[In the story of Jacob’s ladder we find a marvelous
revelation about salvation.
The book of Genesis is the seedbed of all Biblical doctrine.
We have marvelous spiritual gems and truths given in symbol and
type in the book of Genesis.]
[Nature forms us, sin deforms us, education informs
us, penitentiary’s try to reform us, but only Jesus can transform us.
If you would like to be transformed, then you can be transformed,
you can be made brand new through the Lord Jesus Christ and the
salvation He offers.]
[The Old Testament says somebody is coming, the New
Testament says somebody has come, the Revelation says somebody is coming
again. All of the
scriptures are about the Lord Jesus Christ.]
[Jacob is the son of Isaac and he has a twin brother
Esau. Jacob received all of
the inheritance that should have been given to his older brother Esau.
Esau became very angry and said he was going to kill Jacob after
their father died. So,
Jacob ran for his life and now he is in the wilderness all alone.
He sets up a rock for his pillow and falls asleep.]
Picture of a Sinner (vs 21) [-
Incidentally, this appears to be the place where Jacob got saved.
Jacob was not a godly man until after this event in his life.
Jacob declares in this passage of scripture,]
21 . . .
then shall the LORD be my God: ]
[Everyone needs to decide and choose that the Lord
is their God.]
Jacob Is A
Picture Of A Sinner Because,
Was Shrouded In Darkness (vs 11; 2 Cor 4.4; John 3.19-20)
[– And he lighted upon a
certain place, and tarried there all night, because the sun was set; . .
. - The sun had set and literally speaking Jacob was now in physical
darkness. However, the
Bible records it here for us that we might see figuratively speaking
that Jacob is in spiritual darkness.
The Bible indicates that the next day the sun arose and Jacob was
a changed man.]
[The darkness that Jacob was in reminds us of
the darkness that every lost sinner in this world is in.
The Bible says,]
4 In whom the god of this world
hath blinded the minds of them which believe not, lest the light of the
glorious gospel of Christ, who is the image of God, should shine unto
[Every man without the Lord Jesus is in
darkness. Some people like
that darkness because that darkness is more comfortable to them than the
light. Many of us have
known children that are afraid of the darkness and have thought, “Oh how
ridiculous.” But what is
more ridiculous a child afraid of the darkness or a man afraid of the
light. Jesus said,]
19 And this is the condemnation,
that light is come into the world, and men loved darkness rather than
light, because their deeds were evil. 20
For every one that doeth evil
hateth the light,
neither cometh to the light, lest his deeds should be reproved. ]
Was Surrounded By Desert (vs 11; Prov 13.15; Matt 11.28)
[– 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. – Can you imagine a place so
barren that the only thing you could find to sleep on was rocks?
If there is anything that Israel has a lot of its rocks.
Jacob was in a desert place.]
[Jacob was out there in the darkness with the
wilderness beasts around him and he is all alone and exposed to the
elements and the world around him.
He is alone physically and he is alone spiritually without God,
without hope, without peace.]
[Some people say, “Its hard to be a Christian.”
Think about Jacob out there all alone with rocks for his bed.
It’s hard not to be a Christian. The Bible says,]
15 Good understanding giveth
favour: but the way of transgressors
is hard. ]
[What could be harder than a stone for a
pillow? Jesus said,]
28 Come unto me, all
ye that labour and are
heavy laden, and I will give you rest.
29 Take my yoke upon you, and learn of me; for I am meek
and lowly in heart: and ye shall find rest unto your souls.
30 For my yoke
is easy, and my burden
is light. ]
[Have you ever heard a truely born again
Christian say, “I’m sorry that I ever gave my heart to the Lord Jesus
Christ.” You will likely
never hear any lost sinner say, “I wanna tell you how much the dear old
sweet devil means to me.”]
Was Sentenced With Death (vs 10; Gen 27.41) [–
And Jacob went out from
Beersheba, and went toward Haran. – The fact that
Esau wanted to kill Jacob is why he left and found himself in this dark,
41 And Esau hated Jacob because
of the blessing wherewith his father blessed him: and Esau said in his
heart, The days of mourning for my father are at hand; then will I slay
my brother Jacob.]
[Here is Jacob with the hounds of justice on
his trail. Here he is
picturing every unsaved sinner.
The sinners plight is death.
