Genesis 28 Expanded Bible (EXB)
Jacob Searches for a Wife
28 Isaac called Jacob and blessed him and commanded him [L and said to him], “You must not marry a ·Canaanite woman [L daughter of Canaan]. 2 ·Go [L Get up and go] to the house of Bethuel, your mother’s father, in ·northwestern Mesopotamia [L Paddan-aram; 25:20]. Laban, your mother’s brother, lives there. Marry one of his daughters. 3 May God Almighty bless you and ·give you many children [L make you fruitful and multiply you; 1:22], and may you become a ·group [assembly; congregation; company] of many peoples. 4 May he give you and your ·descendants [L seed] the blessing of Abraham so that you may ·own [possess] the land ·where you are now living as a stranger [L of your wandering/sojourn/alien status], the land God gave to Abraham.” 5 So Isaac sent Jacob to ·northwestern Mesopotamia [L Paddan-aram], to Laban the brother of Rebekah. Bethuel the Aramean was the father of Laban and Rebekah, and Rebekah was the mother of Jacob and Esau.
6 Esau ·learned [L saw] that Isaac had blessed Jacob and sent him to ·northwestern Mesopotamia [L Paddan-aram] to find a wife there. He also ·learned [L saw] that Isaac had commanded Jacob not to marry a ·Canaanite woman [L daughter of Canaan] 7 and that Jacob had ·obeyed [listened to] his father and mother and had gone to ·northwestern Mesopotamia [L Paddan-aram]. 8 So Esau saw that ·his father Isaac did not want his sons to marry Canaanite women [C the daughters of Canaan were bad/evil in the eyes of his father Isaac]. 9 Now Esau already had wives, but he went to Ishmael son of Abraham, and he married Mahalath, Ishmael’s daughter. Mahalath was the sister of Nebaioth.
Jacob’s Dream at Bethel
10 Jacob left Beersheba [21:14] and set out for Haran [11:31]. 11 When he came to a place, he spent the night there because the sun had set. He found a stone and laid his head on it ·to go to sleep [L and lay down in that place]. 12 Jacob dreamed that there was a ·ladder [or stairway; or ramp] resting on the earth and reaching up into heaven, and he saw ·angels [messengers] of God ·going up and coming down [ascending and descending on] ·the ladder [L it; John 1:51]. 13 Then Jacob saw the Lord standing above the ladder [28:12], and he said, “I am the Lord, the God of Abraham your grandfather, and the God of Isaac. I will give you and your ·descendants [L seed] the ·land [ground] on which you are now ·sleeping [lying; 12:1–3]. 14 Your ·descendants [L seed] will be as many as the dust of the earth [13:16]. They will spread west and east, north and south, and all the ·families [clans] of the earth will ·be blessed [or bless themselves] through you and your ·descendants [seed]. 15 I am with you and will ·protect [guard] you everywhere you go and will bring you back to this land. I will not ·leave [abandon; forsake] you until I have done what I have promised you.”
16 Then Jacob woke from his sleep and said, “Surely the Lord is in this place, but I did not know it.” 17 He was afraid and said, “This place frightens me! It is surely the house of God and the gate of heaven.”
18 Jacob rose early in the morning and took the stone ·he had slept on [L which was under his head] and set it up ·on its end [L as a pillar; 31:13, 45; 35:14, 20; Ex. 24:4; C a practice later prohibited because similar to Canaanite religion (Ex. 23:24; 34:13; Deut. 12:3)]. Then he poured olive oil on the top of it. 19 ·At first [Formerly], the name of that city was Luz, but Jacob named it Bethel [C “house of God”].
20 Then Jacob ·made a promise [L vowed a vow]. He said, “I want God to be with me and to ·protect [guard] me on this journey. I want him to give me food to eat and clothes to wear 21 so I will be able to return ·in peace [or safely] to my father’s house. If the Lord does these things, he will be my God. 22 This stone which I have set up ·on its end [L as a pillar] will be the house of God. And I will give God ·one-tenth [a tithe] of all he gives me.”