This is a revelatory word originally posted on Monday, December 8, 2014
Shalom, my dear friends and family. Are you in a wrestling season?
Some of you are aware that we, as a congregation, have been through a season of warfare prayer. Suffice it to say, it has been a transformable season. We have experienced massive breakthroughs and sensational battles, sometimes from one day to the next. It is with this that we come to the significance of the Aliyah that we just studied on this last Shabbat.
Jacob is in great anxiety as he is about to face whom he believes to be his arch nemesis, mainly his brother, Esau, whom he stole the blessing of the first born by deceiving their father, Isaac.
He stumbles upon a place in which he seems to be exasperated at the trial that he thinks he’s about to face. In the midst of this, he is confronted by a most peculiar situation. He finds himself in a wrestling match with Elohim himself. I don’t have time to go into why some of your translations say an angel, but with some study you will see that he is wrestling with Elohim.
You know the story, on and on they wrestled throughout the night, trading advantages as wrestlers do on the mat; one grapples and the other struggles to get out, then he makes a move, and submits the other into some type of hold. The other escapes that hold and gains an advantage from another position.
The night goes on like this until finally Elohim said, “The new day is about to dawn. Let me go. (I’m paraphrasing).” The famous words of Jacob are now uttered, “I will not let you go until you bless me!”
Question, do you recognize your season of wrestling? Do you understand that it has been a test the whole time – of your endurance, of your strength, of your tenacity, of your full-doggedness if you will? This test of wills is for our example, to let us know that the Lord watches to see if we will persist, if we will press on, if we will simply not give up until we receive His promise.
Will you be one who gives in this wrestling season that you are in right now?
If you will look closely at the scriptures, you will see that when Elohim leaves him, Jacob recognizes that he has just seen God face to face. In the previous Aliyah, Elohim changes Jacob’s name to Israel. And, in so doing, makes him a candidate for the blessings that he was promised.
Jacob names that place “Peniel” in verse 31 of the Humash, which means “Panin,” (face) of El (God), or literally face to face with God. What is most interesting about the next verse is that it now reads, “Penuel.” In your King James Version it reads in verse 31, "And as he passed over Penuel the sun rose upon him, and he halted upon his thigh."
How profound that they used the word “pass” and “over.” Your “pass over” season is upon you now. You are about to “pass over” from the promise you received from Elohim, face to face, into the receiving of that promise as you “pass over” that wrestling season.
The two Hebrew letters that change in the Torah are these: the Yod is written in the middle of “Peniel” and the Vav is used in the middle of “Penuel.” Why the difference? The Yod, in ancient Hebrew, is a picture of an arm, almost as if it is extended, offering you something, “your promise perhaps?”
Then comes the wrestling, “…after that ye have suffered a while, make you perfect, establish, strengthen, settle you in your promise (1 Peter 5:10).
You must understand that the Vav is very significant in the sense that its meaning is exemplified in that its purpose is to connect heaven and earth through liquid light. It also connects your future and your past. The Vav is a tangible, revelatory entity, in that its ancient pictograph is a tent peg or a stake. All that you have been promised in your future and all that you have wrestled with in your past shall be staked together in that you will be able to receive your future because of your past.
Stay the course, my brothers and sisters. Do whatever it takes to make it in life as you gain advantages, as you move and turn, and navigate the turns and mazes of this life. I promise you, a new day is dawning, and with it comes the fulfillment of the very promise that you have been struggling over for years and even decades! HalleluYah!