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Jacob prays for a blessing

After being away for a couple of decades, Jacob heads home with two companies of peoples and a massive amount of livestock. Clearly, God has blessed him! So why does he pray to be blessed?

Genesis 32:26 – a prayer of Jacob
And he (a man of God or angel)said, Let me go, for the day breaketh.
And he (Jacob) said, I will not let thee go, except thou bless me.
From the Book of KJV Prayers – actual prayers from God’s Word collected by Mary Harwell Sayler, ©2019, from the King James Version of the Bible

Genesis 32:26 – a prayer of Jacob
Lord, I will not let You go until You bless me!
From the Book of Bible Prayersactual prayers of the Bible collected from a variety of translations and paraphrased by Mary Harwell Sayler, ©2019

Jacob prays for deliverance

Trickery and an aptitude for manipulating people marked Jacob’s early years, but after being treated that way for a long time by his father-in-law, this son of Isaac headed home with a new attitude.
The problem was, Jacob didn’t know what his twin brother Esau, whom he’d tricked more than once, might do! However, Jacob did know God had blessed him. Humbling himself before the Lord, he asked for protection and deliverance in this prayer.

Genesis 32:10-11a prayer of Jacob
I am not worthy of the least of all the mercies, and of all the truth, which thou hast shewed unto thy servant; for with my staff I passed over this Jordan; and now I am become two bands.
Deliver me, I pray thee, from the hand of my brother, from the hand of Esau: for I fear him, lest he will come and smite me, and the mother with the children.
From the Book of KJV Prayersactual prayers in God’s Word collected by Mary Harwell Sayler, ©2019, from the King James Version of the Bible

Genesis 32:10-11a paraphrased prayer of …

Jacob’s vow: making a deal with God

In times of uncertainty or doubt, many of us have prayed, “Lord, IF You will ___(fill in the blank), THEN I will ___(fill in the blank.)” That’s what Jacob did.
This son of Isaac and twin brother of Esau didn't know if God would be with him the way He had been with Jacob’s grandfather Abraham. He’d undoubtedly heard his family’s stories of faith, but maybe he thought that tricking his brother and his father had put him on the outs with God.
Now on the run from his brother’s wrath, Jacob fled toward his mother’s family many, many miles away. Alone and in new terrain, he made a vow to God in this prayer:


Genesis 28:20-22 from the King James Version of the Bible
and the Book of KJV prayers
And Jacob vowed a vow, saying, If God will be with me, and will keep me in this way that I go, and will give me bread to eat, and raiment to put on, So that I come again to my father's house in peace; then shall the Lord be my God: And this stone, which I have set for a pillar, shall be God's ho…

God hears groans as prayers

Background: After the sons of Jacob sold their brother Joseph into slavery, many years went by before a famine brought the family together again in Egypt. Ironically, the famine also brought many native Egyptians into slavery under the rule of Joseph, who had risen to the position second only to Pharaoh. Whether this enslaved the Twelve Tribes of Israel is not clear. Regardless, the Hebrew people remained in Egypt long after the famine had passed because, 400 years later, they were still there!

By then Joseph had long been forgotten, and God’s people were slaves for sure. In fact, conditions had become so terribly cruel that the firstborn son in every family was killed. According to the familiar story in Exodus 2, though, Moses’ mother placed her beautiful child in a waterproof basket and set him afloat on the Nile River. When Pharaoh’s daughter found him, she sent Miriam – Moses’ sister – to look for a nurse among the Hebrew women, and the girl brought her mother to care for her own…

Joseph, Judah, and an unusual prayer

Background: Jacob (Israel) had one daughter and a dozen sons. Of the twelve, Joseph was clearly the favorite and everyone knew it, including Joseph. Eventually, the brothers got tired of his spying and tattling on them but were probably even wearier of being ignored and undervalued by a father prone toward favoritism.

The older brothers had had it with the little prince, whom their dad dressed in a colorful coat with long sleeves totally unsuitable for work! But, instead of killing the kid, as Cain would have done, they sold Joseph into slavery.

The familiar story begins in Genesis 37 and keeps going until Exodus while Joseph continues to have faith that God favored him. Not so with Judah, who winds up with two sons so wicked that God took them out of the family line!

After his wife also dies, Judah is seduced by a woman he thinks is a prostitute but is really the widow of both of his sons! In high contrast, the beloved Joseph refuses advances from his master’s wife, keeping his hi…

Jacobs wrestles an angel and becomes Israel

Background: When Jacob fled from home after wrestling his father’s blessing from Esau, he vowed to worship God if everything happened as promised. It did, of course, since God does not and cannot lie. However, many years went by before Jacob felt free to go home.

After the long journey began, God sent angels to greet Jacob. In turn, Jacob sent his servants to meet, greet, and make peace with his older twin brother Esau of whom he was greatly afraid (Genesis 32:7.) To protect himself and his family, Jacob divided the people and livestock into two camps, thinking that, if Esau destroyed one, the other would be able to escape. (Genesis 32:8.)

Then Jacob prayed: “O, LORD God of my father Abraham and God of my father Isaac, You told me, ‘Return to your land and the place of your birth, and I will do well for you.’ But LORD, I am not worthy of the least of Your mercies or of Your truth which You have fulfilled for me, Your servant. With only my walking stick, I passed over the Jordan River…

Blessing, vow, pledge, and promise

“Isaac called for Jacob, blessed him, and said, “Do not marry a Canaanite woman but hurry to the house of your grandfather in Paddan-aram and marry one of your uncle Laban’s daughters. May God Almighty bless you with many children, and may your descendants become many nations. May God pass on to you and your descendants the blessings promised to Abraham, and may you possess this land where you now live as a stranger, for God gave this land to Abraham,” Genesis 28:1-4.

After getting the family blessing he had deceptively wangled from his twin brother Esau, Jacob obeyed his father and set off on a journey of a few hundred lonely miles to find a wife.

And so, “Jacob left Beersheba and traveled toward Haran. Before sunset he arrived at a good place to stop for the night and set up camp. When he found a stone for a pillow, Jacob lay down to sleep, and as he slept, he dreamed of a ladder (or stairway) reaching from earth to heaven with angels of God going up and down. At the top of the ladd…