Wrestling with God


As Jacob returns to the promised land in Genesis 32, he’s attacked in the middle of the night. As the two men struggle until the break of day, it slowly begins to dawn on Jacob that there’s something special about his wrestling partner. In fact, by the end of the encounter, it’s revealed to Jacob that he’s actually been “striving with God.” Many commentators suggest that the patriarch wrestled with God in order to receive a divine blessing, but is that really what’s going on here? At what point does Jacob even realize this man’s true identity? Shane Rosenthal discusses this mysterious passage with Matt Foreman and Doug Van Dorn, authors of The Angel of the Lord.


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