Not by wrestling, but by clinging

Not by wrestling, but by clinging
  Shall we be most blest;
Wrestling only brings us sorrow;
  Clinging brings us rest.
When we stay our feeble efforts,
  And from struggling cease,
Unconditional surrender
  Brings us God’s own peace.
Lean we all our weight on Jesus,
  Who alone can save;
He by might of love hath triumphed
  O’er His willing slave.
Yielding, we shall know true conquest;
  Dying, we shall live;
“Not my will, but Thine” prevaileth,
  Victory to give.
Henrich Brockhaus

Bellingham, WA, United States

Both wrestling and clinging take an effort. Both have action in mind, either mine that is by nature Satan's or the Lord's. The determining factor is as far as we are concerned our will. That's why the Lord Jesus decided in the ultimate hour of absolute dread "Not My will be done but Thine." Our clinging says: "I will that Your will be done in my life. Help me to bend my will absolutely to Yours because I absolutely trust You."


Spokane, WA, United States

Thank you, Isaiah. It wasn't clear to me what the wrestling meant until I read your comment! Praise the Lord that we can help each other come closer to our Lord by sharing our insights and our love for Him.

Isaiah Tor

Sydney, NSW, Australia

The writer of this hymn portrays oneness with Christ in terms of deep spiritual intimacy and dependence on Him in every single way. To "wrestle" here implies the energies of the flesh, as opposed to those of the mingled spirit. To "lean" is to resign all our efforts and resources to take Him as everything to us. Surely this requires us to yield to Him completely. But for this to happen we need to die to self, and have our natural energy, the strongest part of our natural being, made fundamentally "lame" so that we with our Jacobite nature may become the transformed and matured Israel where our very being so gained and saturated by the Lord is "victory".