Monday, December 17, 2012

Jacob Wrestles with God

Scripture Reference: Genesis 32:22-32

You intended to harm me, but God intended it for good to accomplish what is now being done, the saving of many lives. – Genesis 50:20
A lesson in struggle and blessing.

Cast:MR. JEFF – the larger, stronger storyteller
ABIGAIL – the tenacious albeit smaller student

(While reading the story below, MR. JEFF and ABIGAIL will be arm wrestling to illustrate God and Jacob wrestling.)

During the night Jacob rose and crossed the Jabbok River at the crossing, taking with him his two wives, his two slave girls, and his eleven sons. He sent his family and everything he had across the river. So Jacob was alone, and a man came and wrestled with him until the sun came up. When the man saw he could not defeat Jacob, he struck Jacob's hip and put it out of joint. (MR. JEFF touches ABIGAIL's hip [or shoulder], and her arm drops. But she does not let go!) Then he said to Jacob, "Let me go. The sun is coming up."

But Jacob said, "I will let you go if you will bless me."

The man said to him, "What is your name?"

And he answered, "Jacob."

Then the man said, "Your name will no longer be Jacob. Your name will now be Israel, because you have wrestled with God and with people, and you have won."

Then Jacob asked him, "Please tell me your name."

But the man said, "Why do you ask my name?" Then he blessed Jacob there. (ABIGAIL releases MR. JEFF.)

So Jacob named that place Peniel, saying, "I have seen God face to face, but my life was saved." Then the sun rose as he was leaving that place, and Jacob was limping because of his leg. So even today the people of Israel do not eat the muscle that is on the hip joint of animals, because Jacob was touched there.

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