|Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary|
28:16-19 God manifested himself and his favour, to Jacob, when he was asleep. The Spirit, like the wind, blows when and where it listeth, and God's grace, like the dew, tarrieth not for the sons of men. Jacob sought to improve the visit God had made him. Wherever we are, in the city or in the desert, in the house or in the field, in the shop or in the street, we may keep up our intercourse with Heaven, if it is not our own fault. But the more we see of God, the more cause we see for holy trembling before him.
Verse 16. - And Jacob awaked out of his sleep (during which he had seen and talked with Jehovah), and he said, Surely the Lord is in this place; and I knew it not. Jacob does not here learn the doctrine of the Divine omnipresence for the first time (Knobel), but now discovers that the covenant God of Abraham revealed himself at other than consecrated places (Rosenmüller, Keil, Lange, Murphy); or perhaps simply gives expression to his astonishment at finding that whereas he fancied himself alone, he was in reality in the company of God - so plus adeptum ease quam sperare ausus fuisset (Calvin).
Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible
And Jacob awaked out of his sleep,.... Which had been sweet unto him, and out of his dream, it being now over; and it having left such a weight upon his mind, and such an awe upon his spirits, it might tend the sooner to awaken him; what time it was is not said, perhaps it was in the middle of the night or towards morning, since after this it is said that he rose early in the morning:
and he said, surely the Lord is in this place, and I knew it not; God is everywhere, in a general way, upholding all things by his power, as he is immense and omnipresent; but here he was in a special sense, by some signal token of his presence; by a stream of light and glory darting from the heavens, hence Onkelos and Jonathan paraphrase it,"the glory of the Lord, and the glory of the majesty of the Lord;''and by the appearance of angels, and by the communications of his mind and will, and grace to Jacob, and that communion he had with him in his dream, of which he was very sensible: for, when he says, "I knew it not", the meaning is, he did not think or expect to meet with God in such a place; he did not know that God ever appeared anywhere but in the houses of his people, such as his father's house; and in the congregation of the faithful, or where the saints met for public worship, or where an altar was erected for God: though sometimes God is present with his people, and they are not sensible of it; as the church in Isaiah 41:10; and as Mary, when Christ was at her elbow, and she knew him not, John 20:13.
Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Bible Commentary
16. Jacob awaked out of his sleep—His language and his conduct were alike that of a man whose mind was pervaded by sentiments of solemn awe, of fervent piety, and lively gratitude (Jer 31:36).
Genesis 28:16 Parallel Commentaries
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