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Thursday, September 13 2018
A Bible Journey, 28: The Stairway To Heaven Dream
"And he dreamed ... the top of it reached to heaven: and behold the angels of God ascending and descending on it"
The Messianic line, beginning with Abraham, happened in a miraculous way. Sarah, Rebekah and Rachel, the wives of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob/Israel, were all unable to have children, until such time that the LORD (see The Real Jesus: The Word Of The LORD God) made it happen (for Sarah, see Genesis 18:9-14; for Rebekah, see below; for Rachel, see Genesis 30:1-2,22-24). In the case of Rebekah, Isaac's prayer for her was answered with twins - troublesome twins.
"25:21 And Isaac intreated the LORD for his wife, because she was barren: and the LORD was intreated of him, and Rebekah his wife conceived. 25:22 And the children struggled together within her; and she said, If it be so, why am I thus? And she went to enquire of the LORD.
Jacob had bested firstborn Esau for his birthright and then his blessing (see A Bible Journey, 27: The Blessing And Birthright From Esau To Jacob). The predictable result was that "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."
"27:41 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.
With Rebekah's further management of the family structure, "Isaac sent away Jacob: and he went to Padanaram unto Laban, son of Bethuel the Syrian, the brother of Rebekah, Jacob's and Esau's mother."
"28:1 And Isaac called Jacob, and blessed him, and charged him, and said unto him, Thou shalt not take a wife of the daughters of Canaan. 28:2 Arise, go to Padanaram, to the house of Bethuel thy mother's father; and take thee a wife from thence of the daughters of Laban thy mother's brother. 28:3 And God Almighty bless thee, and make thee fruitful, and multiply thee, that thou mayest be a multitude of people; 28:4 And give thee the blessing of Abraham, to thee, and to thy seed with thee; that thou mayest inherit the land wherein thou art a stranger, which God gave unto Abraham. 28:5 And Isaac sent away Jacob: and he went to Padanaram unto Laban, son of Bethuel the Syrian, the brother of Rebekah, Jacob's and Esau's mother." (Genesis 28:1-5 KJV)
Esau heeded the Canaanite declaration. With no one else to marry however (Jacob had headed north to their uncle Laban in Syria - and all of their cousins there), Esau married cousins from the family of another uncle, Ishmael, the half-brother of Jacob and Esau's father Isaac. The result was that Jacob married maternal cousins, daughters of his mother's brother, while Esau married paternal cousins, daughters of his father's brother.
"28:6 When Esau saw that Isaac had blessed Jacob, and sent him away to Padanaram, to take him a wife from thence; and that as he blessed him he gave him a charge, saying, Thou shalt not take a wife of the daughters of Canaan; 28:7 And that Jacob obeyed his father and his mother, and was gone to Padanaram;
Esau did not set off in pursuit of Jacob, even though he knew where Jacob had gone i.e. "Esau saw that Isaac had blessed Jacob, and sent him away to Padanaram."
While on the long journey north to Syria, from the southernmost area of what, over four centuries later (i.e. after the Exodus from Egypt), would be known as "Israel," Jacob stopped for the night and had a dream of "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." Although the King James Version (and other translations) use the word "ladder," the actual Hebrew word, pronounced sool-lawm, means a mound with an upward path, as in a stairway. Interestingly, the word occurs only once in the entire Holy Bible - Jacob's "stairway to heaven" (see the Fact Finder question below for a detailed explanation).
"28:10 And Jacob went out from Beersheba, and went toward Haran.
When Jacob awoke, he knew that it had been more than just a dream. The next morning, Jacob "called the name of that place Bethel," dedicating himself to the LORD.
"28:16 And Jacob awaked out of his sleep, and he said, Surely the LORD is in this place; and I knew it not.
It became then a significant place in Bible history. The LORD would rename Jacob as "Israel" upon his return from Syria, 20 years later, to that same area.
