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Sorry Mike--I put my thoughts togeather before I read your thoughtfull insights. I just couldn't wait for you to post (smile)

Genesis 32:13-34:31
I am stuck on the 28th verse of Chapter 32 and I implore any Biblical Scholars, especially any who have knowledge of Hebrew to give comments,

As per King James, “And he said, Thy name shall be called no more Jacob, but Israel: for as a prince hast thou power with God and with men, and hast prevailed.”

I’m not stuck on how Jacob, now Israel, prevailed with God, I kind of got that, he prevailed by submitting his skill, cunning and his tendency to manipulate to the will of God. I’ve also read Bob Deffinbaugh,’s wonderful How to Win With God and Men, http://bible.org/page.asp?page_id=112, which lays down a great understandable (at least for me) argument. What I am mulling over is the name Israel and whether there is either a connection to Abraham’s wife, Sarah, or a play-on-word the two words, Sarah and Isral.

According to Crosswalk.com Israel, transliterated in the Hebrew is Yisra’el and its word origin comes from two sources, a Hebrew word transliterated as Sarah (Strong’s # 08280) and ‘el (Strong’s # 0352). Sarah means to: contend, have power, contend with, persist, exert oneself, persevere. ‘el: god, god-like one, mighty one The ‘el can be seen in, ELOHIM (El-o-heem), EL SHADDAI, to name just a few.

What I’m seeking is the relationship between the name God gave to Abraham’s wife (formerly known as Abram) Sarai to Sarah. Looking up Sarah, the name, in the Hebrew yielded, Sarah, transliterated, Sarah and given the Strong’s number, 08283. Sarah here means, noblewoman and the Word Origin is the same as Stong’s number, 08282 which is the masculine form of a Hebrew word meaning, prince, ruler, leader, chief, chieftain, official, captain.

My mind is just running away with all kinds of possibilities. Sarai was old and past the age of childbearing, as per the scriptures. Yet God prevailed over a “dead” womb in the woman who had her name changed to Sarah, which I am referring back to the two word origins of Israel.

There is so much in the portion of scripture for today; however, I have been stopped dead in my tracks by these two name changes. I covet anyone’s input and I am offering up these questions to God and expectantly wait for an answer by any means God chooses to give it. … Ask and it shall be given.
Matthew 11:7-30
Jesus talks about John the Baptist in the part of Matthew calling him greater than all who have ever lived. Yet Jesus introduces a new period of dispensation when he states that in the Kingdom of Heaven the most insignificant person is greater than John. Even the religious leaders understood that John’s ministry was a great and significant one even if they failed to accept that he was proclaiming and preparing the way for Jesus, the Christ, and head of the Kingdom of Heaven. They were looking for a political rule and reign, while Jesus’ dominion was spiritual. What they failed to grasp is what the writer of the book of 2 Corinthians states, the spiritual is more real than the what is perceived by the five senses because what can be seen comes from what is unseen. The physical temple that was in Jerusalem was but a copy of what is in Heaven. (Hebrews 8:5; 9:24) The spiritual gives birth to the temporal, those things that are in the realm of, taste, touch, sight, hearing, feel and smell.

2 Corinthians 4:18: While we look not at the things which are seen, but at the things which are not seen: for the things which are seen are temporal; but the things which are not seen are eternal.

Jesus asks us or commands us to do better than the “heathen” we are to love our enemies. I feel this command is given so that we will be like Jesus. For God so loved the world that he gave…. He gave while we were yet sinners, enemies of God, rebellious to right living and thinking (righteousness). Because we are the recipients of God’s grace and graciousness, we should go and do likewise.
Psalm 14:1-7
A fool can only say in his heart that there is no God because he has chosen to reject any proof of God. I know that this is what a fool does because I was once that “fool” A fool is a person who is arrogant believing that what one thinks and says dictates the course of the world. When people tell me they don’t believe in God I don’t try to argue with them I just say, “I’m sorry to here that.” In the first chapter of Romans Paul clearly states that they, and what I had done in the past, exchanged the truth for a lie. In order to exchange something one must have had ownership of it at sometime in order to exchange it. I can’t exchange a gift if I don’t have possession of it in my hot little hands.

Romans 1
21For although they knew God, they neither glorified him as God nor gave thanks to him, but their thinking became futile and their foolish hearts were darkened. 22Although they claimed to be wise, they became fools 23and exchanged the glory of the immortal God for images made to look like mortal man and birds and animals and reptiles.
24Therefore God gave them over in the sinful desires of their hearts to sexual impurity for the degrading of their bodies with one another. 25They exchanged the truth of God for a lie, and worshiped and served created things rather than the Creator–who is forever praised. Amen.
Proverbs 3:16-18
Wisdom, understanding and knowledge: this reminds me of another passage in Proverbs that reminds us that wisdom is expensive and most people are unwilling to pay the price to acquire it. That is why many people cheat on exams; they are unwilling to do the studying to get the information to pass the test. How long should one study? Until you get it. For some that takes one sitting for others it may take reading and studying a passage, chapter or book 30 plus times. This has both a spiritual and practical meaning to me as I work in a Collage. Most people go to school to get the degree as if that is the goal, the goal is to enjoy the journey as you travel toward the degree, and then keep on going on the journey even if there is not degree. That same principal can be applied to getting into the Word. It is not how many verses you can memorize; but how many verses one can incorporate and apply to living one’s life.

Proverbs 4:7 Wisdom is supreme; therefore get wisdom.
Though it cost all you have, get understanding.

Grace and peace,

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