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Parashat Vayetze “And he went out”
3 DEC 2011
Genesis 28:10 opens, “And Jacob departed from Beersheba and went toward Haran.” Jacob now has begun a journey of exile from his parents and homeland fleeing from his brother Esau. Twenty years later, his exile ends, and again he is fleeing, but this time from an angry father-in-law (Laban).
Bereshit 28:12 begins with Jacob dreaming about a ladder where angels ascend and descend. While viewing this, HaShem speaks to him and gives him a prophetic promise. He first introduces himself, stating, “I am the GOD of Abraham, your father, and GOD of Isaac. The ground upon which you are lying, to you will I give it, and to your descendents. (14) Your offspring shall be as the dust of the earth, and you shall spread out powerfully westward, eastward, northward and southward. And all the families of the earth shall bless themselves by you and your offspring. Behold I am with you, I will guard you wherever you go, and I will return you to this soil, for I will not forsake you until I will have done what I have spoken about you.”
Here we have seen that GOD is telling Jacob that where his head is, the land will be his. His descendents will be as the dust of the earth, and they will be a blessing to the nations.
We, who are called by His name, have also been given promises of never being forsaken. ‘I will not in any way fail you, nor give you up, nor leave you without support. [I will] not [I will] not [I will] not in any degree leave you helpless nor forsake nor let [you] down (relax my hold on you)! [Assuredly not!]’ (Hebrews 13:5, see also Joshua 1:5).
So as I see it, GOD is the One who has given us life eternal, the One who will not forsake us, the One who will not give us scorpions (Luke 11:12). He will give us instead the power to trample serpents and scorpions, and nothing in any way shall harm us (Luke 10:19). Yes, our GOD, the GOD of Jacob, is the same yesterday, today and tomorrow. We should never fear that He will leave us, or forsake us. Just as He promised to keep Jacob safe and bring him back home, so will GOD keep His promises to us and bring us back home. So shall we be with our GOD forever.
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