Genesis 28:18 Parallel Verses [⇓ See commentary ⇓]

Genesis 28:18, NIV: "Early the next morning Jacob took the stone he had placed under his head and set it up as a pillar and poured oil on top of it."

Genesis 28:18, ESV: "So early in the morning Jacob took the stone that he had put under his head and set it up for a pillar and poured oil on the top of it."

Genesis 28:18, KJV: "And Jacob rose up early in the morning, and took the stone that he had put for his pillows, and set it up for a pillar, and poured oil upon the top of it."

Genesis 28:18, NASB: "So Jacob got up early in the morning, and took the stone that he had placed as a support for his head, and set it up as a memorial stone, and poured oil on its top."

Genesis 28:18, NLT: "The next morning Jacob got up very early. He took the stone he had rested his head against, and he set it upright as a memorial pillar. Then he poured olive oil over it."

Genesis 28:18, CSB: "Early in the morning Jacob took the stone that was near his head and set it up as a marker. He poured oil on top of it"

What does Genesis 28:18 mean? [⇑ See verse text ⇑]

The Lord has visited Jacob in a dream, giving to him the promises of Abraham, as well as reassurance that God will be with him and bring him back to the land of promise (Genesis 28:10–15). When he wakes up, Jacob is overwhelmed by what he identifies as the holiness of the place where he slept. He calls it "the house of God" and "the gateway to heaven" (Genesis 28:16–17).

Now Jacob commemorates the holiness of this place. He takes the stone where his head rested during his dream and sets it up as a pillar. This might mean that Jacob took what was once a long, flat-laying stone and stood it upright on end. He pours oil on the top of the stone as part of this ceremony. This stone should not be confused with an altar. Jacob's marker here is a post or standing stone, an indication of this holy place which Jacob will formally name in the next verse.