Unofficial Notes from
International Conferences for Clergy Questions And Answers
ICC - Questions And Answers - Jacob And Esau
QUESTION: 1. Was the angel that Jacob wrestled Satan? If so, why was Jacob blessed by Satan?
ANSWER: No, the angel was sent by God as a representative of the angel Lucifer. We can see in the name the angel gave him, which means he who struggles with God and men and overcomes, that the angel was sent by God. This is similar to the event of John the Baptist's baptism of Jesus.
QUESTION: 2. Why did it take 1500 years following Jacob-Esau for Christ to come?
ANSWER: As I explained on my presentation, after Jacob's victory, the family of Israel had to fulfill the condition of indemnity required as a result of Abraham's failure ( thus, 400 years of exile). From this point the tribe of Israel enters Egypt to begin this period. After 400 years, the world had advanced from the tribal level into the national level. Thus, Moses was sent to accomplish this task. Because of repeated failure the time was prolonged. There was apostasy in the period of Judges, at the time of Solomon, baal worship after that, the exile and renewal after that. Finally, centering on the work of Ezra and Nehemiah, Zerubbabel and Joshua the high priest, the temple was rebuilt, repentance was exacted and this began the 400 year period for the preparation for Christs coming. Thus the final prophet is Malachi, and the Old Testament closes.
There is not enough time to explain the difference between the 400 years before and after Jesus. Basically, the difference is the difference between law and grace.
QUESTION: 3. Why do you say Jacob wrestled with an angel? The Bible says in Gen 32:24-30 that Jacob wrestled with a man. It was this man that blessed Jacob. The power to bless is God's, therefore my belief is that the man that Jacob wrestled with was Jesus.
ANSWER: See Hosea 12:2-4. The Hebrew term for angel is bene elohim which literally means sons of God. The term is used, however, most commonly to mean angels. Sometimes then (in English translation) "man" is rendered for "angel". The three "men" who appear to Abraham (Gen. 18) are the same "men" who appear in Lot's family in Gen. 19, except in Gen. 19 the "men" are rendered "angels". So this is an English translation problem.
QUESTION: 4. Rebekah received the curse by pushing Jacob to deceive his father. She died before Jacob came back while Isaac lived to see Jacob again.
ANSWER: There is no scriptural evidence of a "curse" on Rebekah, nor is there any scripture which pinpoints the time of Rebekah's death. In pushing Jacob to gain Isaac's blessing, Rebekah was faithfully fulfilling what God declared years before when He told her "the elder must serve the younger".
QUESTION: 5. If Jacob fulfilled the condition of foundation of faith and substance, why didn't Christ come then? Why more indemnity?
ANSWER: Because of Abraham's failure to offer the dove and pigeon. If you'll remember the result of that failure was that God proclaimed that the Israelites must go a course of exile for 400 years in a land not their own (Egypt). Therefore, after Jacob's victory, we see that centering on Joseph the family of Jacob (Israel) moves into Egypt to begin that 400 year period. At the end of that period, God sends Moses to lead the people to the promised land and build a nation. God had to establish a chosen nation for the Christ because after the 400 year period the world had advanced out of the tribal level into the national level. To accomplish this required an additional 1600 years. Even so, that nation of Israel was exactly an extension of Jacob and his victory (the twelve sons of Jacob become the twelve tribes of Israel).
QUESTION: 6. How do you explain the "unfairness" toward Esau who did no wrong but was obedient as God demanded? If Isaac was a chosen man, why in fulfilling God's scripture, was he so easily deceived in his old age?
ANSWER: God was not unfair to Esau. Like Cain, Esau had to fulfill a very important role as representative of the archangel. His descendant became the King of Israel at the time of Jesus (Herod) and had John fulfilled his role, Herod could have led the entire secular side of Israel to Jesus.
Well, old Israel may have been a lot more cagey then you give him credit for. He made his wife happy, and at the same time his elder son couldn't put the blame on him or feel angry to him. Two birds with one stone!
QUESTION: 7. What is the meaning of Jacob wrestling the angel?
ANSWER: Jacob's wrestling of the angel represents the regaining of dominion of man over the angel and thus the restoration of the position of the first son, which had been claimed by the fallen angel Lucifer.
Jacob's wrestling with the angel and his ensuing dislocated hip indicates that spiritual beings can and do manifest in our human world in a very experiential way. It serves to remind us that Eve's relationship with Lucifer, though spiritual, was profound and real.
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