Tag: Jacob

WHAT IS YOUR NAME? (#IAMGOD PT. 18)

And he said unto him, What is thy name? And he said, Jacob. And he said, Thy name shall be called no more Jacob, but Israel: for as a prince hast thou power with God and with men, and hast prevailed. (Gen 32:27-28 KJV) A nation stands tall today, respected and honoured by many nations, as well as hated by others. Her people have existed through the years of human history and had faced all manners of oppositions, warfare, pogroms and the like. She has had kings great and small, rulers good and bad, and has been the center of attention as concerning the movement of God on the earth. She was the culmination of God’s promise to the man Abraham and his son Isaac. Many civilizations that existed with her in millenniums past are no more (Babylon, Tyre, Philistine, etc.); some have also lost their glory (Greece, Rome, etc.). But she continues to find relevance and honour in the scheme of things on the earth. She is a strong nation, and Israel is her name. The parents of Jacob gave birth to him, and unlike what transpired with respect to his father, they did not seek God’s face for the Child’s name. they simply followed the reality on ground and named him JACOB – “He grasps the heels”, in other words, “he deceives”. The Almighty heard the name that was given him and kept quiet. He needed to deal with the ‘man’ Jacob first before He gives him a name. Actually, in the volume of the books, a name had already been given him, but the unveiling of that name was going to take years before it manifested. That night as he wrestled with the ‘man’, the struggle got so intense and Jacob refused to give up the fight….

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THE PENIEL ENCOUNTER (#IAMGOD PT. 17)

After he had sent them across, he also sent across all that he owned, but he stayed behind, alone. Then a man came and wrestled with him until just before daybreak. Genesis 32:23 – 24 GNB It’s been a while since I last wrote. It’s been quite an interesting time following the scheme of things going on in my own life. And so also was it for our father Jacob. He was still lost in his thoughts wondering what he would do about the situation he now faced. He had spent 20 years of his life acquiring things. In the mean time, he had acquired two wives, two concubines, hosts of servants, sheep and cattle. He had come to Laban’s house empty handed, but he left that house full of acquisitions from 20 years of service. Now, he was facing a new threat – his brother Esau. He had plotted and planned on how to appease him; but all his plans seemed incapable of placating an angry Esau. He had spent 20 years acquiring people and properties, but it dawned on him that none of these could help him in the situation he was currently facing. As far as his problems were concerned, he was perfectly helpless. Has it not happened to many even in our present day? We always have cause to believe that if we had this or that, then life would be easier for us. Sometimes we wish that we would get a higher certificate. Sometimes we wish we would go abroad. Sometimes we wish we know the right people in important places. We believe that all these could have helped us achieve our purpose in life. But this is not always true, it is only part of the philosophies that the enemy employs to place us…

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THE HAUNTING SHADOWS (#IAMGOD PT. 16)

The messengers returned to Jacob, saying, “We came to your brother Esau, and furthermore he is coming to meet you, and four hundred men are with him.” Then Jacob was greatly afraid and distressed; and he divided the people who were with him, and the flocks and the herds and the camels, into two companies; for he said, “If Esau comes to the one company and attacks it, then the company which is left will escape.” Genesis 32: 6 – 8 NASB The sins of one’s youth…. Sometimes the consequences do not just stop with our youthful years, but they follow us even into adulthood. They become for most of us “the haunting shadows.” All around us, we tend to see one thing or the other that reminds us of the manner of men we were while young, and the notable mistakes we had made. This was the dilemma of our Father, Jacob. When he was on his way back, he remembered that he had an unsettled business which he had left behind 20 years ago. So, he sent a ambassage to his brother Esau to let him know that he is coming back home. Esau, at this time was a wealthy man. He had lands and properties, and unlike his father, he even had a city which he could call his own…. The city of Edom or Mountain Seir. When you look at the amount of money and wealth Esau had, you will wonder what exactly Jacob stole from him. If the blessing of Isaac was merely about physical wealth and prosperity, Esau had them too… So, what’s the difference? The difference is simply in the fact that Jacob obtained what Esau did not obtain…. THE BLESSING OF THE LORD.The Blessing of the Lord is a substance. It can…

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JACOB, LABAN AND THE FEAR OF ISAAC (#IAMGOD PT. 15)

