Time of Jacob’s Trouble

Genesis 32 & 33

(Jer.3:5-7; Dan.12:1; Mat.24:21)

The people of God will then be plunged into those scenes of affliction and distress described by the prophet as the time of Jacob’s trouble. Jacob’s night   of anguish, when he wrestled in prayer for deliverance from the hand of Esau represents the experience of God’s people in the time of trouble  GC 616


1. (32:1,2) Jacob had just come from one crises and is about to face another when heavenly angels appear to him again (Gen.28:12) – What insights come to mind from this as you think of hard times, & lulls in hard times, that you’ve faced? 



2. Read Revelation 7:1-3 Apply the above insight to the sealing ministry of the angels that we are going through right now before our “time of Jacob’s trouble ” (mark of beast test & 7 last plagues).




3.  How do these verses about angels encourage you today? Ps.34:7; Ps.91:11; Heb.1:14




4. (32:3-8) Why was Esau coming at Jacob with 400 men and why did this cause Jacob to be “greatly afraid and distressed?”




5.  What parallels can you apply to Jacob approaching his home, with destruction being threatened, and us today? Mat.24:9-14; Rev.13:15; Rev.17:13,14

6. Jacob sent a message that was not accepted, at first, by Esau. What is God sending us to the world with & how might we be received? (Mt.24:14; Rev.14:6; Rev.12:11) 




7. (32:9-12) Why was Jacob returning home anyway if it were such a dangerous thing to do? Compare this to Mat.22:2-6 and our commission today?




8. What do you do when you do what God says, you expect things to go well, but they do not? What did Jacob do? 




9. Recall a time when you had to remind someone of a promise that they made to you. Is it OK to do this with God? Think of a promise from God that you may want to remind Him of? (ex. Is.49:25).




10. Why does Jacob pray saying, “God of my father Abraham…” and how is that encouraging for us today? See Galatians 3:7,9,29




11.  If God led Jacob back to his brother Esau who was mean and had “somewhat against him.” How should we relate to “mean” people?  Read Matthew 5:23,24 and compare it your life today.




12. (32:13-23) Was Esau totally innocent in the rift between these two brothers? Does Jacob anywhere cast blame against his brother? What important relationship principle do we find here?


13. What does “restitution” mean? See Ex.22:1 & Lk.19:8,9. Is this what Jacob was doing with his “gifts”? How does this apply to us?




14. Does Jacob ever say anything bad against Esau? Read Matthew 5:44-47. How does this apply to us today? (Matthew 24:9-11)




15. (32:24-32) Who did Jacob wrestle with the day before he was about to be destroyed by Esau? In our times of trouble where is the real battle to be fought? Eph.6:12; Jms.4:7,8; 1Tim.6:12




16. Did Jacob disobey God in 32:26? Why or why not? Compare this to Matthew 15:22-28; Lk.11:5-8. How does this apply to our prayers?




17. When do you think Jacob realized he was wrestling with God? Why do you think God didn’t reveal Himself to him sooner? 




18. Jacob means: heel catcher / supplanter – to take the place of, often by trickery / deception or force. Israel means: to contend with God and prevail / overcome. How do the character traits of these two names apply to the two group of people in Earth’s last days? Hint… those who receive the mark of the beast are either deceived or forced to get it



19.  Who is the Israel of God today? Hint… it is a spiritual term referring to people of faith (personal relationship) in Jesus. See Rom.2:28,29; Rom.10:12; Gal,3:26-29; Gal.5:6; Mat.21:43

20. Who then would the 144,000 of the tribes of Israel be in Revelation 7 who receive the seal of God?

Note: They are Christians because they wash in the blood of Jesus :14. They are Adventist Christians since they live through earth’s last days. They are Sabbath keeping Adventist Christians because they receive God’s seal as opposed to the Beast’s mark :3.



21. (Gen.33) The happy ending! Did Jacob misread Esau’s intentions all along or did everything leading up to their meeting (relationship principles & wrestling with God) cause him to have a change of heart? What do you think and why?




22. Why is it important today that we are not just concerned about our relationship with God, we must also work to rightly relate to our fellow brothers and sisters around us?  1John 4:20; Mat.24:14




23. What other insights, lessons, applications, do you glean from this chapter? 




24. Why should you never let the fear & intimidation of what might happen stop you from pressing on in being faithful to God?


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