AND JACOB WENT OUT
Genesis 28:10 ¶ And Jacob went out from Beersheba, and went toward Haran. 11 And he lighted upon a certain place, and tarried there all night, because the sun was set; and he took of the stones of that place, and put them for his pillows, and lay down in that place to sleep. 12 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. 13 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; 14 And thy seed shall be as the dust of the earth, and thou shalt spread abroad to the west, and to the east, and to the north, and to the south: and in thee and in thy seed shall all the families of the earth be blessed. 15 And, behold, I am with thee, and will keep thee in all places whither thou goest, and will bring thee again into this land; for I will not leave thee, until I have done that which I have spoken to thee of.
Genesis 28:16 ¶ And Jacob awaked out of his sleep, and he said, Surely the LORD is in this place; and I knew it not. 17 And he was afraid, and said, How dreadful is this place! this is none other but the house of God, and this is the gate of heaven. 18 And Jacob rose up early in the morning, and took the stone that he had put for his pillows, and set it up for a pillar, and poured oil upon the top of it. 19 And he called the name of that place Bethel: but the name of that city was called Luz at the first. 20 And Jacob vowed a vow, saying, If God will be with me, and will keep me in this way that I go, and will give me bread to eat, and raiment to put on, 21 So that I come again to my father’s house in peace; then shall the LORD be my God: 22 And this stone, which I have set for a pillar, shall be God’s house: and of all that thou shalt give me I will surely give the tenth unto thee.
Even though he has been home schooled, Jacob still does not know the Lord by a personal experience. For this to happen he must now ‘go out’ from his family’s encampment at Beersheba, towards Haran. All who come to know the Lord only do so on an individual basis of personal faith. Romans 14:22 Hast thou faith? have it to thyself before God. And that faith, which originates in the soul as a gift from the Lord, will act itself out in simultaneously realizing darkness! Ephesians 5:8 For ye were sometimes darkness, but now are ye light in the Lord: walk as children of light:
That which his father Isaac has come to have with the Lord by faith will not be accepted by the Lord on his behalf. It was Isaac’s Beersheba – “well of the oath.” We do benefit from our parents faith in a great many ways. But it is only that personal God-granted faith which is unto salvation! Ephesians 2:8 For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: 9 Not of works, lest any man should boast. 10 For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus unto good works, which God hath before ordained that we should walk in them. Notice in that verse ten that it states a soul with God-granted faith and God-ordained works is actually a ‘creation’ of God! Therefore the first three verses of our bibles concerns itself not with just the creation of the natural world, but is a picture of the creation of spiritual life within the believer! For as that Ephesians 5:8 verse has stated, every believer was ‘sometimes darkness.’ And the Lord Jesus Christ is the very light of the world, and the light of life! John 8:12 ¶ Then spake Jesus again unto them, saying, I am the light of the world: he that followeth me shall not walk in darkness, but shall have the light of life. As the Creator of the natural realm, he is the light of the world. And as the Creator of the the spiritual soul, he is revealed as the light of life!
So here is our Jacob, fleeing from the wrath to come. That is, fleeing upon his mother’s warning that his brother Esau plans to kill him. Genesis 27:42 And these words of Esau her elder son were told to Rebekah: and she sent and called Jacob her younger son, and said unto him, Behold, thy brother Esau, as touching thee, doth comfort himself, purposing to kill thee. 43 Now therefore, my son, obey my voice; and arise, flee thou to Laban my brother to Haran;
Therefore Jacob is a true type of the awakened sinner, fleeing to Christ Jesus by faith to escape the wrath of God against the unbelieving. John 3:36 He that believeth on the Son hath everlasting life: and he that believeth not the Son shall not see life; but the wrath of God abideth on him. Matthew 3:7 ¶ But when he saw many of the Pharisees and Sadducees come to his baptism, he said unto them, O generation of vipers, who hath warned you to flee from the wrath to come? 8 Bring forth therefore fruits meet for repentance: 9 And think not to say within yourselves, We have Abraham to our father: for I say unto you, that God is able of these stones to raise up children unto Abraham. 10 And now also the axe is laid unto the root of the trees: therefore every tree which bringeth not forth good fruit is hewn down, and cast into the fire.
