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Summary: Ok, Ok, you’re probably wondering what the title of this sermon is all about. Well, the letters “WWF” don’t stand for the World Wrestling Federation. They stand for Wrestling With the Father. And today’s message is about a man who did just t

Ok, Ok, you’re probably wondering what the title of this sermon is all about. Well, the

letters “WWF” don’t stand for the World Wrestling Federation. They stand for Wrestling

With the Father.

And today’s message is about a man who did just that. Jacob wrestled with the Lord. And

although he didn’t exactly win the match, he won a whole lot more. Let’s read about it.

WWF

Genesis 32:22-32

Have you ever been in a wrestling match? Most of the guys here today have probably

wrestled before, at least for fun. It’s kind of a guy thing to do. I used to wrestle once and

awhile with my dad, until finally I got too big for him.

At camp this summer, I wrestled with some of our boys during swim time (remember

Jophet?) Just the other day, my girls and I were in a swimming pool and I wrestled with them.

And you know something? I think I’m getting old. I used to throw the kids around so easily, but

now I have to work at it! And now, when I’m finished these wrestling matches, I’m wiped out!

But can you imagine what it would be like to be in a wrestling match with God? Talk about

being worn out!

Yet, that’s exactly what Jacob did.

This is a strange and inticing passage of Scripture. As one Bible commentator said, “This

passage raises more questions than answers.” Yet there are some basic truths about Jacob’s

experience that I believe are worth while learning.

So let’s examine some of these truths about Jacob’s wrestling match with God.

I IT WAS A NECESSARY EXPERIENCE

A Did you notice that Jacob did not initiate this wrestling match?

1. The man approached him.

2. By all indications, the Lord was the one who started it! He provoked the struggle!

B Now, the question begs to be asked, “Why did the Lord want to wrestle with Jacob?”

1. Well, I don’t know if we can completely answer that question, but we do know this. IT

WAS SOMETHING THAT GOD WANTED TO DO!

2. We should know that God wants to be actively engaged in our lives.

C This wrestling match was not only something that God wanted, but it was something that

Jacob needed. (EXPLAIN)

1. It was the night before Jacob’s reunion with his brother Esau.

2. The last time Jacob saw Esau was shortly after he had tricked him out of his

birthright. The last words he heard from Esau were “I’m going to kill you.”

3. So Jacob was going back to “face the music” after years of self imposed exile. He was

scared. He didn’t know what his brother would do.

4. But more than that, I believe Jacob really needed to know that he could be

legitimately blessed.

a. He had been such a “schemer”. His whole life was marked by getting into trouble

and then running away.

b. I think Jacob was tired of running. THIS WAS AN EMOTIONAL TIME FOR HIM!

D Although we may not enjoy such times, we too have our wrestling matches with God. And

we NEED these times.

1. Sometimes we wrestle with God over problems we don’t understand.

2. Sometimes we wrestle with God over His will for our lives.

3. Sometimes we wrestle with God because of questions that haunt us.

4. Sometimes we wrestle with God (like Jacob) because of a deep desire for blessing.

E You see, God wants us to persist, to engage with him, to wrestle Him for blessings!

1. Ie Wednesday study on Jabez’ Prayer.

2. Jesus talked about the power of persisting with God in a parable.

(Retell the story of the Unjust Judge)

3. Jesus said in Matthew 7: "Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock

and the door will be opened to you.” (Lit. Keep asking, keep seeking, keep knocking.)

F Is there something you need from God? Then wrestle with Him! Strive for His blessing!

Don’t give up until you get your answer!!

II IT WAS A HUMBLING EXPERIENCE

A This blows my mind when I think about it. Jacob actually wrestled with God.

B Ok, Ok... there may be some here who are wondering “How do we know that Jacob

wrestled with God? After all, it says he wrestled with a man.” LET’S LOOK AT THE

INTERNAL EVIDENCE.

1. This “MAN” crippled Jacob with just one touch! v 25

2. Jacob asked the man for a “blessing”. v26

3. This stranger wouldn’t tell Jacob His name, but spoke with authority. v29

4. Jacob obviously understood who this was because in verse 30 he said, “I have seen God

face to face.”

5. Most Bible scholars believe that the stranger was a “theophany” (God in human form).

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