Summary: Christ is our stairway to Heaven, the NT fulfillment to Jacob’s ladder.
The Stairway to God Gen. 28:12
Scrip. Reading: Gen 28:10-22
INTRO.: Summarize the story of Jacob’s life. He was a schemer and a climber. Traits he evidently learned from his mother. Her scheming get him in trouble and he is now fleeing for his life from his brother.
The stairway symbolizes his access to Heaven and God. The stairway pictures his ambition. Heaven is his goal. Angels stand for access to Heaven.
I. Our access to Heaven is in Christ. Jn. 1:51 He then added, "I tell you the truth, you shall see heaven open, and the angels of God ascending and descending on the Son of Man."
A. His ministry brought heaven to earth.
1. He came to serve men & women.
2. He came to earth, partook of death.
3. He came to reveal the Father.
B. His death & resur. Brings men to Heaven:
1. "I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.” Jn. 14:6
2. Because of Him, our citizenship is in Heaven.
3. "When he ascended on high, he led captives in his train and gave gifts to men. Eph. 4:8. A figure from military life.
C. All of this means we commune with God.
1. In prayer. Our prayers ascend thru Him.
2. Through indwelling of the Holy Spirit.
3. In service. - a two way staircase.
4. Lord’s Supper and other worship
5. The achievement of our ultimate goal - Heaven, is only available through Christ.
II. Things that join Heaven and earth:
A. Love and companionship in the Christian life:
1. “Dear friends, let us love one another, for love comes from God” I Jn. 4:7 Love a gift
2. Christian fellowship is important, then.
3. Loneliness is a terrible feeling. Love is heavenly.
B. Christian family:
1. "It is not good for the man to be alone.” Gen. 2:18
2. Modeled after the Church in its ideal state
3. Christ dwells in, blesses it.
4. It meets human needs. A taste of Heaven.
C. The Church:
1. God raised us up with Christ and seated us with him in the heavenly realms in Christ Jesus. Eph. 2:6
2. God dwells in the Church.
3. Human love is expressed in it.
4. Human needs are met in it.
III. Note Jacob’s reaction to Heavenly things:
A. Awe, fear. 16, 17
1. In our day, this is lacking.
2. We mustn’t take love for granted.
3. We shouldn’t disrespect family ties.
4. We dare not denigrate the Church.
B. Worship. V. 18
1. Oil is a symbol of sacrifice, worship.
2. Worship grows out of awe.
3. It is an act of gratitude.
4. We should not miss worship. It’s valuable.
C. Giving: v. 22
1. A natural expression of love.
2. If we love God, we will support His work.
3. Jacob recognized God’s ownership, generosity and responded generously.
CONC.: Jacob’s stairway showed the style and goal of his life. Where is life taking us, to Heaven, or . . .?
God showed Jacob his goal in life was not to be purely material. Up to this point, Jacob’s focus had been on acquiring power and wealth. No more.