Jacob built two altars. The first was when he was fleeing from his enraged brother, Esau. It was in Bethel after an encounter with the Lord…his first awareness of God’s plans for him, and the beginning of his journey of faith…but God was yet the God of his Fathers and not his. The second altar was built 20 long years later when the Lord brought him back to the Promised Land. During those 20 years Jacob met his match in craftiness in his Father-in-law, he struggled with contentious and jealous wives, and he wrestled with God’s plan and purpose for his life. But in the end, when he encountered God again, Jacob was a changed man…and God so renamed him – Israel. For over the course of those 20 years Jacob, or now Israel, grew spiritually in his dependance and obedience to God. And so the second altar in Canaan he aptly named, “God, the God of Israel.” …for God was now his God.