There I was: by day the heat consumed me, and the cold by night, and my sleep fled from my eyes. These twenty years I have been in your house. I served you fourteen years for your two daughters, and six years for your flock, and you have changed my wages ten times. If the God of my father, the God of Abraham and the Fear of Isaac, had not been on my side, surely now you would have sent me away empty-handed. God saw my affliction and the labor of my hands and rebuked you last night.” (Gen 31:40-42 ESV) It was 3 days after Jacob had fled, that Laban was informed that his ‘in-law’ Jacob was nowhere to be found! This triggered the heart of Laban, and he gathered together his kinsmen, and pursued after Jacob. It took him 7 days of pursuit before he got closer to Jacob and his family. By the 7th day, he was already close to Jacob by the hill of Gilead; then something happened. We do not know what Laban had planned to do to Jacob, but the God of Bethel stopped him. That night, in a dream, the Almighty God appeared to Laban and warned him not to say ‘anything’ to Jacob, either good or bad. Essentially, he was warning Laban that Jacob must be allowed to continue the journey he had begun. Laban must not use threats to try to make him to turn back, neither must he use promises. He must just leave Jacob alone to continue his journey. Most times when we take decisions to embark on a journey with God, and more especially if that decision involves breaking away from certain relationships, we usually receive several kinds of oppositions from those affected by the break in relationship….

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SUMMONS FROM THE GOD OF BETHEL (#IAMGOD PT. 14)

And he heard the words of Laban’s sons, saying, Jacob hath taken away all that was our father’s; and of that which was our father’s hath he gotten all this glory. And Jacob beheld the countenance of Laban, and, behold, it was not toward him as before. And the LORD said unto Jacob, Return unto the land of thy fathers, and to thy kindred; and I will be with thee. (Gen 31:1-3 KJV) The last 5-6 years of serving Laban for a wage was not funny for Jacob. Though Laban’s flocks increased and prospered, but Jacob’s flocks also increased and multiplied. The children of Laban were not happy about this. They began to complain against Jacob saying that he had taken away all their father’s possessions and enriched himself with them. This was an unfair accusation, seeing that Jacob served 14 years for Leah and Rachel, and only served 6 years for a wage; and in these 6 years, his wages were changed by the cunning Laban 10 times. That Jacob prospered was because God was with him; otherwise, it would have been difficult for Jacob to prosper. He was a lesson in the mercy of God; because he demonstrated the fact that even in the atmosphere of jealousy and oppression, a believer in Christ Jesus can still prosper through the mercy of God. Had it not been recorded in scriptures that the just shall live by their faith. Thus, through faith in Christ Jesus, we can succeed even in the hard place. The circumstances of our residence and labours are not the limiting factors to our lives, but how well we have tapped into the grace and wisdom of the Almighty God (I recommend that you read this article SUCCEDING IN THE HARD PLACE). However, note that despite the…

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“I WANT TO GO HOME” (#IAMGOD PT. 13)

And it came to pass, when Rachel had born Joseph, that Jacob said unto Laban, Send me away, that I may go unto mine own place, and to my country. Give me my wives and my children, for whom I have served thee, and let me go: for thou knowest my service which I have done thee. And Laban said unto him, I pray thee, if I have found favour in thine eyes, tarry: for I have learned by experience that the LORD hath blessed me for thy sake. And he said, Appoint me thy wages, and I will give it. (Gen 30:25-28 KJV) After having served his full 14 years for Laban, and having begotten sons and daughters, Jacob became restless with his stay with Laban, and longed to go home. The reason for this was not far-fetched. Jacob knew he had a home to go to, and longed to return back to the loving face of his mother and father which he had not seen for about 14-15 years now. However, that was not all there was. One other issue that Jacob had, was the way Laban did business with him. Laban was a shrewd business man. He knew how to ‘milk’ virtue out of people. He knew how to get the best out of people without giving them something back. For 14 years, Jacob led his sheep and flock quite well, and it did not even cross his mind to do something for Jacob to help him settle down as a family man. Yes, we may say it was Jacob’s fault; after all, he was the one that requested to serve for 14 years for his two wives. However, if we recognize the way God judges us and the way He expects us to live as Christians,…

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THE SEEDS OF JACOB (#IAMGOD PT. 12)

Then God remembered Rachel; he listened to her and enabled her to conceive. She became pregnant and gave birth to a son and said, “God has taken away my disgrace.” She named him Joseph, and said, “May the Lord add to me another son.” Genesis 30:22‭-‬24 NIV After his double marriage whereby he became a husband to two sisters from the same father, Jacob began to have sons born to him. The first of his wives to begin to giving birth was Leah. Since the Lord saw that she was hated, and was not as appreciated by her husband as Rachel was, the Lord opened Leah’s womb, and she began to conceive and give birth.The name of her first child was Reuben, who was followed closely by Simeon, and then Levi and then Judah. It was recorded that after giving birth to Judah, Leah seized giving birth for the mean time. But she exulted in the fact that she had given to her husband four sons, and so hoped that her husband will love her. This is one challenge that arose from this polygamous marriage. Here is a woman hoping that somehow she has now earned her husband’s love and affection. But this was not God’s order for marriage. The Love of the husband for his wife was not supposed to depend on performance (be it in bed or in giving birth to children or any other thing)… It was supposed to be a microcosm (a perfect replica) of the love of Christ which was without condition. The scriptures said that while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us. We pray for God’s mercies upon those marriages wherein the wife is not certain of the husband’s love; where the wife has to labour hard, do one thing or the…

