The scriptures says of Jesus, in Luke 6:12, “It was at this time that He went off to the mountain to pray, and He spent the whole night in prayer to God.”
Jesus spent the entire night in prayer, that is, in the Israel of Jesus’s day night ended at 6 a.m. Have you ever spent the entire night in prayer? If not, you’re letting the best in life pass you by.
The scriptures tell of another person who spent the entire night wrestling, which is really a picture of Prayer. Genesis 32, records Jacob wrestling all night with a man until the break of day. We are told that Jacob was left alone, and there a man wrestled with him. They got down in the dirt and struggled all night. When the man saw that he had not Prevailed against Jacob, he touched (struck in the Greek) his thigh and put it out of joint. Then the man said, ” let me go because it’s almost Daybreak.”
Jacob said, “I will not let you go unless you bless me.” Jacob had to be exhausted after wrestling all night. I have a cousin who is very athletic, Bowled 300 games, won many competitions in handball, he understands perseverance and pain. He told me that when his thigh went out of joint after having it replaced in surgery, he had never felt such pain before. They had to carry him out of the house on a stretcher and take him to the hospital.
Nevertheless, Jacob, though his thigh was out of joint, and having wrestled all night, would not let the man go until he received the blessing. The blessing was a name change; his name was changed from Jacob or Thief to Israel or one who strives with God.
Jacob named that place Penuel, which by definition is face of God. The reason for the name is given in the next verse, for Jacob said, “I have seen God face to face yet my life is preserved.”
I, like every other Christian have faced many trials in the course of my life, and in every one I have prayed. The great blessing that has come out of each prayer has been to see God face-to-face, at the cross, humbled, suffering, and sacrificing for me.
Jacob began as a man who strove with God or against God. After spending a night in prayer he became Israel or one who strove with God. The great outcome of prayer for the Christian is that he is changed from a person who strives with or against God to one who strives with or for God.
I have spent many early mornings in prayer to God. On one particular day though I began to pray at 10 PM and did not finish until 7 AM. I can’t even express how such a night changed me. We never achieve perfection in this life, but we are transformed, from glory to glory, even by the spirit of the Lord.
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