Isaac sends Jacob to Padan-aram. (Verse 1-5.)
Esau marries the daughter of Ishmael. (Verse 6-9.)
Jacob’s vision. (Verse 10-15.)
The stone of Beth-el. (Verse 16-19.)
Jacob’s vow. (Verse 20-22.)
1 And Isaac called Jacob, and blessed him, and charged him, and said unto him, Thou shalt not take a wife of the daughters of Canaan.
[Gen 26:34, Gen 28:8, Gen 36:2, Heb 12:16]
2 Arise, go to Padanaram, to the house of Bethuel thy mother’s father; and take thee a wife from thence of the daughters of Laban thy mother’s brother.
3 And God Almighty bless thee, and make thee fruitful, and multiply thee, that thou mayest be a multitude of people;
4 And give thee the blessing of Abraham, to thee, and to thy seed with thee; that thou mayest inherit the land wherein thou art a stranger, which God gave unto Abraham.
this is the second blessing that Issac gives to Jacob; the first blessing was done by virtue of Jacob’s deceit in chapter 27. It is this second blessing that is described in Hebrews 11:20.
5 And Isaac sent away Jacob: and he went to Padanaram unto Laban, son of Bethuel the Syrian, the brother of Rebekah, Jacob’s and Esau’s mother.
Now you begin to see were Rebekah got her trickery from. She was taught it by her family. Today’s Soap Operas think they have new stuff. The Devil has been a liar from the beginning. Be careful Mom and Dad with the things you do in front of your children, they are watching and they are learning from you.
6 When Esau saw that Isaac had blessed Jacob, and sent him away to Padanaram, to take him a wife from thence; and that as he blessed him he gave him a charge, saying, Thou shalt not take a wife of the daughters of Canaan;
7 And that Jacob obeyed his father and his mother, and was gone to Padanaram;
8 And Esau seeing that the daughters of Canaan pleased not Isaac his father;
[Gen 26:34, Gen 28:1, Gen 36:2, Heb 12:16]
9 Then went Esau unto Ishmael, and took unto the wives which he had Mahalath the daughter of Ishmael Abraham’s son, the sister of Nebajoth, to be his wife.
Gen 36:3. Gen 25:13 Exod 20:12]
the intentional effort to irritate one’s parents.
Since Jacob, the momma’s boy, had gone to marry a girl related to his mother, Esau decided to marry someone who was a rebel on his father’s side of the family. Both Isaac and Rebekah were wrong for playing favorites. Because their loyalties were divided their house became divided and remains that way until this day.
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.
[John 1:51, Gen 31:1]
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;
[Gen 17:7, Gen 26:24]
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.
[abroad – outdoors; away from home; scattered about]
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.
[Gen 31:3, Gen 35:6, Hosea 12:4]
the trinity is in view in this verse according to the “us.”
God repeats his promise to Abraham, Isaac, and now to Jacob, and it is to this seed that the nation of Israel is to be forged. They are no better than anyone else but God has called them for a specific task to be the lineage through which the Messiah would come into the world and eventually save mankind. God also prophecies their deliverance from Egypt here, although he does not mention their captor by name.
16 And Jacob awaked out of his sleep, and he said, Surely the LORD is in this place; and I knew it not.
[Exod 3:5, Josh 5:15]
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.
[Gen 31:13, Gen 35:14]
19 And he called the name of that place Bethel: but the name of that city was called Luz at the first.
[Bethel – house of God]
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,
[Judges 11:30, 2nd Sam 15:8]
Jacob made a vow but put five conditions upon his vow that God must meet in order for Jacob to make Him “my God.” God is rarely in the business of meeting our demands. [Ecc 5:4-5]
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.
Jacob promises to give God the “tithe” or “tenth” of his increase. Compare with 14:20. Is God getting at least a “tenth” back from what he has blessed you with?
God did take care of Jacob and bring him back to his father’s house in peace. Jacob also pledged to begin tithing as did his Grandfather Abraham when he met with Melchisedek.
Commentary by Matthew Henry, 1710.
