Ladder for Spiritual transformation
Jacob dreamed in Genesis 28:12,
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.
Jacobs first spiritual encounter with the Lord, took the form of a dream which was unlike the Lord’s personal encounter with Abraham and Isaac.
On Jacob’s spiritual encounter, God appeared in dreams.
Did God change communication?
a) We know that Jacob was a trickster, a con-man.
b) He never wanted to be like Abraham or his father Isaac.
c) The name Jacob, meaning grasps at the heel, had taken root in his life, figuratively means; schemer, trickster, conman, deceiver.
In all this, Jacob was not a challenge to God, but unknowingly, a challenge to himself. God already has purpose and direction for our lives but far too often we believe that we possess the better plan. We believe that the Almighty needs our assistance and that without us helping to direct our purposes that the Lord's plans will come to no avail.
From birth, Jacob was given a name after the flesh. Isaac’s name had been given by God and Abram had been changed by God to Abraham by virtue of God imputing righteousness to him because of his faith.
But Jacob had been given his name on account of the information given by Rebekah’s midwife, that is, he held on to his brother’s heel.
When you are named after the flesh, you will answer the call of the flesh.
A life that has not ceased from listening to the flesh will answer and remain in bondage to the flesh until spiritual transformation comes.
Jacob was a grown man at the time his mother overheard the conversation between Esau and Isaac towards this same end, that Isaac had need of some “flesh” or venison.
He was named after the flesh, and both, mother and son agreed to fall under the captivating deception of flesh.
Hence, they both suffered, for as Jacob was forced to depart for fear of loosing his life, he had to bear the pain of his eyes never beholding his mother Rebekah again.
The family had been broken apart as each of them acted blindly, getting their cue from Isaac who was physically blind and prophetically so, since he was in rebellion to the word that there would be birth from Rachael womb two nations with the younger having rulership over the elder. Jesus said that when the blind lead the blind, they both fall into a ditch.
Many of us, blinded by our wrong attitude will continue in our wrong direction until God “touches” us and we begin to fully realize our pitiful existence. And it is our prayer that our rebellion to the word of God hasnt caused anyone to be hopelessly lost to their spiritual inheritance.
But there is a place called “Peniel”, the place where you see God face to face, where God changes your name from flesh to spirit, a place where you realize that your life has been going down a road to a place called “Destruction”, but for God we would be hopelessly lost.
Hence Jacob was given a name that was carnally driven but be spiritually led.
So here we see Jacob having a dream after he had wronged his brother Esau with the help of his mother, who had tried to assist God in working out his plan of bringing forth the seed that would bring man to reconciliation by the blood of Jesus.
Jacob is shown a ladder or staircase that is resting upon the earth and its reaches up and touches to the third heavens where the throne of God is established. What the staircase meant to Jacob
- There was still a connection between Abraham and God: a covenant.
- The initiation of the connection between Jacob and his divine head; he was getting to know God for himself; typified the body of Christ being connected to the Head (Ephesians1:19-23).
- That God would be his protection; his keeper, to attend to, to wait for, to guard, watch (man) Genesis 28:15
- That God had set up a space and time for his exile, after which God would give him peace and rest (angels of God ascending and descending on it, 28:12)
- That God is beginning to teach Jacob about faithfulness and so in a dream, shows him that irregardless of Jacob’s feelings, what his mind would have him to believe, what people may be saying about him as a trickster; that the Lord God of heaven was still in covenant with him.
So therefore, God was showing Jacob, that even though he had been exiled from his father’s house and under the threat of death from his brother, yet the Lord God of Abraham was merciful and would still show loving-kindness for Abraham’s sake and for the sake of his seed.
In other words, God’s had too much riding on the Abrahamic covenant.
Jacob here becomes a type of Christ, who was never rebuked by God, but in loving kindness drew him to becoming Israel.
The Bible says of Jesus in Hebrew 5:8 (KJV) that, 8 “Though he were a Son, yet learned he obedience by the things which he suffered;
In the same way, Jacob, though he was a son, also learned obedience by the things he suffered. Scripture notes Jacob’s suffering more so than his predecessor.
In Genesis 47:9 (KJV) says,
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.
Jacob was promised a physical gift, namely, the land on which stone he was rested, which he named Bethel.
Bethel means the House of God. God was speaking prophetically of the spiritual house to which all men were called that they should have rest.
He was showing him the purpose of the kingdom of his promised seed.
The scripture says,
“The land whereon thou liest, to thee will I give it, and to thy seed;” The Hebrew word for “liest” is the word ‘shakab’ which also means “to take rest” and “to lie down”.
As Jacob took rest on the ground in Bethel, the Lord connected with him by dream; to bind firmly by words certain promises that pertained to life and godliness.
God told him that,
a) He was the Lord who owned all things
b) He would give him the Land “whereon thou liest”
c) He would multiply his seed and cause them to spread over all the earth
d) He would cause all the families of the earth to be blessed by his seed
e) He would not forsake, but bring him back to this place in peace. Every time you made a mistake, but ran to God in repentance, he would be faithfully pardon.
f) He would do all that he had promised him
In other words, God preached the gospel message to Jacob in a dream!
In 1 Peter 2:5 (KJV) the word says,
5 Ye also, as lively stones, are built up a spiritual house, an holy priesthood, to offer up spiritual sacrifices, acceptable to God by Jesus Christ.
In Jacob’s dream, God gave him a vision of the spiritual house that was to come on account of his seed.
Jacob had a glimpse of the incarnate Christ and the Temple that was built without hands.
Mark 14:58 (KJV) gives the testimony of the enemies of Jesus hoping to destroy him. They said,
58 We heard him say, I will destroy this temple that is made with hands, and within three days I will build another made without hands.
He had a glimpse of that city mentioned in the book of Hebrews11:10, which hath foundations, whose builder and maker is God.
Jacob was so outdone, so astounded by what he was seeing that when he awoke, and knew that the presence of God was n that place, he became afraid.
Genesis 28:16-17 (KJV) says,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.
He said, this is where God lives. God has shown me the way into his presence.God has blessed me with the privilege of calling on him in this particular place. The gate to the “garden of Eden” that had been closed, God has now opened it unto me that I may freely practice the presence of God.