prayer of Jacob wherein he both expresses himself in need of the Lord
and calls upon the Lord in terms of the covenant confirmed to him.
AIM: That we
might approach unto the Lord in a similar way calling in faith to the
Lord of our salvation with all that is promised in Him.
INTR: We now
fast forward over a period of twenty plus years in which the Lord
establishes the family that was to become the nation of Israel and
provide the ultimate heir in Christ our Lord.
1. It has now been a
long and eventful time since the events of Jacob’s dream at Bethel where
the Lord appeared and made promise to the fugitive Jacob.
2. We will
observe in what is to follow that the mercy of the Lord was essential in
that the character of Jacob was much the same as before though tempered
3. We would keep in mind the gospel element in all
this in that the look was to the coming of the Messiah through one of
these sons of Jacob.
God often works through unlikely tools to accomplish His will and
purpose and so orders even the actions of the unseemly to bring His
redemptive purpose to fruition.
I. The arrival at Mahanaim (vv.
1. Jacob is greeted here by a host of angels prepared, no doubt
for the protection of Jacob. We are reminded of And Elisha prayed, and
said, LORD, I pray thee, open his eyes, that he may see. And the LORD
opened the eyes of the young man; and he saw: and, behold, the mountain
was full of horses and chariots of fire round about Elisha. (2 Kings
2. A lot had happened to Jacob since last coming this way.
1) He served his uncle and wound up with two wives and two
maidservants as the mothers of his children. He was frustrated by the
actions of his uncle.
2) The purpose of God was realized in his
marriage to Leah who was not his choice, but she was the mother of Judah
and the line of Christ.
3) He endured much treachery as His uncle
used him to his own advantage but
4) The Lord overruled and made the
treachery of Laban work to the good of Jacob.
5) We consider the
accumulated wealth of Jacob and how some of it came about in the
division of the livestock between him and Laban.
6) It became
apparent to Laban that the Lord was blessing Jacob and the departure
7) Laban was warned and Jacob was spared.
after the separation from Laban and his deliverance from bondage with
the Lord’s had evident all along the way, there was still the grim
reminder that Esau was out there somewhere, and the threat was fresh in
1) He then learned that Esau was coming to meet him and
here faith wavered.
2) He was afraid and divided the company into two
bands (the meaning of the Mahanaim).
II. The prayer of Jacob (vv.
1. In addressing Him as the God of Abraham and Isaac he used a
term that has plural implications, but then in his own relationship the
word is Jehovah (LORD).
1) He is no doubt reminded of all that he
knew of the promise of the seed
2) But also defers to the personal
word given to him both in the house of Laban and earlier at Bethel.
2. The promise had been made of both temporal protection and provision
and of spiritual identity as well. (There might be a question of the
Jacob’s confidence here or was he simply doing what he could)?
note a true Gospel humility in the assessment of his personal
unworthiness (mercy needed) and helplessness (grace needed).
amazement at starting out with only his staff and now two bands.
It is to be remembered that the survival of his family was essential to
the promise and
6. He was honest in the expression of the fear of his
7. And bares his heart to the Lord who promised – our safest
approach is appeal to the One who is determined to
1) Do us good and
2) To bless us in Christ our Lord
3) It is all in His hands