The Bible says,]
For the wages of sin
is death; but the
gift of God is eternal
life through Jesus Christ our Lord. ]
Picture of a Savior (vs 12; John 1.47-51) [–
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. – Jacob is
out there with a rock for his pillow and he dreamed of a ladder whose
bottom was on the earth and it went all the way up to heaven and God was
at the top of that ladder.
He also saw angels coming down and going up that ladder.
[The word translated ladder here is also translated
stairway, hence this ladder was a stairwell.
This should not be thought unusual since in the Navy a stairwell
is also called a ladder well.
A young man said to a young lady, “Last night I had a dream, and
I dreamed that I proposed to you.
What do you think that means?”
The young lady replied, “I think it means you have more sense
when you are asleep than you do when you are awake.”]
[This is just like Jacob, he had more sense when he
was asleep than he had when he was awake.
Because when he was asleep he had a glorious vision and saw this
ladder reaching all the way to heaven.
pictured the Lord Jesus Christ.]
47 Jesus saw Nathanael coming to
him, and saith of him, Behold an Israelite[Jacob]
indeed, in whom is no
[We know that latter in the Bible God will change
Jacobs name to Israel.
Also the name Jacob means deceiver, conniver, or beguiler.
So twice our Lord mentions Jacob here in this statement, which
sets the message Jesus is referencing.
Jesus then says,]
48 Nathanael saith unto him,
Whence knowest thou me? Jesus answered and said unto him, Before that
Philip called thee, when thou wast under the fig tree, I saw thee.
49 Nathanael answered and saith
unto him, Rabbi, thou art the Son of God; thou art the King of Israel.
50 Jesus answered and said unto
him, Because I said unto thee, I saw thee under the fig tree, believest
thou? thou shalt see greater things than these.
51 And he saith unto him,
I say unto you, Hereafter ye shall see heaven open, and the angels of
God ascending and descending upon the Son of man. ]
[In the Old Testament the angels are seen ascending
and descending upon a ladder.
In the New Testament Jesus said you will see the angels ascending
and descending upon me. In
the Old Testament we have a seed of truth hidden, in the New Testament
we have the doctrinal truth revealed.]
[Jesus is plainly saying that the Old Testament ladder
is an Old Testament prophecy of a New Testament Savior.
That ladder is a type of the Lord Jesus Christ.
Jesus is the only one that gives mankind access to the Heavenly
Father. Jesus Christ is the
link between heaven and earth.
Jesus is our connection with heaven.]
things about this ladder to heaven,]
Reach Of The Ladder (vs 12; John 14.6; 10.1) [-
And he dreamed, and behold a
ladder set up on the earth, and
the top of it
reached to heaven: . . . – We recall how that in the
account of the tower
of Babel men tried
to build a tower unto heaven and failed.
Remember how they sat and wept in the ruins of their tower of
blunders. You see every man
made effort is destined to fail.
No one can build into heaven.
Oh, people try, they have all kinds of false religions and man
made schemes but they will all fail and collapse.]
[There is only one ladder that will reach into
glory and heaven and that is the Lord Jesus Christ.
He reaches all the way to the top.
6 . . .
I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the
Father, but by me. ]
[So many people are trying to climb into heaven
by another way. But Jesus
1 Verily, verily, I say unto
you, He that entereth not by the door into the sheepfold, but climbeth
up some other way, the same is a thief and a robber. ]
There was a man who wanted to be at the top of the ladder.
He wanted to be a success so he sacrificed his family, and his
health so that he could achieve that goal.
Finally, he made it to the top and when he got there he realized
that his ladder was leaning on the wrong wall.]
[When you give yourself to the ladders of this
life and sacrifice everything for them, when you get to the top of your
ladder you will realize it is a short ladder and is leaning on the wrong
wall. Jesus is the only
ladder that reaches all the way up to heaven.]
Reliability Of The Ladder (vs 13) [–
And, behold, the LORD stood above
it, . . . – This means that Almighty God is watching over that
ladder. This is one way
that you can count on. The
mighty angels of God ascend and descend upon that ladder, because it is
the only reliable way to get to heaven.
This is God’s way, and this is the only way God watches over.]
Resources Of The Ladder (vs 12; Heb 1.13-14) [–
. . . and behold the angels of
God ascending and descending on it. – What are these angels of God
going up and down for? What
do angels do?]
