As he slept, he dreamed of a stairway that reached from earth to heaven. And he saw the angels of God going up and down on it.
At the top of the stairway stood the LORD, and he said, "I am the LORD, the God of your grandfather Abraham and the God of your father, Isaac. The ground you are lying on belongs to you. I will give it to you and your descendants.
Your descendants will be as numerous as the dust of the earth! They will cover the land from east to west and from north to south. All the families of the earth will be blessed through you and your descendants. a15
What's more, I will be with you, and I will protect you wherever you go. I will someday bring you safely back to this land. I will be with you constantly until I have finished giving you everything I have promised."
Then Jacob woke up and said, "Surely the LORD is in this place, and I wasn't even aware of it."
He was afraid and said, "What an awesome place this is! It is none other than the house of God -- the gateway to heaven!"
The next morning he got up very early. He took the stone he had used as a pillow and set it upright as a memorial pillar. Then he poured olive oil over it.
He named the place Bethel -- "house of God" -- though the name of the nearby village was Luz.
Then Jacob made this vow: "If God will be with me and protect me on this journey and give me food and clothing,
and if he will bring me back safely to my father, then I will make the LORD my God.
This memorial pillar will become a place for worshiping God, and I will give God a tenth of everything he gives me."
Scripture quotations marked NLT are taken from the Holy Bible, New Living Translation, copyright 1996. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers, Inc., Wheaton, Illinois 60189. All rights reserved. (New Living Translation - The Bible Online)