Esau Despised His Birthright

 

  • Gen. 25:29-34
  • What was a “birthright?”
    • It was the right of the first-born (son) to a larger part of the inheritance, than what the other sons received. (Deut. 21:17)
      • “the advantages and privileges were that this baby became the object of special affection and would legally receive a double portion of his father’s estate.”
    • It not only entailed physical blessings, it also came with responsibilities:
      • “the responsibilities were that he was expected to assume the spiritual leadership of the family. He also was required to provide food, clothing, and other necessities for his mother until her death and all unmarried sisters until their marriage.”
  • Esau despised his birthright (vs. 34)
    • This goes deeper than just losing some material blessings, he lost his leadership position in the family both as a physical leader and a spiritual leader
      • He obviously had no interest in leading his family and this is shown in the New Testament (Heb. 12:16)
    • This birthright had no meaning to him until he realized exactly what he had lost (Gen. 27:34-38)
      • Once Isaac had blessed Jacob it could not be undone
    • He lost the honor in the family
      • Instead of being the master he was the servant (Gen. 27:37)
    • He was more focused on the physical here and now than the consequences of his actions
      • Sold it for a meal
      • Reflected the lackadaisical attitude that he had toward the birthright 
  • Christians have a birthright
    • When we come out of the waters of baptism we are born into Christ’s body and He has promised us a reward at the proper time.
    • We, like Esau, can lose the privileges given by this spiritual birthright
      •  We need to take pride in our birthright and not take it for granted as Esau did
      • Esau would have made a better decision if he had done this (Lk. 22:54-62)
    • The things that we can exchange for our birthrights are as meaningless as the bowl of stew
      • The pleasures of sin cannot even compare with our reward
    • We cannot lose our birthright except by our own doing
      • Esau gave Jacob the right to his birthright
      • Sin is the way that we can give up our birthright
    • When we sin we are letting Satan be the master instead of our servant
    • We will not realize what we have given up until it is too late to change it
      • Let us not take our birthright lightly as Esau did (Heb. 12:15-17)
  • Unlike Esau, Christians have the ability to regain our birthright
    • God has given us the ability to repent of our shortcomings (I John 9)
    • Esau was unable to reclaim his birthright but we have a Savior that died for our sins so that we may have a birthright