Summary: To let the people know that you need to want to the promises of God bad enough, that you will be broken down just to be blessed.
We find that Jacob has a problem he is between a rock and hard place. Because his uncle Laban is behind him and his brother whom he tricked is about to approach him. And he does not know what to do. You see he is on his way to meet Esau for the first time in some twenty years after he stole Esau’s birthright. Going to meet Esau and not knowing what to expect from him puts Jacob in a tight spot. I wander if anybody here has ever been in a tight spot and did not know how you were going to come out. But I declare if you want to be set free bad enough and if you pray hard enough God will here your prayer and come see about you. That’s why David says "I sougt the Lord, and delievered me from my fears." But you have gotto ask yourself How Bad Do I Want It.
In this text we find that Jacob is mysteriously locked into a wrestling match with this man. Now understand that the redactive criticism is who is this man Jacob wrestles with. Some say it was an angel, but theology most strongly defends that it was Jesus in the preincarnate state. So for the sake of argument we will say he wrestled with an angelic being. Because in fact Jesus has angelic powers, because he comes from God. And theology indicates that an angel is a messenger from God, and since Jesus came barring a message from God we will call him an angel. So Jacob wrestles with this angelic being and the thing that most people don’t know is that Jacob does not wrestle the entire time, he wrestles up until a certain point. Because he realizes that he cannot win against God, and until we as people realize that we cannot win a fight against God we will never become blessed.
The text says that Jacob name in the Hebrew means (heel catcher, deciever, or supplanter) and all these names mean negative things. And God cannot use you with all this attached to you. So sometimes God has to strip all that sin from you in order to be able to use you. And there are peole who have been some bad names and obtained some negative names in the world, but forget that God seeks to use and he can not. It is then that God’s will has to be done, and he has to use you. And so he causes Jacob to have to come into a place of deliverance so that he could make him for the work of the Lord. And some of you right now are in a position that God is getting ready to make you useable. The question is how bad do want to be used by God.
The text then says that Jacob comes into contact with God one way, but leaves another way. That suggests that you cannot come into the presence of God and never be changed. Many people lie and say that they have been in God’s presence, but you don’t see any change in them. But I stand to tell you that when you see God your hole outlook changes. The old people say the places I used to go I don’t go no more. Something on the inside of you changes and you just can’t act the same.
Then the text says that Jacob comes to God healthy and whole, but leaves from God with a limp. And this limp siginifies not anything negative, but it symbolizes that God has cleaned you up. And some of us needs a limp to remind us who God is and how he set us free from sin. That’s why Paul says that these thorns in my flesh keep on hendering me. But they have been put to make you remember that God did it.