If you have been struggling and you don’t know why, I want to introduce you to two times in Jacob’s life.
At Bethel, Jacob saw a ladder going up into heaven… but at Jabbok, he wrestles with the Lord, he is broken, and he sees the Lord “face to face”.
So Jacob called the name of the place Peniel, saying, “For I have seen God face to face, and yet my life has been delivered.”
Genesis 32:30 ESV
Every believer needs a Bethel experience to get to heaven, but every believer also needs a Jabbok experience to make us fit for use here and now.
And God can’t use you until He breaks you.
The two names made me think about how in the south, I’ve seen many “Bethel Baptist Church” in different towns — but I get the feeling that if there was ever a church named “Jabbok”, it might be more likely to be a revival, a service ministry, or a Pentecostal church because the focus isn’t on evangelism/salvation, but on service.
That isn’t a dig at my beloved Baptist brethren — it just points out a difference in purpose like a hand is different than a foot, but both are necessary for the whole purpose and proper working of ther body.
At Bethel, Jacob saw a ladder going up into heaven… but at Jabbok, he sees the Lord face to face.
“Some people can’t praise God and give Him glory because they haven’t been broken. They can’t shout and lift their hands and glorify the Lord. They are still too full of their pride. You still got good health. You still got enough money. You still got enough friends… God hasn’t broken you yet… and that’s why you can’t shout with enthusiasm. But just like you need a Bethel, you need a Jabbok.” – from the Youtube sermon I’ve linked below
Thank you, Jesus!