Key Scripture: Genesis 27:41-44; 28:10-17
When Isaac grew up, he got married and had twin boys. The older twin was named Esau, and the younger twin was named Jacob. God chose to use Jacob to continue his plan to grow Abraham’s big family and fill the earth with his glory. But Jacob had a sinful heart like everyone else. He played a mean trick on his father Isaac and his brother Esau. This made Esau so angry that he wanted to kill Jacob. To stay safe, Jacob had to leave home and run away from Esau.
Jacob set out on a journey to his uncle’s house, but the sun went down before he arrived. So, Jacob found a place outside to rest for the night. Using a stone as a pillow, Jacob went to sleep and had a dream. In the dream, he saw a ladder that stretched from the earth to heaven. There were angels going up and down the ladder, and God was at the top. God spoke to Jacob through the dream, making himself known as the God of his father Isaac and grandfather Abraham. God made promises to Jacob just as he had to Jacob’s father and grandfather.
God promised to be with Jacob. He would keep him safe and bring him back to this land where he slept. God promised that Jacob’s family would grow very big and spread across the earth so people from every nation could be blessed.
Through the dream, God was showing Jacob that he would make a way for sinful people to be with God again. Remember how the people tried to make their own staircase to heaven by building a tower at Babel? Well, God showed Jacob that he was the one who would make a way for his people to be with him again. God would provide the ladder!
God kept his promise. He kept Jacob safe and gave him twelve sons. Those twelve sons and all their many children eventually became the nation of Israel–God’s chosen people! It was through the nation of Israel that God provided the true ladder to heaven. But this ladder didn’t look like the one Jacob saw in his dream. It looked like a person.
Main Point: God blessed Isaac’s son Jacob. In a dream, God showed Jacob that he would provide a ladder as the way for sinful people to get to God in heaven.
Christ Connection: Jesus Christ is the ladder! Trusting in him is the only way to get to God (John 1:51).