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MARRIAGE MATTERS PT. 2 (#IAMGOD PT. 11)

So Jacob served seven years for Rachel and they seemed to him but a few days because of his love for her. Then Jacob said to Laban, “Give me my wife, for my time is completed, that I may go in to her.” Laban gathered all the men of the place and made a feast. Now in the evening he took his daughter Leah, and brought her to him; and Jacob went in to her. Genesis 29:20‭-‬23 NASB If I were to label this particular article differently, I would title it NEITHER POLYGAMY NOR DIVORCE. You will see why shortly. Today, I’ll look into something about the way our father Jacob married that serves a lesson for us as we navigate our own Journey. I do not write as someone who has arrived, but as a fellow brother in the journey, who is also learning, sometimes by the hard road of stupid choices and mistakes. May the Lord help us to navigate victoriously in our marriage journeys and so fulfill God’s will for our lives, and even for our marriages. Amen. So, here are the few things we must note concerning marriage: A HIGHER PURPOSE FOR MARRIAGE: It is true that marriage is the divinely ordained route for the legitimate satisfaction of sexual desires, but where the only purpose for a marriage union is the satisfaction of sexual desires, then such a union is commencing on shaky grounds. There is no records whatsoever that Jacob saw any higher purpose for his marriage other than the satisfaction of his sexual desires. He had longed for Rachael and looked forward to marriage as a means of satisfying that longing. He just couldn’t wait for the 7 years to be completed. After the 7 years was completed, Papa Jacob walked up to his…

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MARRIAGE MATTERS PT. 1 (#IAMGOD PT. 10)

Now Jacob loved Rachel, so he said, “I will serve you seven years for your younger daughter Rachel.” Laban said, “It is better that I give her to you than to give her to another man; stay with me.” So Jacob served seven years for Rachel and they seemed to him but a few days because of his love for her. Genesis 29:18‭-‬20 NASB When Isaac’s time to marry had come, his father Abraham made the move, got him a wife, and brought it to him to marry. Isaac too, accepted the father’s choice of a wife, and lived happily with her in love and unity. For Jacob, however, it was different. Instead of Isaac helping him to get a wife, he sent him out to get a wife for himself. That was the story behind the entrance of the first polygamist amongst God’s covenanted persons: Abraham, Isaac and Jacob. After the Bethel encounter, there were no records, whatsoever, that Jacob walked in the consciousness of the God of Bethel. Rather, he continued to live his life normally, and to make his normal choices. When a man encounters God in a season, it is important to realize that every meeting with God is supposed to set him in a place of authority and relevance in your life. It is not enough to say that a religious meeting somewhere ‘blessed’ your life, or touched you. Rather, did you see yourself submitting to the claims of God over your life? After that meeting, did you rise up to become a man or woman walking in the consciousness of the Divine One? Jacob was led all the same, because God was showing him mercy. He led him to a well, where shepherds gathered to fetch water. Rachael, the daughter of Laban, and Jacob’s…

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I WILL NOT LEAVE YOU (#IAMGOD PT. 9)

And there was the LORD standing beside him. “I am the LORD , the God of Abraham and Isaac,” he said. “I will give to you and to your descendants this land on which you are lying. They will be as numerous as the specks of dust on the earth. They will extend their territory in all directions, and through you and your descendants I will bless all the nations. Remember, I will be with you and protect you wherever you go, and I will bring you back to this land. I will not leave you until I have done all that I have promised you.” Genesis 28 vs. 13 – 15 GNB It is very easy to say…. I will not leave you. I will not forsake you. We say it in some ways when we take our marriage oaths. We say it to friends and loved ones at the heights of emotions. We even say it to God as we are praying and worshipping. We use words like ‘forever’, ’till the end of my life’, ‘as long as I am living’, etc. All these words are wonderful; but then since it is coming from man (man who can disappoint and fail), we have reasons to be afraid when it is said. But this really gets my attention…. God Almighty…. God the magnificent…. Jehovah the Lord of Hosts, turns to a mere mortal and says, “I will not leave you, until….” Wow! This is quite huge for me. It almost can move a man to tears. After Jacob had been blessed by his father Isaac, he moved out in order to escape the wrath of his brother Esau, and started his journey to his mother Rebekah’s place. Since he was moving on foot, he got to a point and…

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