#565 – A New Name (Genesis 35:10–12)

Pray The Word
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“God said to him, ‘Your name is Jacob. No longer shall your name be called Jacob, but Israel shall be your name.’ So he called his name Israel and God said to him, ‘ I am God almighty, be fruitful and multiply; a nation and a company of nations shall come from you and kings shall come from your own body. The land that I give to Abraham and Isaac, I will give to you and I will give the land to your offspring after you.’
(Genesis 35:10–12)

These are amazing verses when you think about who God is speaking to; Jacob, the deceiver, Jacob the sinner at the core, just like all of us, but we have seen, as we read through the book of Genesis, Jacob’s sin on so many different levels. As we read through the book of Genesis, we see Jacob’s sin over and over and over again, yet here is the Holy God of the universe, who hates sin, who judges sinners, pouring out his blessing on Jacob. Renaming him, transforming him and promising him a company of nations that’ll come from his line. A land that just as he promised to Abraham, he’s now promising to Jacob. Just as he promised to Isaac, he’s now promising to Jacob.

Just as God gave Jacob a new name, He is gracious to us and has provided our salvation in Christ. May we never cease to be overwhelmed by God’s grace that He has poured out on us.

It is startling when we sit back and think about the grace of God, not just towards Jacob, but in each one of our lives. I was thinking, just this week, when I was preaching somewhere and I’m about to preach and it just hit me, in a fresh way, I should be in hell right now, but here I am, I was singing and worshiping God for the salvation I know, surrounded by brothers and sisters in this particular setting where I was preaching in Christ. Just a sweet fellowship with the brothers and sisters in that place and then I was standing up to preach God’s word to encourage people to know God and I’m thinking, this is beyond words. I don’t deserve this.

I just think the same is true in my life today. I woke up, I had time with the lord, like communion with God and I look at all the evidence’s of God’s grace in my life, in my family, in my work and relationships, in friendships and the church. Just in the health that he’s given me and breath, I mean, in so many different ways God as poured out his blessing on me, so I just want to encourage you and us, as we pray, just to contemplate the blessing of God in your life today, in my life today and let’s never cease to be overwhelmed by it. We don’t deserve the grace that as been poured out on us and yet God pours it out every single day.

Oh God, we glorify your name. We praise you. We thank you for your grace. We are awed by your grace, we are humbled by your grace. We know, we deserve to be separated from you forever. We deserve judgment for our sin and yet, here we are, communing with you right now. Thinking about your word and surrounded by so many evidence’s of your blessing in our lives, your promises that we lean on, obviously not the exact same promises as Jacob heard here, but our lives are banking on so many more promises that you’ve given us today. Promises that we don’t deserve, not one of them, yet you have made them. By your grace, you have transformed our lives by your grace. Your transforming our lives more and more everyday by your grace.

God we praise you for your grace and even as we thank you in all these ways, we pray that your grace toward us would bring great glory to you. God we pray for the spread of your grace where it’s not yet gone, specifically in the gospel. God we pray for people in the world, like the Minyak in China, The Minyak people group who have little to no knowledge of your grace in Christ. They do stand under your holy judgment now and they need to hear about your grace. Please oh God, cause the Minyak in China to hear about your grace. Send laborers there. Even as we praise you for your grace, we pray for the spread of your grace and your gospel to people who’ve never heard it and for the spread of your grace and gospel through our lives, through our lips today.
All glory be to your name for the grace you give us. In Jesus name we pray, Amen.

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David Platt serves as pastor at McLean Bible Church in Washington, D.C. He is the founder and president of Radical. He is the author of several books, including Radical, Radical Together, Follow Me, Counter Culture, and Something Needs to Change.
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