Genesis 32:29 Parallel Verses [⇓ See commentary ⇓]

Genesis 32:29, NIV: "Jacob said, 'Please tell me your name.' But he replied, 'Why do you ask my name?' Then he blessed him there."

Genesis 32:29, ESV: "Then Jacob asked him, “Please tell me your name.” But he said, “Why is it that you ask my name?” And there he blessed him."

Genesis 32:29, KJV: "And Jacob asked him, and said, Tell me, I pray thee, thy name. And he said, Wherefore is it that thou dost ask after my name? And he blessed him there."

Genesis 32:29, NASB: "And Jacob asked him and said, 'Please tell me your name.' But he said, 'Why is it that you ask my name?' And he blessed him there."

Genesis 32:29, NLT: "'Please tell me your name,' Jacob said. 'Why do you want to know my name?' the man replied. Then he blessed Jacob there."

Genesis 32:29, CSB: "Then Jacob asked him, "Please tell me your name." But he answered, "Why do you ask my name?" And he blessed him there."

What does Genesis 32:29 mean? [⇑ See verse text ⇑]

Jacob's mysterious attacker in the night has turned out to be God Himself in some physical form. Or, perhaps this was some kind of angel. After a lengthy stalemate, Jacob's opponent delivered a crippling blow to his hip. Jacob refused to submit, however, and insisted on being blessed. The man responded by asking Jacob—a man renowned for his lies and deceptions—to identify himself. Jacob does so, honestly, and God blessed Jacob by renaming him Israel, meaning "God fights."

Now Jacob asks for the man's name, a request which is flatly refused. In that era, knowing a person's name was considered to be a major advantage. It was believed that speaking or invoking a person's name could produce spiritual effects, coercing them or providing leverage. Jacob has already, submissively, given his real name to this man. The stranger, however, does no such thing. This, again, underscores the idea of mankind's total submission and subjection before God. He owes us nothing, and we have no leverage or power over Him, at all.