Jacob and God

Study Notes

Jacob and God

*1. Jacob Leaves Home *
- Okay, so recap! Rebekah (the mom) 94 and Jacob (the son) 98 had just tricked Issac (the dad) 97 into giving Jacob the blessing instead of Esau.
- After Jacob tricked his father, Esau 99 said that he was going to kill Jacob! Rebekah, their mom, was afraid for his life, so she told him to go to his uncle's house in Haran.
- Rebekah was super worried about Jacob marrying ungodly women because Esau married 2 ungodly women!
- SO Isaac calls for Jacob [pull them down together], and warns him not to marry an ungodly woman– instead, he tells Jacob to marry someone in the family. Isaac blesses Jacob to send him on his way!
- Genesis 28:3-4 “May God Almighty bless you and make you fruitful and increase your numbers until you become a community of peoples. 4 May he give you and your descendants the blessing given to Abraham, so that you may take possession of the land”
- Fruitfulness, increase, and land! That sounds like a God's blessing to me!

2. God talks with Jacob
- Jacob started his 400 mile journey alone on the way to Haran.
- God was working in Jacob even though he had been selfishly sneaky 2 times with Esau!
- Jesus is called the “author and perfecter of our faith”
- God knows how to lead us into trusting Him, even when we’re not great at following Him.
- One night, Jacob slept on the ground and used a stone for a pillow 102
- As he slept, “He had a dream in which he saw a ladder resting on the earth, with its top reaching to heaven, and the angels of God were ascending and descending on it” Genesis 28:12.
- So this ladder was kinda like a bridge between Heaven and Earth! Both heaven and earth are fully existing right now at the same time.
- Jumping ahead really quickly! When Jesus came to earth, He told people that HE was actually the ladder that made a way for heaven to touch earth!
- We wouldn't have access to the kingdom of God if it weren't for the Cross!
- Jesus is the only way to heaven, not just a way to heaven.
- John 14:6: Jesus says “I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me”
- God begins speaking to Jacob in the dream, reminding him of the promises of Abraham and Isaac that he is carrying– promises of abundance that would come through their family.
- God also gives Jacob 3 promises that were specific to him!
- Genesis 28:15 God said “1) I am with you and will watch over you wherever you go, and 2) I will bring you back to this land. 3) I will not leave you until I have done what I have promised you.”
- Because of Jesus, God never distances Himself from us. And THIS is the strength of the Christian life. No matter what, God is WITH us!
- Jacob woke up from the dream and knew that God had spoken to him. He got up, picked up the stone pillow, and set it as a marker to show the place where he met God. He poured oil over the stone and named it BETHEL, meaning, HOUSE OF GOD
- Jacob promised God that he would worship God and give to Him if God would take care of him.
- You can tell that Jacob’s heart is just beginning to grow into the true ways of God!

3. Jacob and the Well
- After a lot of traveling, Jacob came to a field where there was a well covered by a large rock.
- There were three flocks of sheep around waiting to be watered. Jacob talked to the shepherds, and they said they knew his Uncle Laban (the one he was to be staying with). Then, the shepherds pointed out that Laban’s daughter, Rachel was coming to water a flock!
- Genesis 29:10 “When Jacob saw Rachel daughter of his uncle Laban, and Laban’s sheep, he went over and rolled the stone away from the mouth of the well and watered his uncle’s sheep. Then Jacob kissed Rachel and began to weep aloud. He had told Rachel that he was a relative of her father and a son of Rebekah. So she ran and told her father.
- While rolling a huge stone away from a well, weeping, and kissing someone might seem like a huge reaction, remember that Isaac said Jacob was supposed to marry someone in the family! This brought a ton of hope to Jacob after such a weary journey!
- Laban (Jacob’s uncle and Rachel’s dad) and his family greeted Jacob with love, hugs, and kisses and took him to their home.

4. Jacob Marries Leah and Rachel
- Laban had a large family of sons and two daughters: Rachel (the one Jacob loved), and her older sister, Leah.
- Jacob lived in Uncle Laban’s home as a guest. He was a good worker, and every day he helped care for the flocks. After a month had passed, Laban said to Jacob; You shouldn't work for nothing just because you're my nephew. What shall I pay you?”
- By this time Jacob was in love with Rachel, so he said. "What I really want is to marry Rachel. I will work seven years for you if you will give her to me to be my wife."
- Laban agreed, and the seven years of work didn't seem long to Jacob because he loved Rachel so much!
- When the seven years were up, they had a wedding! Jacob thought he was marrying Rachel, but Uncle Laban tricked him by giving him Leah (the older sister) instead.
- Jacob was so upset– he had been in love with Rachel for so long! He went to his Uncle Laban and said, "Why have you deceived me like this? I served you for seven years for Rachel, not Leah!"
- Laban said, "is not our custom for a younger sister to marry before an older one. If you will work for me for another seven years, I will give you Rachel, too.
- Even though he was tricked, Jacob agreed to his uncle's terms. He married Rachel and then worked for Uncle Laban another 7 years.

5. Jacob’s Children
- Jacob and Leah (the wife he didn't love) had 6 sons.
- The Bible tells us Leah had so many sons because God saw that she wasn't loved– God cares about the hurting and moves toward them!
- Rachel, on the other hand, couldn't have children.
- Like Sarah (the wife of Abraham), she tried to take matters into her own hands.
- She convinced Jacob to marry 2 more women so he could have children with them.
- She was trying to build her family in her own strength instead of God’s.
- After every other woman had children with Jacob, Genesis 30 tells us that God remembered Rachel and allowed her to have her own son named Joseph.
- In those days men sometimes had more than one wife, even though God didn't design humans to have more than one spouse. Going outside of God’s design never leads to life! His Word and Spirit teach us how to live our lives, and it goes well for us when we obey these instructions!

6. Jacob Departs from Laban
- After 14 years, Jacob asked Laban if he could take his family and leave.
- Jacob did amazing work for Laban and grew the size of his flocks so much! Because of this, Laban didn't want Jacob to leave. Instead, he asked Jacob to name his price! he would finally pay him to stay.
- Jacob humbly proposed to Laban that he could take the spotted and speckled goats as his own for his payment.
- Laban liked this deal, because there weren't as many spotted goats, and he was a very selfish man.
- As Jacob tended to these flocks, God gave him instructions through dreams that resulted in his speckled goat group increasing in number and strength– they became even stronger than Laban’s!
- Even though Jacob was making lots of mistakes, God still wanted to teach Jacob about Himself! We can see God working on behalf of Abraham’s family line.
- God was on Jacobs; side, even though Laban wasn't. This is why we trust in God, not man, for provision, protection, and blessing!

We are including Sara's notes for complete transparency for parents.

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