“Happy is he that hath the God of Jacob for his help.” Psalms 146:5
The road to freedom is not necessarily an easy one. If you were blessed to be born into a family that shaped your identity around God’s Word, you will certainly have far less hurdles. This is why it is so important to “train up a child in the way he should go.” Proverbs 22:6
Many people begin the journey excited at all that God presents us through the Gospel. However, it is easy to become disillusioned by the training process and commitment necessary for our release from whatever captivity we find ourselves in.
The following commentary is a strong illustration of how God purifies our hearts to enable us to live free if we are but willing to submit to his loving care.
The God of Jacob, by J. C. Lambert, B. D.:
Few of God’s names are more suggestive than the one in the verse before us--the God of Jacob. It is very instructive, for example, and very comforting too, to find that God is willing to have His name so closely associated with that of a human being.
The vastness of the material universe, with all its myriad hosts of suns and stars, sometimes staggers our faith, and makes us wonder if human life can really be the object of the Almighty care and love.
To all such questionings we find an answer in this beautiful name. The God of unfathomable space and immeasurable time is not unmindful of the life of man, the Lord of all those starry hosts--He also is the God of Jacob.
And then this name shows, still further, that God cares not only for human beings, but for individual souls. The God of Jacob must be—…
You can read the whole context of this lesson here, but the part that is so incredibly meaningful is that our God is:
… One who purifies His sons [and daughters] by painful trial. Jacob has been called “a Janus, with two faces, one turned upwards to heaven, the other downwards to hell.”
But Jacob was more than a Janus, for Janus only had two faces, while Jacob had two hearts.
His two names point to his two natures--Jacob and Israel, the natural man and the spiritual man, the supplanter of his brother and the prince of God.
Now, here was the problem of Jacob’s life: how is the natural man to be spiritualized; how is the sinner to become a saint; how is the Jacob nature to be cast out, and the Israel nature to prevail?
And this was the answer which God gave on every page of Jacob’s history, it can only be done by sore and bitter trial.
As a refiner of silver or gold deals with the impure but precious metal, so did God deal with this wayward child of His love.
He sent him sorrow upon sorrow, until all the earthiness and dross was purged out of his heart, and Jacob became, not only in name, but in very nature, Israel, the prince of God.