Genesis 35:10 And God said unto him, thy name is Jacob: thy name shall not be called any more Jacob, but Israel shall be thy name: and he called his name Israel.
You are not what men say that you are: neither is your identity defined by your past or current circumstances. Who you are is what God says you are.
Jacob’s name means supplanter, which means to take the place of another by illegitimate means. When Jacob conspired with his mother to steal Esau’s blessing, it was done by deception. Prior to that, Jacob coerced Esau into giving him his birthright in exchange for a plate of food; that was not nice. Based on these two incidents, men would have concluded that Jacob was a bad person, but that was not who God said he was. In Genesis 35:10 God told Jacob that his name shall not be called any more Jacob, but Israel. What God was communicating to Jacob is that a deceiver is not who he was, so he should no longer be referred to in that way. Instead, he should be called Israel, which means prince of God or son of God.
While people may define us by our past or current circumstances, God sees us based on our purpose. Jacob’s purpose was to be a son of God and demonstrate his nature, so He called him Israel. Through the lineage of Abraham all nations of the earth would receive salvation, so God changed his name from Abram to Abraham, which means father of many nations. Some would have seen Moses as a murderer, but when God saw him, he saw a deliverer so that is what he used him to do. Refuse to accept any other characterization of yourself other than what God says that you are.
Life Application: Get into the mindset of seeing yourself how God sees you.
Prayer: Father, allow me to see you only through your eyes. May I never allow how men see me to define who I am. Thank you for seeing more than what the eyes can. In Jesus’ name, amen.
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