Summary: Jabez represents anyone who is going through difficulties in life. Maybe he is humiliated by family, called pain by his mother, and deserted by father. He seems to have no property, no cash and no future. In that desperation, desperate prayer comes in and everything changes.


1 Chronicles 4:9-10: 9 Jabez was More Honorable than his brothers. His mother had named him Jabez, saying, “I Gave Birth To Him In Pain.” 10 Jabez Cried Out to the God of Israel, “Oh, that you would Bless Me and Enlarge My Territory! Let Your Hand Be With Me, and Keep Me From Harm So That I Will Be Free From Pain.” And God granted his request.


Bruce Wilkinson’s book, The Prayer Of Jabez Was An Unexpected Best Seller - a Christian book on the New York Times & USA Today’s Best Sellers List for months. He turned this obscure short passage into a phenomenon. It gave rise to the Jabez Prayer Book, The Prayer of Jabez for Women, The Prayer of Jabez for Teens, The Prayer of Jabez for Kids, The Prayer of Jabez Devotional, The Prayer of Jabez Journal, not to mention Leather Edition, Jabez music, T-shirts, hats, posters, coffee mugs, calendars, mouse-pad for computer. Many say this book caters to the health & wealth gospel. Jabez may have been praying for personal things, yet, there was something more in that prayer which led God to answer yes. The Prayer of Jabez is about the sovereign, holy, wise, faithful, & gracious God who answered Jabez’ prayer. And the message about God that this text proclaims is good news for every believer, not just Jabez: The Lord God is still in the blessing business!

In The 1st 9 Chapters Of 1 Chronicles, There Is A List Of 500 Names. We don’t remember them. The names make up the family tree of the 12 tribes of Israel. Most are listed without any comments at all, but there are a few that stand out. In 1 Chronicles 1:19, one was named Peleg (which means division – he brought division in Israel). 1 Chronicles 2:3, one was named Er (was very wicked). 1 Chronicles 2:7, another named Achan (who brought disaster). Among those 500 names, nothing stands out. In 1 Chronicles 4, suddenly a face stands out in the crowd. May that camera shine on you, in Jesus’ Name. Four very ambitious prayer points he prayed. Jabez Asked God To Bless Him. Jabez Asked God To Enlarge His Territory. Jabez Asked That God’s Hand Would Continue To Be Upon Him. Jabez Asks God To Keep Him From All Harm.


1. Jabez Was A Pain To His Mother. His mother named him “pain”. Why would you name a child “pain?” Verse 9 gives us some insight: “I gave birth to him in pain.” Examples: 1 Samuel 4: Philistines attacked Israel. Killed sons of Eli. Take the Ark of God. Eli hears it, falls, breaks his neck & died. Phinehas wife in labor, overcome and gives birth calling child Ichabod – the glory is departed from Israel. Ichabod’s mother died in childbirth. Genesis 35: Rachel son Benoni (son of my pain) as she died – Jacob changed to Benjamin. Jabez’ name indicates that something was troubling his mother. She was discouraged. The only thing she could see in her future was difficulty so she named her baby pain. Only God knows what her pain was. Only God knows your pain. Pains are personal - Sickness. Loneliness. Disappointment. Deception. Failures. They are real and they happen. They can lead to loss of zeal for life. Unforgivingness. Withdrawal from society. But “Pain doesn’t just show up in our lives for no reason. It’s a sign that something needs to change.” “One of the main ways we move from abstract knowledge about God to a personal encounter with him as a living reality is through the furnace of affliction. Romans 8:18 As heirs, if we are to share his glory, we must also share his suffering. Yet what we suffer now is nothing compared to the glory He will reveal to us later. Deut. 22 and 2 Samuel 13 about rape.

2. Was He A Product Of Abuse (Mother Raped Or Assaulted)? The question is not far-fetch. Child Sexual Abuse Statistics (2015): 1 in 4 girls and 1 in 6 boys will be sexually abused before they turn 18. Over 58,000 children were sexually abused last year. 34% of people who sexually abuse a child are family members. 12.3% of girls were age 10 or younger at the time of their first rape / victimization. 27.8% of boys were age 10 or younger at the time of their first rape / victimization. 96% of people who sexually abuse children are male, and 76.8% of people who sexually abuse children are adults. 325,000 children are at risk of becoming victims of commercial child sexual exploitation each year. The average age at which girls first become victims of prostitution is 12 to 14 years old, and the average age for boys is 11 to 13 years old. Judges 11: We see traces of what Jabez is going through in Jephthah. He was the son of an illegitimate relationship. John 8: Woman caught in adultery to be stoned. Where is the man? Look, most of us carry stuff in our heads that only God can help us.

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Paula Valerie-Campbell

commented on Mar 12, 2020

God bless you for that powerful message. You have ministered to me.

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