Day 3: The Way Of The Warrior - The Warrior's Journey®

Day 3: The Way Of The Warrior

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The LORD is a man of war; the LORD is his name.  (Exod. 15:3 ESV)

We saw in our last devotional, the Lord was a warrior who was willing to engage Satan, with a fervency that was focused and deadly.  The Lord did not shrink from engagement, rather he moved forward like a rocket, to repair what had been damaged by Satan’s subversion (Gen. 3:15).  The Lord’s warrior mindset was total victory with Satan squashed like watermelon meeting a .50 cal. Amour Piecing Round. That is yet in the future.

Next, we want to witness how the Lord dealt with his own follower, a man of immense strength, who decided he had to manipulate his world, his family, his culture, to secure his own way.

His name was Jacob.  He was in the privileged lineage of Abraham, and was an heir to worldly, as well as spiritual heritage.  Jacob, was Abraham’s grandson, his father was the well-known, Isaac.  Often in the Scripture, you will see the Lord identifying himself, as the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, the God of Jacob (Exodus 3:15, 16).  The future promised seed of Messiah would come from their lineage.

Jacob’s names means ‘usurper;’ one who deviously takes what is not his.  Jacob stole his  brother’s inheritance.  Esau lost his inheritance because Jacob manipulated through deception, his Father Isaac’s, blessing, and stole the inheritance (Gen:27).  Jacob was a smarmy guy. However, Jacob got taken by his father-in-law, then he reversed the roles and was duplicitous to Laban, his father-in-law. It was a sordid story.  In addition, Esau, had promised to kill Jacob for his treachery.  Jacob was not well-liked.

The one person who had regard for Jacob was the Lord.  He can see potential.

Now Jacob was a person who was immensely strong.  Genesis 29:3 and when all the flocks were gathered there, the shepherds would roll the stone from the mouth of the well and water the sheep, and put the stone back in its place over the mouth of the well.  Jacob happened to be at the well when a girl Rachel came with a flock, and he noted she could not water her flock, “We cannot until all the flocks are gathered together and the stone is rolled from the mouth of the well; then we water the sheep.” (Gen. 29:8 ESV).  Well Jacob, seeing the damsel in distress: Jacob came near and rolled the stone from the well’s mouth and watered the flock… (Gen. 29:10 ESV).  Remember: shepherds would roll the stone from the mouth of the well.  Jacob would make Hulk Hogan look like a whimp.

A few chapters later, Gen 32, the Lord shows up and meets Jacob, mano v. mano.  And Jacob was left alone. And a man wrestled with him until the breaking of the day. (Gen. 32:24 ESV).  An odd introduction to an odd event.  The Lord and Jacob just begin wrestling.

I’m a grandpa, and I’ve wrestled my grandsons and when they were young, I’d kinda win.  Of course, I could have beaten them quickly, but I exaggerated their strength, and I let the match be close.  Listen, the Lord, the Creator of the Universe could have beaten Jacob in a millisecond, but the Lord was giving a lesson.

Eventually, the Lord dislocates his hip (32:25), the Lord actually hurts Jacob.  To Jacob’s credit, out of desperation he clung to the Lord, and said: “I will not let you go unless you bless me.” (Gen. 32:26 ESV).  One asks for a blessing from one who is greater than you.  Blessings go from the greater to the lesser.

Strangely, the Lord asks Jacob’s name.  Why?  Didn’t he already know him?  Of course, but this is an opportunity for Jacob to be honest.  Remember, his name indicates he’s manipulative, a conniver, and dishonest.  Jacob answers: Jacob.  He finally is honest and admits his character, to God.  He admits his name is appropriate.

With Jacob’s simple confession comes an acknowledgement of change of character: Then he said, “Your name shall no longer be called Jacob, but Israel, for you have striven with God and with men, and have prevailed.” (Gen. 32:28 ESV).  Israel means: ‘God Prevails.’

Jacob had bested his father, Isaac; his brother, Esau; and his father-in-law, Laban.  He did not best the Lord.  Instead the Lord blessed him.

Jacob understood his injury was now a privilege: “For I have seen God face to face, and yet my life has been delivered.” (Gen. 32:30 ESV).  Jacob had clung to the Lord with tenacity, desiring not to come out on top, but to receive something he was not worthy of.  The book of Hosea adds a bit more to the story about the wrestling match: He strove with the angel and prevailed; he wept and sought his favor. He met God at Bethel, and there God spoke with us— (Hos. 12:4 ESV).  Jacob had come to the end of himself, he wept and sought God’s favor!

Have you?

Jacob’s story is our story.  The Lord — ‘the’ Warrior is willing to take on a believer, who has not matured.  The Lord is willing to go to the mat with you, imposing his will, then his blessing on the believer who resists him, one wants to live life on his own terms.  The Lord will have none of that and is willing to come into our life, for our own good, with intentions to minister spiritual health, often using challenging means.

Read the book of Jonah as another example.


Dear Heavenly Father,

Thank you for allowing me to come into your Throne Room.  Thank you I do not need an appointment, I can just show up and you are thrilled that I have come to share life issues with you.  You have told me: Call to me and I will answer you, and will tell you great and hidden things that you have not known. (Jer. 33:3 ESV).  I can receive all the glories of Heaven because you have invited me into your presence.

Father, I need you to minister spiritual maturity into my life.  Help me do those things that are unnatural and uncomfortable for me.  Minister to me hope, so that I can be a beacon of hope, minister love to me, so I can express and show genuine love to my wife, family and others.  Minister faith to me, so I can grow into a spiritual giant, that others will see and desire to experience what I am living.

Help me to see with spiritual eyesight, not the present, but what can be.  Help me to be able to express that to others who are spiritually timid.  Give others a glimmer of what can be, with the forward looking and forward leaning that I live, under your guidance.  Let others have confidence in you, because they see that in me – full throated trust in the omni-potent God of glory.

Let you receive glory, that you deserve, because I fully live to make much of you.


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