"28:20 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, 28:21 So that I come again to my father's house in peace; then shall the LORD be my God: 28:22 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." (Genesis 28:20-22 KJV)
Fact Finder: What did Jacob's famous "stairway" to heaven really look like? Was it a stairway? Or a ladder? Or an embankment?
This Day In History, September 13
585 BC: Lucius Tarquinius Priscus, the king of Rome (see also The Politics Of Rome), defeated the Sabines, an Italic tribe of ancient Italy.
509 BC: The pagan temple of Jupiter ("enlightened" scientists of the modern world named a planet after that pagan god) on Rome's Capitoline Hill (see also Israel In History and Prophecy: Aelia Capitolina) was dedicated on the ides of September (the term ides was used for the 15th day of the Roman months of March, May, July and October, and the 13th day of the other months).
81: The Roman Emperor Titus (reigned 79-81) died at age 42. As a military commander before succeeding his father Vespasian, it was Titus who conducted the destruction of Jerusalem and the Temple in 70 A.D. (see What Did Jesus Christ Say About Those Stones? and The Roman Emperors: Vespasian and The Roman Emperors: Titus).
122: Construction began of Hadrian's Wall in Britain during the time the island was under Roman occupation. Named after the emperor Hadrian (reigned 117-138), parts of the 120 kilometer (75 mile) wall remain visible today. Roman legions were occupying Britain at the same time that they occupied the land of Israel when Christ was crucified (see A History Of Jerusalem: Hadrian and Simon bar Kokhba and Legions Of Men And Angels).
335: The Roman Emperor Constantine consecrated Rome's "Church of the Holy Sepulchre" in Jerusalem. Constantine was the creator of the Papacy and numerous of the Church of Rome's doctrines, most of which are also perpetuated by the "Protestant" churches (see Constantine's Crusades In History And Prophecy and A History Of Jerusalem: Constantine and Muhammad).
533: The Battle of Ad Decimium, near Carthage in North Africa. General Belisarius of the Byzantine Empire defeated Gelimer and the Vandals (the term "vandalism" originated from the ancient Vandals who looted cities that they conquered).
1321: Italian playwright Dante Alighieri died. His farce Divine Comedy was the inspiration for much of the Vatican's development of the false doctrine of an ever-burning hell fire (see The Lake Of Fire Into An Ocean Of Fire - When?) and the non-existent Purgatory.
1515: King Francis of France battled the Swiss army under Cardinal Matthias Schiner at Marignano in northern Italy.
1549: Pope Paul III ended the first session of the Council of Bologna.
1609: Henry Hudson entered what would later be named New York harbor and claimed the area for Holland (Hudson was working for the Dutch at the time).
1759: The Battle of The Plains of Abraham, fought at the western edge of Quebec City, overlooking the St. Lawrence River. The English under James Wolfe, 32, defeated the French under the Marquis de Montcalm, 47, ending the "French and Indian Wars" and settling the political future of Canada. Both leaders were killed. The place is named for Abraham Martin, a ship's pilot who owned part of the land.
1788: New York City (both the city and the state were originally named after England's 17th century Duke of York, James Stuart, who became King James II of England in 1685) was declared the first federal capital of the U.S.
1922: The highest recorded shade temperature, 58 degrees Celsius / 136 degrees Fahrenheit, was recorded at Al Aziziyah, Libya.
1941: Elias Disney, the Canadian father of Walt Disney (his mother was a German immigrant), died at age 82.
1942: During the Second World War (1939-1945), the German army began its all-out attack on Stalingrad against stiff Soviet resistance (see Russia Or Europe - Who Has Been The Invader?).
1961: NASA launched into orbit, and later recovered, an unmanned Project Mercury capsule in preparation for the first U.S. manned orbital flight (the Russians were the first to launch a man into space - Yuri Gagarin, earlier that year, on April 12 1961), which took place the next February by John Glenn (Glenn was the third human to orbit the earth).
1991: Russia and the U.S. agreed to cut off arms supplies to the warring tribes in Afghanistan (both took their turn at invading and attempting to install puppet regimes Afghanistan - Russia in 1979, the U.S. in 2001).