Verse 1-5 – Jacob had blessings promised both as to this world and that which is to come; yet goes out to a hard service. This corrected him for the fraud on his father. The blessing shall be conferred on him, yet he shall smart for the indirect course taken to obtain it. Jacob is dismissed by his father with a solemn charge. He must not take a wife of the daughters of Canaan: those who profess religion, should not marry with those that care not for religion. Also with a solemn blessing. Isaac had before blessed him unwittingly; now he does it designedly. This blessing is more full than the former; it is a gospel blessing. This promise looks as high as heaven, of which Canaan was a type. That was the better country which Jacob and the other patriarchs had in view.
Verse 6-9 – Good examples impress even the profane and malicious. But Esau thought, by pleasing his parents in one thing, to atone for other wrong doings. Carnal hearts are apt to think themselves as good as they should be, because in some one matter they are not so bad as they have been.
Verse 10-15 – Jacob’s conduct hitherto, as recorded, was not that of one who simply feared and trusted in God. But now in trouble, obliged to flee, he looked only to God to make him to dwell in safety, and he could lie down and sleep in the open air with his head upon a stone. Any true believer would be willing to take up with Jacob’s pillow, provided he might have Jacob’s vision. God’s time to visit his people with his comforts, is, when they are most destitute of other comforts, and other comforters. Jacob saw a ladder which reached from earth to heaven, the angels going up and coming down, and God himself at the head of it. This represents,
1. The providence of God, by which there is a constant intercourse kept up between heaven and earth. This let Jacob know that he had both a good guide and a good guard.
2. The mediation of Christ. He is this ladder; the foot on earth in his human nature, the top in heaven in his Divine nature. Christ is the Way; all God’s favours come to us, and all our services go to him, by Christ, John 1:51. By this way, sinners draw near to the throne of grace with acceptance. By faith we perceive this way, and in prayer we approach by it. In answer to prayer we receive all needful blessings of providence and grace. We have no way of getting to heaven but by Christ. And when the soul, by faith, can see these things, then every place will become pleasant, and every prospect joyful. He will never leave us, until his last promise is accomplished in our everlasting happiness. God now spake comfortably to Jacob. He spake from the head of the ladder. All the glad tidings we receive from heaven come through Jesus Christ. The Messiah should come from Jacob. Christ is the great blessing of the world. All that are blessed, are blessed in him, and none of any family are shut out from blessedness in him, but those that shut out themselves. Jacob had to fear danger from his brother Esau; but God promises to keep him. He had a long journey before him; to an unknown country; but, Behold, I am with thee, and God promises to bring him back again to this land. He seemed to be forsaken of all his friends; but God gives him this assurance, I will not leave thee. Whom God loves, he never leaves.
Verse 16-19 – God manifested himself and his favour, to Jacob, when he was asleep. The Spirit, like the wind, blows when and where it listeth, and God’s grace, like the dew, tarrieth not for the sons of men. Jacob sought to improve the visit God had made him. Wherever we are, in the city or in the desert, in the house or in the field, in the shop or in the street, we may keep up our intercourse with Heaven, if it is not our own fault. But the more we see of God, the more cause we see for holy trembling before him.
Verse 20-22 – Jacob made a solemn vow on this occasion. In this observe,
1. Jacob’s faith. He trusts that God will be with him, and will keep him; he depends upon it.
2. Jacob’s moderation in his desires. He asks not for soft clothing and dainty meat. If God give us much, we are bound to be thankful, and to use it for him; if he gives us but little, we are bound to be content, and cheerfully to enjoy him in it.
3. Jacob’s piety, and his regard to God, appear in what he desired, that God would be with him, and keep him. We need desire no more to make us easy and happy. Also his resolution is, to cleave to the Lord, as his God in covenant. When we receive more than common mercy from God, we should abound in gratitude to him. The tenth is a fit proportion to be devoted to God, and employed for him; though it may be more or less, as God prospers us, 1st Corinthians 16:2. Let us then remember our Bethels, how we stand engaged by solemn vows to yield ourselves to the Lord, to take him for our God, and to devote all we have and are to his glory!