Most of us, Christians would have come across this story while reading or heard it in a sermon or as part of a Bible Study. There is very little information provided about him in the scripture. Reading through the Old Testament, we can find some. We know that he was viewed or regarded in higher esteem than his brothers. We also know that he was a descendant of Judah.[Study Light]
I Chronicles 4:9–10
Jabez was honored more than his brothers; and his mother named him Jabez, saying, “Because I bore him in pain.”
It comes from his mother’s experience of childbirth. We don’t know whether he was the first child or not, just to gauge the relativity of his mother’s agony in childbirth. If he was the first child, there was no comparison at the time. If he was the last child, she would have had his siblings’ childbirth to compare to. Although this is an Old Testament prayer, it is one that still carries an extraordinary measure of miraculous power.
We could deduce that his brothers had some honour, as he was said to have had “more” honour than them. God of Israel is known to honour those that honour him. The Bible would have been referring to what he did in the eyes of the Lord, as opposed to the eyes of the world. That would have been the source of his honour, how he conducted himself in view of the law of the Lord. There was no evil attributed to him.
The Hebrew yabetz or יַעְבֵּץ which can be translated to “he makes sorrowful” is the closest that one can come to a meaning of it. This, of course, would mirror his mother’s sentiments due to the pain of delivering him.[BST]
What can we learn from him?
We can tell from the way that he is later described, that he would not have continued to live up to the way that he had begun his life. He had held on to God and been lifted from one that caused pain, to one that was blessed. As an honourable man, he would have undoubtedly have been a blessing to his mother. The cause of pain had become a constant joy and a source of pride.
Your begin should not be your end! You can rise above where you started. What other people have called you should not create boundaries for you.
How Can We Pray Like Jabez?
The verse below, in the book of 1st Chronicles in the Old Testament, tells us that he prayed. Not only was he a man of prayer, but he also called unto the Lord. He took his needs to him. Is there anyone better to call unto that thou would be blessed?
1 Chronicles 4:10 :
“Jabez cried out to the God of Israel saying, “Oh that You would bless me and enlarge my territory! Let your hand be with me, and keep me from harm so that I will be free from pain.” And God granted his request.”
1. He asks that his territory would be enlarged: When the righteous prosper.
2. Let your hand be with me: Go with me, Take not your spirit.
3. Keep me from harm, and pain (causer of pain). (Cain and Abel).
Enlarge my territory:
The very first thing that he asks for in his prayer is that his territory would be enlarged. Territory speaks of the sphere of influence. The word “enlarge” gives the impression that he already had some territory. You cannot enlarge something that is non-existent. In the book of Proverbs 11:10 When it goeth well with the righteous, the city rejoiceth: and when the wicked perish, there is shouting. This is a principle of God. He delights in giving good things to his children.
When he asks for his territory to be enlarged, we know that as an honourable man, he would have been a steward of the little that he had. It is God’s promise to give more to those who use what they have for his kingdom.
21 “The master was full of praise. ‘Well done, my good and faithful servant. You have been faithful in handling this small amount, so now I will give you many more responsibilities. Let’s celebrate together!
Our prayer should start from, Lord Jesus Christ, grant us grace to make the most of whatever you put into our hands. Father, make me a great steward!
Let your hand be with me:
We know from this that, he valued the presence of God. He knew that with a large territory, greater responsibility would require him to lean more on God! He placed value on the presence of God, as King David did.
Most of us would have come across this story while reading or heard it in a sermon or as part of a Bible Study. There is very little information provided about him in the scripture. Reading through the Old Testament, we can find some. We know that he was viewed or regarded in higher esteem than his brothers. We also know that he was a descendant of Judah.[Study Light]
Cast me not away from your presence, and take not your Holy Spirit from me.
Even if I am to have a greater territory, greater influence, without your presence, oh God, it is but vanity!
He understood as Moses had understood, Exodus 33:15
And he said to him, “If your presence will not go with me, do not bring us up from here.
If it would cost me your presence, I dont want it oh Lord!
That I’d be free of pain
He had been a source of pain at birth for his mother. His prayer was that of redemption. That which was at the beginning does not have to be with you to the end, that is what his prayer stood against. God is famous for rewriting stories! Let that be your testimony! His prayer was that his latter days would be greater than his former days!
