|Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary|
35:6-15 The comfort the saints have in holy ordinances, is not so much from Beth-el, the house of God, as from El-beth-el, the God of the house. The ordinances are empty things, if we do not meet with God in them. There Jacob buried Deborah, Rebekah's nurse. She died much lamented. Old servants in a family, that have in their time been faithful and useful, ought to be respected. God appeared to Jacob. He renewed the covenant with him. I am God Almighty, God all-sufficient, able to make good the promise in due time, and to support thee and provide for thee in the mean time. Two things are promised; that he should be the father of a great nation, and that he should be the master of a good land. These two promises had a spiritual signification, which Jacob had some notion of, though not so clear and distinct as we now have. Christ is the promised Seed, and heaven is the promised land; the former is the foundation, and the latter the top-stone, of all God's favours.
Verse 14. - And Jacob set up a pillar - the former pillar (Genesis 28:18) having probably fallen down and disappeared - in the place where he (God) talked with him (to commemorate the interview), even a pillar of stone. The setting up of pillars, according to Tuch a peculiarity of the Elohist, appears to have been a favorite practice of Jacob's: witness the first pillar at Bethel (Genesis 28:18), the pillar on Galeed (Genesis 31:45), the second pillar at Bethel (Genesis 35:14), the pillar over Rachel's grave (Genesis 35:20). And he poured a drink offering thereon. This is the first mention of those sacrificial libations which afterwards became so prominent in connection with the Mosaic ritual (Exodus 29:40, 41; Leviticus 23:13, 18, 37; Numbers 6:15; and elsewhere). Under the law the נֶסֶך- σπονδεῖον σπονδή (LXX.) libamentum, libamen (Vulgate); frankopfer (Luther) - consisted of a fourth part of a hin of wine, which was equal to about a third of a gallon. And he poured oil thereon - as he did on the previous occasion (Genesis 28:18, q.v.).
Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible
And Jacob set up a pillar in the place where he talked with him,.... He had set up a pillar in this place before he went to Padanaram, Genesis 28:18; and some, think this pillar is here referred to, and render the words, "had set up a pillar" (y); but as that was done thirty years ago, it is very likely it was demolished by the Heathens before this time, or was fallen to ruin, wherefore this must be at least a renewal or reparation of it: though it rather seems to be another pillar, and quite a new one, being set up in that very spot of ground, over or on which God had been talking with him: and the following account of it seems to confirm the same:
even a pillar of stone; made of several stones hewed and polished, and well put together; whereas the former was but a single stone, rude and unpolished, though it is probable it was one of these:
and he poured a drink offering thereon; of wine, of which drink offerings under the law were, thereby consecrating it to the worship and service of God. Aben Ezra says it was either of water or of wine, with which he washed it, and after that poured oil on it; and the Targum of Jonathan says, he poured a drink offering of wine, and a drink offering of water:
and he poured oil thereon; as he did before; See Gill on Genesis 28:18.
(y) "erexerat", Vatablus; "et statuerat", Piscator; so Aben Ezra.
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