So Isaac called for Jacob, blessed him, and said, "Do not marry any of these Canaanite women.
Instead, go at once to Paddan-aram, to the house of your grandfather Bethuel, and marry one of your uncle Laban's daughters.
May God Almighty bless you and give you many children. And may your descendants become a great assembly of nations!
May God pass on to you and your descendants the blessings he promised to Abraham. May you own this land where we now are foreigners, for God gave it to Abraham."
So Isaac sent Jacob away, and he went to Paddan-aram to stay with his uncle Laban, his mother's brother, the son of Bethuel the Aramean.
Esau heard that his father had blessed Jacob and sent him to Paddan-aram to find a wife, and that he had warned Jacob not to marry a Canaanite woman.
He also knew that Jacob had obeyed his parents and gone to Paddan-aram.
It was now very clear to Esau that his father despised the local Canaanite women.
So he visited his uncle Ishmael's family and married one of Ishmael's daughters, in addition to the wives he already had. His new wife's name was Mahalath. She was the sister of Nebaioth and the daughter of Ishmael, Abraham's son.
Meanwhile, Jacob left Beersheba and traveled toward Haran.
At sundown he arrived at a good place to set up camp and stopped there for the night. Jacob found a stone for a pillow and lay down to sleep.
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)