"And Isaac sent away Jacob: and he went to Padan-aram unto Laban, son
of Bethuel the Syrian, the brother of Rebekah, Jacob's and Esau's mother."
In chapter 27, Rebekah talked Isaac into sending Jacob to her brother's house so he would not
marry a Canaanite woman; at least that is the excuse for sending him away that she gave to
Jacob. The real reason was to get him away from his brother, Esau, who was plotting to kill
him. Although Jacob had deceived his father into giving him his brother's rightful blessing of
the first born, Isaac still called him in and blessed him again before sending him away. Jacob
must have had a winsome personality. That, coupled with the protection and blessings of God,
caused him to prosper wherever he went.
When Esau saw his brother being sent off to Haran to get a wife, He realized that his parents
were not pleased with his marriages so he decided to marry a daughter of Ishmael. He didn't
realize, though, that even though Ishmael was Abraham's son, God had separated him from the
house of Abraham.
"And he dreamed, and behold a ladder set up on the earth, and the top of it reached to heaven:
and behold the angels of God ascending and descending on it. And, behold, the Lord stood above
it, and said, I am the Lord God of Abraham thy father, and the God of Isaac: the land whereon
thou liest, to thee will I give it, and to thy seed;"
In verses 10 through 22 we find one of the best loved passages in the Bible and certainly one
of the most "painted" stories. When Jacob had traveled about 50 miles toward his destination,
he reached Luz, or Bethel. He spent the night there and had a dream. In his dream, a ladder
extended all the way to heaven and God was at the top. God told Jacob in the dream that He
was the God of his father and grandfather. He said He would give him and his decendants all
the land of Canaan and that his seed would be as the dust of the earth in multitude. The same
promises were given to Abraham earlier. He said He would not leave Jacob and would bring him
back home again eventually.
When Jacob woke up, he was very shaken and afraid. He said that he had not realized God was in
this place. He then took the stone he had used for a pillow and poured oil on it. He named
the place Bethel, meaning "house of God". He further promised God that if He would be with
him as He promised that he would follow Him and give him a tenth of all he was prospered.
Jacob was not a young man here, although he had never been married. Counting backward from
when his son Joseph stood before Pharoah at age 30 and when Jacob was presented to Pharoah at
age 130, Jacob was probably in his seventies when he left home. Yet this seems to be his first,
first-hand encounter with God and it is very important because it sets the tone for their
whole relationship in the coming years.
FOOD FOR THOUGHT
Why do you think God chose Jacob over Esau to receive the covenant promises?
Do you think God still appears to us in dreams today? Why or Why not.
Have you ever had a dream about heaven or has God ever told you something in a dream?
Thank you so much for doing the Bible Study with us this week. I hope you enjoyed your visit.
I am looking forward to hearing your answers to the questions this week. Please feel free to
e-mail me, post on the message board or write your comments in my guestbook so everyone can
see what you think!
BE SURE TO BOOKMARK THIS PAGE
SO YOU CAN FIND YOUR WAY BACK.