I’m so glad you’re here and I just love your company. Today, you and I are going to meet Jacob and spend some time with him. His father was Isaac, and Isaac’s father was Abraham. You might have heard of the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob. That’s these guys. Today we’re going to talk about a dream that Jacob had. This was a really important dream in Jacob’s life; a definite milestone because God once again in his word shows us that He speaks to us through dreams. Lets find out more!
You ever hear the song Stairway to Heaven? Could have been inspired by a story in the Bible that you and I are going to read today on the Bible for Busy People. I’m so glad you’re here and I just love your company. Today, you and I are going to meet Jacob and spend some time with him. His father was Isaac, and Isaac’s father was Abraham. You might have heard of the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob. That’s these guys. Today we’re going to talk about a dream that Jacob had. It even has a title in our culture, Jacob’s Ladder. Maybe you’ve played the little crochet game, but this was a really important dream in Jacob’s life; a definite milestone because God once again in his word shows us that he speaks to us through dreams. All right, before we get to today’s text, a little background on Isaac and his son’s, Jacob and Esau. Yeah, there was some bad blood between these two brothers, and one day here on the podcast, I would love to dive into that story with you because it’s pretty powerful. But for today, just know that Jacob pretty much stole Esau’s birthright; the blessing from his father. Now, ultimately, they will reconcile, but it wouldn’t happen for many years, so just have that in the back of your mind as we begin reading together today. Join me in Genesis chapter 28 beginning in verse one.
So Isaac called for Jacob, blessed him, and said, “You must not marry any of these Canaanite women. 2 Instead, go at once to Paddan-aram, to the house of your grandfather Bethuel, and marry one of your uncle Laban’s daughters. 3 May God Almighty bless you and give you many children. And may your descendants multiply and become many nations! 4 May God pass on to you and your descendants the blessings he promised to Abraham.
That would be Jacob’s grandfather.
May you own this land where you are now living as a foreigner, for God gave this land to Abraham.”5 So Isaac sent Jacob away, and he went to Paddan-aram to stay with his uncle Laban, his mother’s brother, the son of Bethuel the Aramean. 6 Esau knew that his father, Isaac, had blessed Jacob and sent him to Paddan-aram to find a wife, and that he had warned Jacob, “You must not marry a Canaanite woman.” 7 He also knew that Jacob had obeyed his parents and gone to Paddan-aram. 8 It was now very clear to Esau that his father did not like the local Canaanite women. 9 So Esau visited his uncle Ishmael’s family and married one of Ishmael’s daughters, in addition to the wives he already had. His new wife’s name was Mahalath. She was the sister of Nebaioth and the daughter of Ishmael, Abraham’s son.
Now, it’s worth noting here that Esau was still very angry at his brother and his father, because you and I could clearly see that he just disobeyed Isaac’s wishes, and that’s what can happen, right? When we get bitter and angry? We turn away from doing the right thing. I’ve definitely experienced that in my own life. Lord, keep us away from bitterness. Please pull out every bitter root from our hearts who, okay, picking it up. Now in verse 10, we’re going to get to Jacob’s dream now.
Meanwhile, Jacob left Beersheba and traveled toward Haran. 11 At sundown he arrived at a good place to set up camp and stopped there for the night. Jacob found a stone to rest his head against and lay down to sleep.
Now, before we get into the dream here, I just want to note this happens at a very important intersection in Jacob’s life. He leaves the house of his father to go and find a wife. So, imagine falling asleep with those thoughts in your mind. The first part of your life is officially ending and a new life is about to begin, and I’m sure he was excited and nervous. I’m sure that every emoji was swimming around in his heart. I just wanted to offer that perspective. We continue now in verse 12.
As he slept, he dreamed of a stairway that reached from the earth up to heaven. And he saw the angels of God going up and down the stairway.13 At the top of the stairway stood the Lord, and he said, “I am the Lord, the God of your grandfather Abraham, and the God of your father, Isaac. The ground you are lying on belongs to you. I am giving it to you and your descendants. 14 Your descendants will be as numerous as the dust of the earth! They will spread out in all directions—to the west and the east, to the north and the south. And all the families of the earth will be blessed through you and your descendants. 15 What’s more, I am with you, and I will protect you wherever you go. One day I will bring you back to this land. I will not leave you until I have finished giving you everything I have promised you.”
What an introduction. The God of his grandfather and his father is now personal to Jacob. He says, I am the Lord. Here I am and I’m going to bless you. I’m sure if Jacob had any fears of not finding a wife and starting a family, they must have dissipated because look at what the Lord promised him in this dream. Picking it up in verse 16.
Then Jacob awoke from his sleep and said, “Surely the Lord is in this place, and I wasn’t even aware of it!” 17 But he was also afraid and said, “What an awesome place this is! It is none other than the house of God, the very gateway to heaven!”18 The next morning Jacob got up very early. He took the stone he had rested his head against, and he set it upright as a memorial pillar. Then he poured olive oil over it. 19 He named that place Bethel (which means “house of God”), although it was previously called Luz.20 Then Jacob made this vow: “If God will indeed be with me and protect me on this journey, and if he will provide me with food and clothing, 21 and if I return safely to my father’s home, then the Lord will certainly be my God. 22 And this memorial pillar I have set up will become a place for worshiping God, and I will present to God a tenth of everything he gives me.”
This is Jacob’s response to God, and it’s beautiful. He says, alright, I accept you. Maybe you are listening right now and your God is more like your grandmother or your grandfather’s God, or your father or your mother’s God, today is a great day to respond to the Lord who is speaking to you over time and space through his son Jesus, and saying, “I am the Lord. I’m your Lord.” And he is with you just as he was with Jacob. He’s the Lord and he wants to know you personally as well. All right, until next time, you are really loved.
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