Genesis 28:10-22 · Jacob’s Dream at Bethel
Climbing the Right Ladder
Genesis 28:10-19a
by J. Howard Olds

How do you define success? I would like to talk about that today. Robert Raines says, “Success is a moving target. Every time I make my mark, somebody paints the wall,” go the lyrics of a country song. Oliver Wendell Holmes at age 90 said, “The secret to my success is that at an early age, I discovered I was not God.” Ralph Waldo Emerson said, “To leave the world a bit better, to know that even one life has breathed easier because you lived, that is to have succeeded.”

We catch up with our Old Testament hero, Jacob, today about 50 miles from home. Tricky Jake, with a little help from his mother, has successfully stolen his brother’s inheritance from their blind father. Now he is running for his life. At this place called Bethel, with a pillow made of stone, Jacob dreams about a ladder str…

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