Jacob left Beersheba and started out for Haran.
He reached a certain place and stopped for the night. The sun had already set. He took one of the stones there and placed it under his head. Then he lay down to sleep.
In a dream he saw a stairway standing on the earth. Its top reached to heaven. The angels of God were going up and coming down on it.
The LORD stood above the stairway. He said, "I am the Lord. I am the God of your grandfather Abraham and the God of Isaac. I will give you and your children after you the land on which you are lying.
They will be like the dust of the earth that can't be counted. They will spread out to the west and to the east. They will spread out to the north and to the south. All nations on earth will be blessed because of you and your children after you.
"I am with you. I will watch over you everywhere you go. And I will bring you back to this land. I will not leave you until I have done what I have promised you."
Jacob woke up from his sleep. Then he thought, "The LORD is certainly in this place. And I didn't even know it."
Jacob was afraid. He said, "How holy this place is! This must be the house of God. This is the gate of heaven."
Early the next morning Jacob took the stone he had placed under his head. He set it up as a pillar. And he poured oil on top of it.
He named that place Bethel. But the city used to be called Luz.
Then Jacob made a promise. He said, "May God be with me. May he watch over me on this journey I'm taking. May he give me food to eat and clothes to wear.
May he do as he has promised so that I can return safely to my father's home. Then you, Lord, will be my God.
This stone I've set up as a pillar will be God's house. And I'll give you a tenth of everything you give me."