JACOB'S STRUGGLE

JACOB was one of the first persons to glimpse the truth of man's likeness to God. The familiar story of his struggle with the false sense of life, symbolized by "a man," is told in the thirty-second chapter of Genesis. Jacob was fearful lest his brother Esau, who had sold Jacob his birthright and whose hereditary blessing Jacob had taken by a ruse, should smite him and his family. Jacob was alone as he wrestled with material sense, and he persisted until he had seen God "face to face" and witnessed the power of Spirit destroying false consciousness.

The truth of Esau's real selfhood in Christ must have dawned upon Jacob's thought with great enlightenment, for when he later met his brother, Esau ran to him and kissed him; and Jacob said (Gen. 33:10), "I have seen thy face, as though I had seen the face of God, and thou wast pleased with me." Jacob broke the mortal dream of material sense and preserved the line of spiritual sense for posterity. The spiritual birthright of all men, promised to Abraham's seed and manifested in Isaac's peaceful life, evidently could not have been preserved by the carnally-minded Esau, who despised his birthright and who was destined to live by the sword. It is possible that the spiritual insight of Rebekah, who influenced her favorite son, had shown her that Jacob was the better fitted of the two brothers to carry on the line of spiritual unfoldment. The name Jacob means "supplanter." Spiritual sense always supplants unreal, material sense.

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July 14, 1956
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