There is no accounting for what drives people. Isaac waited a quarter century to have sons. When his sons arrived, there was a clear distinction; Esau was a burley–“Man’s man” and Jacob was an inside guy. God told Isaac and Sarah–Jacob would continue the lineage–but, Isaac loved Esau. He loved his talent, his rugged style and the yummy food he made. So much so, that Esau clearly felt confident he had his future made. He became cocky–self absorbed–his God was his stomach.
Esau felt like the rules were not made for him; so, when Jacob offered him a nice dinner for the family birthright–well, there was no question that he would take the soup. Esau was all about now. He worried about his next meal, his next hunt and his next desire–long term thought was simply not a part of his routine. When Jacob traded him the soup for birthright–it spoke volumes of the hearts of the men. Esau never desired the responsibility of continuing the family line–he only wanted to hunt and fill his stomach.
In our world, not much has changed. Most folks are like Esau–self-absorbed and self-reliant. Their concern is for today, for themselves and not for God. People admire their rugged style, their false bravado and the way they take care of themselves. The truth is–it takes an eternal perspective to see past the here and now. When people live for eternity–the world feels they are foolish, weird and out of touch with the times. Truth is, however, it is that perspective–that will change the world. We have to look beyond our personal needs and trust God for who we are and what we have. That is the only life that will leave a legacy. Those who live for now will only leave stuff and emptiness. Paul spoke of those people as the enemies of God in Philippians 3–“Their God is their stomach and they glory in their shame.” In short–Esau was not an enemy of his birthright, He was an enemy of God.
It brings to a head what Joshua said–“Choose this day whom you will serve…as for me and my house, we will serve the Lord!” Joshua 24:6
God Bless You
The boys grew up, and Esau became a skillful hunter, a man of the open country, while Jacob was content to stay at home among the tents. 28 Isaac, who had a taste for wild game, loved Esau, but Rebekah loved Jacob.
29 Once when Jacob was cooking some stew, Esau came in from the open country, famished. 30 He said to Jacob, “Quick, let me have some of that red stew! I’m famished!” (That is why he was also called Edom.)
31 Jacob replied, “First sell me your birthright.”
32 “Look, I am about to die,” Esau said. “What good is the birthright to me?”
33 But Jacob said, “Swear to me first.” So he swore an oath to him, selling his birthright to Jacob.
34 Then Jacob gave Esau some bread and some lentil stew. He ate and drank, and then got up and left.
So Esau despised his birthright.