Embracing Your Birthright: Genesis 25:29-31
“29) When Jacob had cooked stew, Esau came in from the field and he was famished; 30) and Esau said to Jacob, “Please let me have a swallow of that red stuff there, for I am famished.” Therefore his name was called Edom. 31) But Jacob said, “First sell me your birthright.” 32) And Esau said, “Behold, I am about to die; so of what use then is the birthright to me?” 33) And Jacob said, “First swear to me”; so he swore to him, and sold his birthright to Jacob. 34) Then Jacob gave Esau bread and lentil stew; and he ate and drank, and rose and went on his way. Thus Esau despised his birthright.” Genesis‬ ‭25:29-34‬
It is a sad story. As the oldest son, Esau had an amazing birthright. It was up to him to carry on the family legacy. But he was constantly distracted. He refused to accept responsibility or work on personal growth and discipline. Rather than learning how manage the family estate, he was constantly wandering about the wilderness hunting and gathering. He was an immoral recluse drifter. He despised his birthright and sold it for a single meal. (See also Hebrews 12:14-17)
So how does his story relate to us today. At the moment of salvation every believer is given an amazing birthright “in Christ.” We are blessed with all spiritual blessings in heavenly places “in Christ.” But instead of embracing them and building on them, we often act more like Esau and stuff our lives with fruitless distractions.
Let’s take a moment and look seven ways we are all tempted to despise our birthright “in Christ.” The Old Testament prophets were spellbound by what was coming as our blessings in Christ. (1 Peter 1:10-12) Yet we so often take them for granted. I am sure you can add to this list, but it is a good starting Point:
We despise our birthright when we fail to embrace the sanctifying and transforming power of the gospel in our lives. (Hebrews 12:14-17) We despise our birthright when we go to the cross for pardon but fail to go to Pentecost for power. (Acts 1:4-8, John 14&16) We despise our birthright when we fail to study the Bible for our daily manna and spiritual food. (2 Timothy 3:17-17, *Proverbs 13:13) We despise our birthright when we marginalize prayer and seldom appear before the throne of Grace. (Hebrews 4:14-16) We despise our birthright when we embrace carnal and worldly activities above personal fellowship and communion with God. (1 John 1:3-7, 2:15-17) We despise our birthright when we fail to set our mind on things above or embrace the full glories of our salvation. (Colossians 3:1-2; Ephesians 1:18-23) We despise our birthright when we fail to be an active part of the Body of Christ and participant in a good local church. (I Corinthians 12)
Don’t be an Esau, embrace every blessing that is part of your birthright “in Christ.”
Daily Bible Commentary By Terry Baxter: Cofounder of GoServ Global