Genesis 28 – Backpacking Through Europe

Last week we saw how Jacob tricked his blind father into giving him the blessing meant for his elder brother Esau. This enraged Esau to the point that he awaited his father’s death and the subsequent mandatory mourning period so that he can avenge himself by killing Jacob.

Rebecca heard of this plan and planted seeds of fear in Isaac so that he would let Jacob travel to her hometown on the pretense of finding a wife but her intention would have been to save her son.

Esau gets to know that Isaac has sent his brother to Paddan Aram in search for a bride and soon realized that perhaps his parents were not too happy with his choice of women. He quickly gets a wife from his uncle, Ishmael’s family, thinking that would earn him his father’s approval.

On his way to Harran, Jacob camped out in a place called Luz where he had a dream in which he saw a stairway to heaven and angels ascending and descending on it. God re-establishes his covenant with Jacob that he had earlier made with his father and grandfather.

Jacob’s response to the dream is fear and confusion as he starts building an idol to remember the place where God spoke to him. Ironically, Jacob promises a tenth of his wealth to the creator of the world provided the creator keeps providing for him during his journey.

Jacob did not know God or the plans He had for him. Maybe that is why he was afraid of the dream he saw. The only way to know the heart of God is to have regular fellowship with Him. That was missing in Jacob’s life and truth be told, in most of our lives today.

God has given us the spirit of discernment to know exactly who is guiding our lives. We may choose to ignore his commands, taking them in a wrong way like Jacob and start building our own idols or actually take our questions to God and ask Him to be our guide as we backpack through this life.

Questions Discussed in this Podcast

  1. Why is Rebecca worried that she will loose both her sons?
  2. Why is Jacob sent away to Harran without any company?
  3. Why is Jacob afraid in the presence of God?
  4. Why did Esau think he had to marry another women that too from Ishmael’s clan?
  5. How did Jacob know that the dream he had was from God, given that he responded to the dream by creating an idol?

Summary Question
How do we know whether a dream/vision is from God?


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