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  • Writer's pictureJohn Coleman

Wrestling with God

Updated: Jan 21

(This year, I am intentionally working my way systematically (again) through Holy Scripture. As a part of that I am writing short rough notes as I journey through Scripture. These are random, fluid thoughts. These are not formal essays or written sermons. There are no citations and I often convey the thoughts of others that I have read or encountered. These have become a part of my own theology and clearly I stand on the shoulders of others to see more clearly.)

Genesis 32:24–32 (RSVCE): And Jacob was left alone; and a man wrestled with him until the breaking of the day. 25 When the man saw that he did not prevail against Jacob, he touched the hollow of his thigh; and Jacob’s thigh was put out of joint as he wrestled with him. 26 Then he said, “Let me go, for the day is breaking.” But Jacob said, “I will not let you go, unless you bless me.” 27 And he said to him, “What is your name?” And he said, “Jacob.” 28 Then he said, “Your name shall no more be called Jacob, but Israel, for you have striven with God and with men, and have prevailed.” 29 Then Jacob asked him, “Tell me, I pray, your name.” But he said, “Why is it that you ask my name?” And there he blessed him. 30 So Jacob called the name of the place Peniel, saying, “For I have seen God face to face, and yet my life is preserved.” 31 The sun rose upon him as he passed Penuel, limping because of his thigh. 32 Therefore to this day the Israelites do not eat the sinew of the hip which is upon the hollow of the thigh, because he touched the hollow of Jacob’s thigh on the sinew of the hip.

Genesis 35:10–11 (RSVCE): Your name is Jacob; no longer shall your name be called Jacob, but Israel shall be your name.” So his name was called Israel. 11 And God said to him, “I am God Almighty: be fruitful and multiply; a nation and a company of nations shall come from you, and kings shall spring from you.



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