And even that word, “Haran” is noteworthy in the journey of faith in the believing soul. For it’s meaning is, “parched.” It is derived from the Hebrew word translated, “are burned” in Job 30:30. For the Lord does not say, “if” you pass through fiery trials; but “when!” Isaiah 43:2 When thou passest through the waters, I will be with thee; and through the rivers, they shall not overflow thee: when thou walkest through the fire, thou shalt not be burned; neither shall the flame kindle upon thee. 1 Peter 1:7 That the trial of your faith, being much more precious than of gold that perisheth, though it be tried with fire, might be found unto praise and honour and glory at the appearing of Jesus Christ: 4:12 ¶ Beloved, think it not strange concerning the fiery trial which is to try you, as though some strange thing happened unto you: 4:13 But rejoice, inasmuch as ye are partakers of Christ’s sufferings; that, when his glory shall be revealed, ye may be glad also with exceeding joy.
Contrary to the popular myth of religion which dominates our nation today, we are not promised to be delivered “from” tribulation; but only delivered “in” it! 2 Corinthians 1:4 Who comforteth us in all our tribulation, that we may be able to comfort them which are in any trouble, by the comfort wherewith we ourselves are comforted of God. Noah was not delivered “from” the flood! He was delivered in it! Daniel was not delivered “from” the den of lions, but “in” it!
We sing so enthusiastically in church, “I must needs go home by the way of the cross!” But at the slightest inconvenience we rebuke God, by crying, “Why have you allowed this to happen to me?” For the cross is the greatest filtering agent to keep out all carnal religion from the kingdom of Christ! 1 Corinthians 1:29 That no flesh should glory in his presence.
Jacob, picturing Christ, had no place to lay his head. (Luke 9:57). And lying down on the ground to sleep, the Lord God reveals Himself in the form of a dream. And we read in our passage that as he dreamed, the LORD stood above a ladder which rested on earth, but reached to heaven. For no man has ever gone up to heaven to find out God! It is only as God has come down to earth that He has been revealed. (No matter what the fictitious Jack and the Bean Stalk implies!) John 3:13 And no man hath ascended up to heaven, but he that came down from heaven, even the Son of man which is in heaven. 1 Peter 1:12 Unto whom it was revealed, that not unto themselves, but unto us they did minister the things, which are now reported unto you by them that have preached the gospel unto you with the Holy Ghost sent down from heaven; which things the angels desire to look into.
And why is it our Jacob had a ladder experience, but not Abraham, nor Isaac? Neither Abraham, representing faith, nor Isaac, representing Sonship had such a ladder revelation. Only our Jacob, representing servitude receives this revelation. Yet listen to him describe his life to Pharaoh. Genesis 47:9 And Jacob said unto Pharaoh, The days of the years of my pilgrimage are an hundred and thirty years: few and evil have the days of the years of my life been, and have not attained unto the days of the years of the life of my fathers in the days of their pilgrimage.
Think about it. Abraham came on the scene with a wife. And Isaac just waited at home while his father’s eldest servant went to obtain his wife. But here is Jacob told by his mother to flee from Esau’s murderous intent, and “tarry” with her brother Laban, “a few days” until Esau calmed down. But that “few days” turned out to be twenty years! (See Genesis 31:41).
And such servitude of the church to go into the far country of the unregenerate and labor to bring back a bride for Christ, needs see the Lord God as an Incarnate Person! He needs to have the life changing vision of knowing by personal faith that his God is Lord above the ladder of mediation between man and God! For the Incarnation and resurrection of Christ is the very heart and soul of gospel motivation! 1 Timothy 2:5 For there is one God, and one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus; 1 Corinthians 15:15 Yea, and we are found false witnesses of God; because we have testified of God that he raised up Christ: whom he raised not up, if so be that the dead rise not. 16 For if the dead rise not, then is not Christ raised: 17 And if Christ be not raised, your faith is vain; ye are yet in your sins.
