Christ Triumphant


Valuable Lessons in Jacob's Experience, March 23

And he said, Let me go, for the day breaketh. And he said, I will not let thee go, except thou bless me. Genesis 32:26. CTr 89.1

To tell tempted souls of their guilt in no way inspires them with a determination to do better.... Hold up before them the possibilities that are theirs. Point them to the heights to which they may attain. Help them to take hold upon the mercy of the Lord, to trust in His forgiving power. Jesus is waiting to clasp them by the hand, waiting to give them power to live a noble, virtuous life. CTr 89.2

God often brings people to a crisis to show them their own weakness and to point them to the Source of strength. If they pray and watch unto prayer, fighting bravely, their weak points will become their strong points. Jacob's experience contains many valuable lessons for us. God taught Jacob that in his own strength he could never gain the victory, that he must wrestle with God for strength from above. CTr 89.3

All night Jacob wrestled with the Angel. Finally the strong wrestler was weakened by a touch on his thigh. He was now disabled and suffering the keenest pain, but he would not loose his hold. All penitent and broken, he clung to the Angel, ... pleading for a blessing. He must have the assurance that his sin was pardoned. His determination grew stronger, his faith more earnest and persevering, until the very last. The Angel tried to release Himself; He urged, “Let me go, for the day breaketh,” but Jacob answered, “I will not let thee go, except thou bless me.” CTr 89.4

Had this been a boastful, presumptuous confidence, Jacob would have been instantly destroyed; but his was the assurance of one who confesses his own unworthiness, yet trusts to the faithfulness of a covenant-keeping God.... Through humiliation, repentance, and self-surrender this sinful, erring mortal prevailed with the Majesty of heaven. He had fastened his trembling grasp on the promises of God, and the heart of infinite love could not turn away the sinner's plea. CTr 89.5

As an evidence that Jacob had been forgiven, his name was changed from one that was a reminder of his sin to one that commemorated his victory. “Thy name,” said the Angel, “shall be called no more Jacob, but Israel: for as a prince hast thou power with God and with men, and hast prevailed.” CTr 89.6

Shall we obtain strength from God, and win victory after victory, or shall we try in our own strength, and at last fall back defeated, worn out by vain efforts? Let us, by unreserved surrender to God, obtain the power that everyone must have who conquers in the battle against evil.—Manuscript 2, 1903. CTr 89.7