Read Genesis 28
Focus on verse 16-17
In Proverbs we read, “The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom”. There are other places in scripture where the angel of the Lord appears to men whose response is almost without exception some degree of fear. As I compare this to the image of God that some modern day believers describe, I begin to wonder how accurate these really are. There is only one place in scripture that I can think of at the moment, where Jesus refers to the Father and “Abba” (somewhat equivalent to the English “daddy”) but is this sufficient support to suggest that I should consider the Almighty creator, who somehow encompasses three persons (Father, Son, And Spirit) and who rules the universe, as “my buddy”.
This is not to suggest that God is not loving toward us… and we can also err on the side of having an image of Him that is uncharacteristically stern, yet I rather suspect that if God really did appear to any of us in His glorified form our reaction would be more like that of the Apostle John who fell on his face like a dead man, rather than to run up to him and attempt to give Him a hug.
Then Jacob awoke from his sleep and said, “Surely the Lord is in this place, and I did not know it.” And he was afraid and said, “How awesome is this place! This is none other than the house of God, and this is the gate of heaven.” (v. 16-17)
In this passage where Jacob realizes that he may have been in the presence of God, the text says “And he was afraid and said, ‘How awesome is this place’!”
In our journey through life, I believe God is quite intentional about how and when He reveals more to us about Himself. How we respond to that revelation typically seems to be the key factor in whether we move closer to Him in relationship or further away. This event seems to be near the beginning of Jacob’s journey with the God of his fathers… his response at this point is to conclude that God is worthy of his deepest respect?