The glory of this latter house shall be greater than of the former, saith the Lord of hosts: and in this place will I give peace, saith the Lord of hosts.
Prayer of Jabez for business
It goes without saying that if your business’ territory is large, it would reach a wider customer base, hence make more money. The church would do well to have influential Christians in the marketplace. It does not matter what the size of your business is, there is always more territory to which it can be enlarged. You can make this prayer a practical one.
Write down the territory that your business currently covers.
Write down the territory that you would like to enlarge it to.
Now, make your prayers pointed and direct. Lord this is my current territory, I pray that you would enlarge it to such and such.
If we had to recommend just one book, it would have to be Bruce Wilkinson’s The Prayer of Jabez: Breaking Through to the Blessed Life.
I cannot think of a more detailed book on this topic. It is well researched and written. This is a book that was released in 2000. Bruce explains how many people have contacted him with incredible stories of answered prayers. He collaborated with David Kopp on this one. To find out more about Bruce Wilkinson and his work, follow this link.
This is one of the books that you can read on a regular basis. It equips you to enhance your prayer life and tap into the divine favor of the giver of abundant blessings. The blessings are not all physical, they include spiritual blessing. The book has practical advice on how you can capture this miraculous power in your everyday life.
- He was honourable.
- He was a good steward with what he had.
- His prayer was that of increase. God answered Jabez’s prayer!
- God giving him more, would expand his will as well. He was placing resources in the hands of an honourable man!
- God caused his end to be better than his beginning.
- Besides prayer Jabez, it shows us that more can be derived from “Because I bore him in pain” didn’t deter him from achieving that which God had in store for him.
This is where the power of the prayer of Jabez was derived from. There are a lot of things that we can emulate from him if we are to walk in the same fruits that his prayer bore. We know that God granted his request. Let that be your testimony as well. As you are faithful with the small things, may God grant you more. May the one that gives seed to the sower, and causes it to rain grant you a bounty harvest, as you sow! Amen.
What impact would God giving you more have on your sphere? What impact would God enlarging your territory have on your family? On your friends? On the church? Your city and country? Our hope is that you would walk experience the greatest blessing as a servant of God. The Lord Jesus Christ has a bigger vision for you than what you may imagine your supposed destiny to be.
What is Jabez bible meaning?
This name in the bible is derived from the Hebrew yabetz or יַעְבֵּץ, meaning, “he makes me sorrowful.” His mother called him this because “she bore him in pain”. I Chron 4:9–10.
Where can I find the story of Jabez in the Bible?
This story can be found in the book of 1 Chronicle 4:9-10 in the bible. It is only two verses, which is very short for a man that uttered words that have become incredibly famous and significant.
What is the origin of the name Jabez?
It is in the bible, derived from the Hebrew yabetz or יַעְבֵּץ, meaning, “he makes me sorrowful.” His mother gave it to him because “she bore him in pain”. I Chron 4:9–10.
What is the correct pronunciation of Jabez?
No one could say for certain, seeing as it is derived from Hebrew yabetz or יַעְבֵּץ. Common English pronunciations are:
Where did Jabez come from?
He was from the tribe of Judah, which is one of the 12 tribes of Israel. There is no mention of his genealogy in the book of Chronicles.
How was Jabez more honourable?
No one could say for certain. Honour in the bible refers to the statue, which was tied to how the community and the Lord perceived you. He would have been honourable by following the Lord’s ways and caring for others in his community. He would have done this to a greater degree than his brothers. Although his prayer is a fairly short one, his life would have been filled with remarkable prayer and expressions of love on a daily basis.
How was Jabez blessed?
He was blessed through increase. His prayer was for God to enlarge his territory. The Lord did this. He sought that the God of Israel would bless him.
Who was Jabez father/mother?
No one could say for certain. All we know is that they were from one of the 12 tribes of Israel, Judah.
Why/How Jabez was born in pain?
This would have been in reference to a difficult delivery in labour. The reason why this occurred is not given in scripture. One can say that this is something that happens in childbirth at times.
Why was the prayer of Jabez answered?
Here are some reasons and principles to explain why his prayer was answered:
- He was honourable.
- He was a good steward of what he already had, so when he asked for more, God obliged.
What does Jabez mean in Hebrew?
In the bible, it is derived from the Hebrew yabetz or יַעְבֵּץ, meaning, “he makes me sorrowful.”