All That I Have Written Is Straw. . .

Meanderings of a Catholic Devout

Jacob the Comedian

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Jacob Wrestling with the Angel (Photo by Don Saco)

 Tonight, I candidly explored some of my favorite passages of scripture with my beau.  I started looking at it because we were chatting about names and angels and then I needed to recollect the story of Jacob wrestling with God at Peniel (Gen. 32).  I was pointing out that even the Bible has comic relief moments.    

After all, there really isn’t any given reason as to why Jacob begins wrestling with the “man”.  (In some interpretations, the “man” is an angel and is usually depicted that way in art, but many verses lead the reader to believe it was God Himself.  Perhaps in the body of the Son?)  There is just a random passage about a little old Jacob wrestling.  Was he really wrestling?  Grappling?  Throwing down?  Or was Jacob holding on to the entity because it was similar to what a person might do if they found a leprechaun, as I— so eloquently allegorized it, and make demands of it?  Why was it a nocturnal incident? 

Nevertheless, apparently some tremendous consequences come from this comedic passage.  Jacob gets a new name, Israel.  He has “seen the face of God” and had not perished.  Jacob, er, Israel, is now a converted man going forward. But we never learned the entity’s name, despite Jacob’s asking twice for it.  Ah!  The mighty power of knowing a name!  

I wish I could see this fight depicted in a way other than an angel, if it was God that he was indeed wrestling with.  Imagine the creativity in that!


Written by Written Straw

August 19, 2010 at 10:19 pm

Posted in Catholic, Faith

Tagged with , , , ,

One Response

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  1. It is strange that they seem to just start wrestling for no apparent reason. I would have liked to be privy to the reasons as to why a wrestling match between a holy entity and a man breaks out in the middle of the road. Also, when I re-read this now….I picture them both wearing Mexican wrestling masks.


    August 20, 2010 at 8:49 am

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