Do you long to be blessed by God?
This is a really great moment for Jacob. The chapter starts with him building an altar to the Lord. If you remember reading chapter 28 a few days ago, you recall that he put up a pillar there in Bethel. Time had passed, and now something more permanent would be installed. Why is this a great moment for Jacob? This commentary helped tie it together for me:
Jacob had only set up a pillar at Bethel when God appeared to him (28:18). By returning to Bethel and building an altar there, Jacob acknowledges that God has been faithful to him (see 28:20–22). (ESV Study Bible)
The time of worship Jacob and his family and friends had must have been special. God delivers on His promises. He takes care of His children. Jacob knew this. It was cause for celebration! But it gets better. Jacob was blessed by God, and he received his new name: Israel. Do you think that proved to be an important name? I think we still hear it every day, whether on the news, in the Bible, in church, etc.
Jacob wasn’t perfect. We know that for sure. In fact, his name meant supplanter, or holder of the heel. He was deceptive at times. He was disobedient on many occasions. Why would God bless him? It wasn’t because he deserved it. It was grace through repentance. It was because of his faith and trust in the Lord. Because he embraced God’s plan.
So… do you long to be blessed by God?
If you believe in Jesus, you are already blessed beyond measure. And the Lord might even add to that at times while you’re on this planet. It’s all grace, even when He blesses our obedience. If you want to be like Jacob, you’re in good company. Strive to worship your King. When you make mistakes, repent and pursue His plan.
What stuck out to you in this passage? What did God teach you today? How are you going to apply His Word to your life?
By: Todd Thomas