For the individual servant of Christ down through the ages has always been one whose regeneration derived its meaning from the resurrection! For the redeemed sinner is but a soul raised from the death of sin! He was as spiritually dead in trespass and sin as Lazarus was physically dead! The Lord even preached that the physical resurrection at the last day was the proof of the spiritual resurrection of regeneration in this age! John 5:25 Verily, verily, I say unto you, The hour is coming, and now is, when the dead shall hear the voice of the Son of God: and they that hear shall live. 26 For as the Father hath life in himself; so hath he given to the Son to have life in himself; 27 And hath given him authority to execute judgment also, because he is the Son of man. 28 Marvel not at this: for the hour is coming, in the which all that are in the graves shall hear his voice, 29 And shall come forth; they that have done good, unto the resurrection of life; and they that have done evil, unto the resurrection of damnation.
But now we come to the actual Incarnate Ladder! Consider these verses: John 1:47 Jesus saw Nathanael coming to him, and saith of him, Behold an Israelite indeed, in whom is no guile! 48 Nathanael saith unto him, Whence knowest thou me? Jesus answered and said unto him, Before that Philip called thee, when thou wast under the fig tree, I saw thee. 49 Nathanael answered and saith unto him, Rabbi, thou art the Son of God; thou art the King of Israel. 50 Jesus answered and said unto him, Because I said unto thee, I saw thee under the fig tree, believest thou? thou shalt see greater things than these. 51 And he saith unto him, Verily, verily, I say unto you, Hereafter ye shall see heaven open, and the angels of God ascending and descending upon the Son of man.
Here the Lord is not revealed as standing above the ladder, but as being the ladder itself! For Christ IS the connection of earth to heaven! And Nathaniel was to be one of the servants of Christ bringing him his spiritual Bride! Therefore Nathaniel, like Jacob, was assured of heaven’s connection with the disciples. And both came to know themselves as they came to know the Lord more fully! For Jacob was renamed Israel, and Nathaniel is told that even though he had a consciousness of the need of the earliest parents (Adam and Eve) to cover his sinful self, revealed by his relation to the fig tree, he was informed that his connection with Christ revealed himself as “an Israelite indeed, in whom is no guile!”
For as previously stated, coming to know the Light always causes one to know that they were darkness! Knowing the Lord reveals ones own self unto him! 1 Corinthians 13:12 For now we see through a glass, darkly; but then face to face: now I know in part; but then shall I know even as also I am known.
Let us finish out with a look at verse eighteen of our context. There we read that Jacob turned his p-i-l-l-o-w into a p-i-l-l-a-r! That which he had been resting upon now was set up as a public monument, testifying of his faith in the Lord God! Dear Reader, have you come to set the Lord Jesus forth as the pillar of your faith? Is he the anointed stone, testifying to all publicly that he is the source and support of your private rest?
The word “Christ” means “Anointed.” So Jacob was anointing his stone to show his relation to the living God! He did not make it an idol, for he didn’t come frequently to bow before it. The stone was representative of his living, anointed God!
Be careful how you approach this stone, dear ones. For on the ground it will cause you to stumble. The Jews looked into the face of God and said, “Is not this just Joseph’s son, whose brothers and sisters we know?” They saw nothing of God in Jesus but, as it were, just another rock on the ground. Romans 9:32 Wherefore? Because they sought it not by faith, but as it were by the works of the law. For they stumbled at that stumblingstone;
Matthew 21:44 And whosoever shall fall on this stone shall be broken: but on whomsoever it shall fall, it will grind him to powder. He shall be exalted above every name that is named, being Lord of all. Make sure you anoint him in your heart, so his sovereign power does not come down on you in destructive judgment! Be sure to make your p-i-l-l-o-w to be your p-i-l-l-a-r!
Pastor Gene Breed
May 7, 2016