-20; II Cor. 12:9-10

  1. Jacob’s goal is to be blessed – v.26; II Pet. 3:9

  2. Jacob is stalling!

  3. Jacob’s name will be changed from “heel holder” to “contender”; II Tim. 3:10; II Pet. 1:6

  1. We often wrestle with God as we follow Him in fellowship and in our prayer life.

  2. There are consequences for following the Lord; sometimes we call this a thorn in the flesh in order to keep us humble. Gal. 2:20

Pastor Nick Iamaio

Reformed Presbyterian Church, 207 South First Street, Fulton, NY 13069

315-3431976, Web Site: