The Resting Place
“And he took one of the stones of the place and put it under his head, and lay down in that place. And he had a dream.”
At this stage in his life, Jacob was not only a restless man, but a godless one. Though he valued spiritual things–the birthright of the family, and the blessing of his father–he used wicked means to attain a good end. He had not yet met his God, or received promises from him, or called upon his name. He had been a man run by lies and cunning; now he was a man on the run, pursued to the death by his murder-minded brother, Esau.
But here at Bethel–hungry, exhausted, and scared–Jacob lay his head down. The Hebrew says, “And he put a rock at his head place.” What a picture this is, and what a comfort, not only to Jacob, but to all his seed!
For the rock is Christ. And the great promise of our text is that for those who put him at their head place and rest their head upon him, they will dream. They will see God.
But how, exactly, does one rest his head upon Christ?
My answer is three-fold.
First, he rests completely upon the finished work of Christ–his righteous life and atoning death–for his justification and salvation, putting no trust whatsoever in his own works.
Secondly, he rests upon the Word of God, and especially the New Testament, saturating himself with its promises and commandments, so that he might every-increasingly live according to them.
Finally, he rests upon the Spirit of God, who brings the Word to life, enabling him not only to live by it, but even more importantly, to behold and delight in the One who is the great Ladder joining heaven and earth, the divine Head of all the angels, the very House of God, and the Gateway to our Father in heaven.
Yes, saints who know to rest their heads upon Christ will become what they so deeply desire to be, and what God created them to be: Dreamers, seers, and worshipers; men and women who know that, of a truth, God is in this place.