We find with Jacob’s story his challenge of handling his own value fluctuations —secondly, his forming of deep personal convictions. We find this even more than with the stories of Abraham and Isaac. Another way of saying it is; he was made to stand, in the midst of circumstances and relationships, while these pressed against his inward citadel, gradually forcing a determined-fight mentality in Jacob. He fought the war between belief and unbelief.
For healing, Jacob gives us, uncensored, stark reality in living color. We have looked at the fallen nature of man worked in, now we look at the “reversing” plan of God; and it too, chiseled into a soul.
Jacob’s adverse challenges arose from a flight of fear. Brother Esau had threatened to kill him, leading to a miserable tenure under uncle Laban. So, he is made to deal with his own insecurity and the deceit of Laban as well. He is schooled in the pains of working hard to raise his family.
Two decades later Jacob is sensing the need to escape Laban’s vexing toil. He decides it better to face his dreaded brother than continue to hide. Whereas Abraham taught us by walking, and Isaac by staying, Jacob instructs us by readying for fighting.
As the Bible teaches, “perfect love casts out all fear.” Jacob shows us: to get the perfect love-picture we often must face the fear.
Faith takes us into the arena of downright life as it exists, and challenges us to win at this level. God wants us to win the battle of cope and strategy in a harsh society. Shame is, “real world” scares the hey out of most of us, and not many keep their budding health.
A close and utter dependence on God, secrets the winning. God’s love is epitomized in the revelation of 1 John 4:19, “as He is, so are you, in this world”. What mean? “Can two walk together except they be agreed?” Amos3:3
It is not just will, dignity, and rest that Noah’s life showed us to be the goal. Now we have the merging of a man’s innards with God’s. A merging of God’s rest with mine, His dignity with mine, and His will with mine seals my deal. O this is what God is after! His desire is to be so one with us, and we with Him, that we reveal Him and He fills us. So, facing fears becomes the end result of the revealing, by oneness, of an already-victorious God.
Jacob is getting it! More still coming, but Jake could not deny God’s handling, (through Jacob’s decision), the ever-imposing terror-bringer, Esau. Jacob needed for God to face the brother with him, and for Jake to unite with God in the facing. Upward and onward we go with God. New promised lands await and Jacob got a God-premising victory to push him yet further.
When we take God at His word, He rewards us with more equipment. Jacob soared upward, but more obstacles awaited him. These centered again on real life. This time, disappointment itself stood the impassable enemy. Fears must be met head-on and so also disappointments.
Jacob’s life brought frustration, disenchantment, and regret. Frustration of continual letdowns, disenchantment of negative events and regret with the loss of Joseph, all set in. With Rachael dying, boys mischief-making, and Joseph disappearing, was there a promised land?
Jacob fails and falls utterly with the swamping. He wins at the first but now looses the too-big battle and so is worn to smithereens. Life eats a person alive and two things are real. First, no one will make it in life without God’s help. Second, with God in us we still may go down. Jacob died the psychological death years before the physical manifestation.
But now the ultimate in love and surprise, God resurrects his own. Dead, Jacob comes alive and God shows up with his promised land on earth —food and running water included. Healing, God heals and keeping, God keeps. If we fall, if we fall, we will not be utterly cast down, for the Lord upholds us with HIS HANDS! Psalm 37:23-24
A never fearing God cast the terror out earlier. Now, a never frustrated, disillusioned, or regretting God is Jacob’s option and so the battle. When the foes line up to oppose, their presence evokes the natural response to their arduous situations. Difficult to shake, a dying is necessary. We must enter the already victorious zone of God and so evade the invasion of depression.
The story of Jacob looms large as a story of God’s integrity being established as the next point in healing. God cannot tell a lie in Numbers 23:12. God cannot act in opposition to His own nature. Man’s unbelief cannot nullify God’s faith in Romans 3:3 and when we believe not, yet He abideth faithful, because He cannot deny Himself in 2 Timothy 2:13.
In order to magnify this aspect of God and its healing virtue, we need a person who looses faith. Jacob volunteers as our man. He lost it big time, and who could blame him? Nevertheless, even after several years in utter unbelief, God does not forsake Jacob but turns a curse into a blessing.
The ultimate hero of this book, Jacob got that honor by going through death while still alive to tell. We may loose all hope, really, and be broken, literally, but find God so sweet after all. We mentioned a lot that healing is all about grace. Grace, unmerited love and favor, became the sphere gained by Jacob, as he got the royal treatment in Joseph’s Goshen. A true promised land emerges and this defines it all.