And Rachel said, With great wrestlings have I wrestled with my sister, and I have prevailed: and she called his name Naphtali. ~Genesis 30:8
Wrestling is one of the oldest contact sports. Two opponents grapple each other to determine which has the finesse, strength, and technique to make the other lose by points or submission. Wrestling requires a lot of endurance and adaptability. No wrestling match is ever light. They are always intense. We see some valuable spiritual lessons in wrestling.
We see the problems.
Rachel described her personal struggles as great wrestling. We can find ourselves stressed and struggling with people, finances, health, family, and pressures. Sometimes, these pressures can put us on our back, and we feel like we are about to be pinned. Like Rachel, we can prevail over the problems we grapple with. We might feel pressed, but we are not pinned. We might be perplexed, but not without hope. We might be persecuted, but not abandoned. We might be knocked down, but not knocked out. Determine that “with great wrestlings have I wrestled... and I have prevailed.”
We see the pride.
“And when he saw that he prevailed not against him, he touched the hollow of his thigh; and the hollow of Jacob's thigh was out of joint, as he wrestled with him.” God had to bring Jacob to the place where he was alone. The Lord wrestled with Jacob all night. Eventually, the Lord touched the hollow of Jacob’s thigh to disable him. Jacob was a proud man who tried to do things in his own power. God wrestled with him and brought him into submission. Jacob went from holding on to try to win to holding on because he needed help. God must touch what is strong about us in order to bring us to the realization that we need the Lord’s help in everything.
We see the principalities.
“For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places.” We grapple daily with the spiritual enemies of darkness. They are invisible hierarchies of evil that seek to overthrow and defeat us. We must dress in our spiritual armor in order to meet them. We overcome them by the blood of the Lamb and by the word of our testimony. We must call on the God of peace to bruise Satan under our feet.
We see the prayers.
Epaphras labored fervently in his prayers for his church. Laboring fervently literally means he wrestled in his prayers. Fervent praying is wrestling with God for the desired outcome. It is earnest praying that accomplishes God’s will on earth and sees answered prayer. It is praying in the Holy Ghost. It is agonizing for the souls of men. It is persistent praying. It is effectual, fervent praying of a righteous man. It is praying through, even when it demands that we must pray through an entire evening. Jesus agonized in His praying in the Garden of Gethsemane. In praying, we must wrestle with great wrestling in order to prevail. Do not allow yourself to fall into the trap of weak, anemic, or heartless praying.
Living for God and being victorious requires intense effort. Be ready to wrestle and to prevail.
Have an earnest God Morning!
Bible Reading Schedule: Job 32-34