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Jacob’s vow: making a deal with God

In times of uncertainty or doubt, many of us have prayed, “Lord, IF You will ___(fill in the blank), THEN I will ___(fill in the blank.)” That’s what Jacob did.
This son of Isaac and twin brother of Esau didn't know if God would be with him the way He had been with Jacob’s grandfather Abraham. He’d undoubtedly heard his family’s stories of faith, but maybe he thought that tricking his brother and his father had put him on the outs with God.
Now on the run from his brother’s wrath, Jacob fled toward his mother’s family many, many miles away. Alone and in new terrain, he made a vow to God in this prayer:


Genesis 28:20-22 from the King James Version of the Bible
and the Book of KJV prayers
And Jacob vowed a vow, saying, If God will be with me, and will keep me in this way that I go, and will give me bread to eat, and raiment to put on, So that I come again to my father's house in peace; then shall the Lord be my God: And this stone, which I have set for a pillar, shall be God's ho…

Blessing, vow, pledge, and promise

“Isaac called for Jacob, blessed him, and said, “Do not marry a Canaanite woman but hurry to the house of your grandfather in Paddan-aram and marry one of your uncle Laban’s daughters. May God Almighty bless you with many children, and may your descendants become many nations. May God pass on to you and your descendants the blessings promised to Abraham, and may you possess this land where you now live as a stranger, for God gave this land to Abraham,” Genesis 28:1-4.

After getting the family blessing he had deceptively wangled from his twin brother Esau, Jacob obeyed his father and set off on a journey of a few hundred lonely miles to find a wife.

And so, “Jacob left Beersheba and traveled toward Haran. Before sunset he arrived at a good place to stop for the night and set up camp. When he found a stone for a pillow, Jacob lay down to sleep, and as he slept, he dreamed of a ladder (or stairway) reaching from earth to heaven with angels of God going up and down. At the top of the ladd…

Praying for purpose, praying for peace

“This records the family of Isaac, the son of Abraham: When Isaac was forty years old, he married Rebekah, the daughter of Bethuel the Aramean from Paddan-aram and sister of Laban the Aramean. Isaac pleaded with the Lord on behalf of his wife because she had no children. The Lord answered Isaac’s prayer, and Rebekah became pregnant with twins. When the two children struggled in her womb, she asked the Lord why this was happening, and the Lord told her, ‘The sons in your womb will become two rival nations. One nation will be stronger than the other, and your older child will serve the younger,” Genesis 25:19-23.

Questions: With whom or what do you struggle? Is your old self struggling with your new self in God?

Prayer: Dear Heavenly Father, looking back at old ways and looking forward to new is like carrying twin thoughts that fight within me! Help me, Lord, to move forward into Your plan and purpose for my life with no fears and no regrets. Thank You for giving Your prayers, Your guid…

Getting very specific in prayer

Background: Long after Abraham prayed for God to favor Ishmael, he and his wife Sarah brought up their son Isaac to become the heir whom God had named. Sometime before the young man turned thirty, his mother died and was buried in a cave that Abraham had purchased at full price near Mamre (also known as Hebron) in the land of Canaan. Despite the family ties to that area, Abraham did not want his son to marry a Canaanite woman. He was so adamant in fact that he made his chief servant swear to go to Abraham’s homeland and find Isaac a wife among their own kin.

The servant gave no objection to the request but showed concern for the success of his mission. When he asked Abraham what to do if no woman wanted to come home with him to meet Isaac, his master said, “The LORD God of heaven will send an angel before you,” Genesis 24:7-8. Abraham further assured the man that, if God did not take care of everything, the chief servant would be released from his oath. The man promised to obey his ma…

God and Abraham pray for Ishmael and Isaac

Background: Again and again, God promised Abram he would become the father of many nations, yet this usually strong man of faith and his wife, Sarai, made their own arrangements in order to make God’s promise come true! As Genesis 16 records the story, Sarai urged Abram to follow the custom of the day and have children with her maid Hagar so the couple would have an heir. When this had been accomplished and Hagar knew she had a child on the way, she began to look down on her mistress, which did not go over too well with Sarai.

In Genesis 17 God gave Abram a new name – Abraham, which means the father of many. God also changed Sarai’s name to Sarah, which, interestingly, means princess. With the blessing of God resting on Abraham, however, God could not and did not forget Hagar.

When Sarah mistreated the servant girl, Hagar ran away until an angel of the Lord came to her and told her to go home and submit to Sarah’s authority.

“And the angel said, ‘You will give birth to a son, and you…