So Israel took his journey with all that he had, and came to Beersheba, and offered sacrifices to the God of his father Isaac. Then God spoke to Israel in the visions of the night, and said, “Jacob, Jacob!” And he said, “Here I am.” (Genesis 46:1-2)
Before departing for Egypt, Jacob went to Beersheba and offered sacrifices to God. This was the same place where God had appeared to Abraham and where his father, Isaac, had built an altar. In fact, at one point, Isaac had intended to go on down to Egypt but was told not to. Perhaps this is why Jacob was troubled about what to do and that is why he first stopped at this important place. Apparently, Jacob was looking for some confirmation that going to Egypt was the Almighty’s plan for him. He wanted to be certain that this journey was equivalent to what Abraham had been told in Genesis 15.
The Bible uses the term “night vision” or “vision of the night” which is said to imply impending darkness –- in other words, a gloominess. Yet, God visits him in this vision and tells him not to fear. All that was occurring was part of God’s plan. In fact, it is in Egypt that Israel will become a great nation. They may have gone into Egypt with only 70 souls but would come out numbered in the millions. Jacob was given this assurance in the midst of his angst and his “visions of the night.”
The point for us today is to remember that darkness, and even gloominess, is often the prelude to the light and joy that comes with the revelation of God’s plan for our lives. Even as we enter into uncertain territory in precarious times, we have the assurance that God doesn’t allow anything to touch our lives unless it works toward His objective for us and His people. We shouldn’t despair if our world appears dark and gloomy for as the Psalmist said, “Weeping may tarry for the night, but joy comes with the morning.” (Psalm 30:5)
Blessings and Shalom,