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Summary: You can have all the blessings, material benefits, and all the land and children, but if you do not have God’s presence you are nothing.

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Introduction: Ill: Three block-buster movies in the early 90’s that followed a boy that seemed to always be easily forgotten everywhere he went, and usually had to face bad guys all alone.

Background

• Review Genesis 25; twins yet born completely opposite (lost/saved)

• Review the birthright and the blessing fiasco

• We are going to see this evening that you can have all the blessings, material benefits, and all the land and children, but if you do

not have God’s presence you are nothing!

• Jacob has been sent away by father and mother as a fugitive (500+ miles). Jacob has been blessed a second time (28:3-4), but

he carries no wealth, power, influence…He journeys alone, frustrated, depressed, weak (77 yrs old), anxious, homesick….He is

traveling through rough, dry, and rocky terrain. As he thinks about all that has transpired, it is safe to say that Jacob feels alone,

stressed, and abandoned. He has the blessing and birthright, but they seem more like burdens than a blessings. And so with

these thoughts, Jacob lays his head on a rock and goes to sleep.

• In his sleep he will have a personal encounter with God, and encounter teach him about the omnipresence of God, and truth that

he has failed to hold dear. It is in this encounter where he will confess his ignorance and commit to live a changed life!

How to Overcome Ignorance:

I. Have an Awareness of God’s Conviction. “Surely the LORD is in this place,…”

1. The Dream: (10-12)

• A 70 year old fugitive, who has never been separated from his family, is now on the run, going to a new place. It is

through a dream that God meets with a very needy, homesick, heavy hearted man. God comes to him, he does not go

to God. Man may have a mental “understanding” of God, but man’s nature does not seek after God, we know only what

God reveals to us. God chose the instrument of a “dream”

• The ladder, angels descending from heaven to earth, preparing for their Master to speak. The throne room of heaven

opened, and God met with Jacob.

2. The Promise: (13-15)

• In God’s reaffirming of His promises, He personal lets Jacob know that he has been chosen by God to carry his

blessing, despite his scheming.

1. I AM Jehovah….The God of your father & grandfather

2. I Am Owner of this land, and it will be yours

3. I Will bless your family to be large

4. I Am Always With You

5. I will bring you back to this land

II. Have the Humility for Personal Confession. “I did not know…”

• Ill: A little boy’s note at school “Take all the cookies, God is watching the apples”

• What would cause Jacob to admit this? Was Jacob a pagan? Jacob was a godly man, he believed in God. The trouble with

Jacob was not believing in God (mental), but rather he did not believe God could manage without his help.

• Jacob is not claiming to “ignore God” but rather was not aware of God’s abiding presence.

1. Common misunderstanding about God’s presence: (What Jacob may of thought)

• God is only in paradise – Look around, this is no place for God (God forsaken place)- desert, rocks, Beltashazzar’s

party, Neb. Fiery furnace, Jonah’s whale….

• God is present with those who have stuff – Jacob had no great wealth, possession…in a sense he was a homeless

man.

• God is at home, parents, homeland – Jacob may have thought he was leaving God’s presence with his parents.

• God is found at a particular location – at an altar, temple, building

2. Common hindrances for recognizing God’s presence:

• Spiritual deadness – as a result of moral failure, trickery, deceit, self gratification. Deadness is caused by sin,

moral failure. (Rom 8:13) Sin dims my vision of God.

• Spiritual dullness - Not having a continuous walk with God. G Cambell Morgan – “If a man’s spirit is dull, inactive,

or dead, he cannot find God.

• The unconsciousness of God sees only what is near (horizontal, not vertical). Whenever the people lose vision of

God, the people perish.

3. Application: When Jacob awoke, he did not shake off his dream as a bad meal, stress, or an overactive imagination;

God’s presence changed his life. God no longer was the “God of his fathers” but now “My God”.

• Do you experience God’s presence? Or do you limit God’s presence to certain places or activities? This is

common even with Christians.

III. Have the Determination For Radical Commitment. (28:18-22)

1. To be conscious of God is immediately to have a new interpretation of life.

• This is awesome! Life is worth living, a greater purpose for life. God breathed purpose into a soul whose purpose had

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