There is no doubt about it, Israel is of special interest to God, which is of course the very reason why the world hates this Nation; simply because God has chosen to love it and to place His Name there. People might not know this, but behind this incessant hatred is the enemy of our souls who deems it his privilege and right to hate everything God loves. He hates everything He has created, and goes about to destroy all he can to thwart God’s perfect plans and schedule as mapped out in Scripture. He hates the Word of God because He knows that God will have the final say… it’s only a matter of time.
It all began with a covenant that was made by God with Abraham long ago. He called Abraham out from among his family and country to go where God would show him until he finally arrived in the land of Canaan. There God promised him a Son even though he was an old man. God told Abraham that through this son He would raise up a Nation He would call His own through which He would demonstrate His goodness and faithfulness.
After a long wait Sarah bear Abraham the son God promised, who they named Isaac, which means ‘laughter’! After all, it was somewhat of a laughable matter because of the fact that Sarah was past the age of bearing children.
Isaac then became a father of twins via his wife called Rebecca. Contrary to the customs of the day, God declared that the firstborn child would serve the younger one! And so when her time came, Rebecca gave birth to two boys. The firstborn was called Esau, and the second one was called Jacob.
Jacob after spending some years away from his parents homeland returned with his large family born to him via his two wives Leah & Rachel. Jacob’s character was not the most endearing which was the meaning of his name. He was given to acquiring what he wanted through deceit and manipulation.
But one night on his return journey back home to be reconciled with his brother, there wrestled with him a Man, who we know to be a pre-Bethlehem appearance of the Lord Jesus. There was Jacob prevailing over this Man demanding a blessing. He had to learn as we all do that blessing never precedes brokenness. The Man asked Jacob’s name, which meant he had to be honest and confess his character and utter unworthiness for blessing. From then on he had a disjointed hip and was given a brand new name … Israel! From Jacob, which means ‘supplanter’ or ‘deceiver’, to Israel, which means ‘a Prince with God’!