13 But to which of the angels
said he at any time, Sit on my right hand, until I make thine enemies
thy footstool? 14 Are they
spirits, sent forth to minister for them who shall be heirs
[Angels are ministering spirits.
Angels are sent to minister to you.
Do you know that we have guardian angels?
Do you know that we have servant angels?
We have angels that are come to us and going for us back to the
Father. They are ascending
and descending this ladder.]
sends His resources to us by means of this ladder.
Not only is Jesus the way in which I go to God, but Jesus is the
way in which God comes to me.
God meets my needs through Jesus.
No angel comes down from God except he comes down by this ladder.
No angel goes back to heaven except he goes by this ladder.]
[Hence, not only is this a stairway to the
stars it is a stairway to the storehouse.
Everything we have and receive from God comes through the Lord
Riches Of The Ladder (vs 13-15; 1 Tim 2.5) [–
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;
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.
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. – Notice the many and bountiful riches that are
available because of this ladder.
[The Promises of God are in this ladder (Christ)
[The Presence of God is in this ladder (Christ)
[The Protection of God is in this ladder
(Christ) (vs 15)]
Testament type is a revelation of the link between heaven and earth.
there is one God, and
one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus; ]
[Jesus is not a
good way to heaven. Jesus
is not the best way to heaven.
Jesus is the only way to heaven.]
Picture of Salvation [– On this night Jacob came to know God
as his savior. Jacob knew
about God, but now he would have salvation through God.
How did this change happen?]
There Was A Consciousness Of God (vs 16; Rom10.8-13)[ –
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,
is this place!
this is none other but
the house of God, and this is
the gate of heaven. – Jacob before he placed his head upon that rock
yawned in the face of God and went to sleep.
So far as he knew God was 10,000 miles away.
But then after that vision he said God was in this place.
No one is ever saved until he reckons with the reality of God.
With this consciousness comes a holy reverence for God.]
[How close is God to you?]
8 But what saith it? The word is
nigh thee, even in thy
mouth, and in thy heart: that is, the word of faith,
which we preach;
[God is already in your heart.
How did he get in your heart?
Every time you hear a preacher speak the gospel message then
Christ is placed in your heart.
He is just waiting for you to believe in Him and confess Him.]
9 That if thou shalt confess
with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God
hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved.
10 For with the heart man
believeth unto righteousness; and with the mouth confession is made unto
salvation. 11 For the
scripture saith, Whosoever believeth on him shall not be ashamed.
12 For there is no difference
between the Jew and the Greek: for the same Lord over all is rich unto
all that call upon him. 13
For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.]
[If you ask Jesus to save you today, He will
There Was A Conversion To God (vs 18-21) [-
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.
19 And he called the name of
that place Bethel:
but the name of that city was
called Luz at the first.– Jacob was cognizant of God, he even
feared and trembled in God’s presence.
But that was not enough.]
[Notice in these verses the name
This name means separation.
When Jacob first came there he was separated from God, but now it
is named Bethel
meaning the house of God.
That howling wilderness has now become for Jacob the very house of God.
This was an incredible transformation for Jacob.
This is now the place of fellowship with God.
It is the place of communion with 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,
21 So that I come again to my
father's house in peace; then shall the LORD be my God: ]
[Some people believe that Jacob was making a
bargain with God, but the word “if” in this text can also mean “since.”
Hence Jacob was making a commitment to God based upon what God
had already promised to do.]
[Jacob was converted.
Not only was it a new morning he was a new man.
The sky was bluer and the earth was a sweeter green.
He had been saved and born again.
He was no longer separated from God but God was his God.]
There Was A Commitment Through God (vs 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. – This is the second reference to tithing in the
Bible. Jacob did not give
to get saved, he gave because he got saved.
That’s the nature of this transformation.
There was no law at this time that said Jacob had to tithe.
Jacob just wanted to give from his heart.
[Up until this time the moto of Jacob had been
“GET.” Now his moto will be
“GIVE.” The name Jacob
means getter, grabber, conniver.
But now his whole character was changed.
That’s what Jesus does in us.]
[Do you have a
Bethel, where the Lord Jesus Christ became your
ladder to ever lasting life and every resource of God?
Every body needs a Bethel.]
CrossRoads Baptist, Evening, November 8, 2009