Read Genesis 25

Highlights:

Abraham dies. Isaac, Rebekah and their twin sons, Jacob and Esau. God reveals their weaknesses, failures, and blessings.

And Esau said, Behold, I am at the point to die: and what profit shall this birthright do to me? And Jacob said, Swear to me this day; and he sware unto him: and he sold his birthright unto Jacob. Then Jacob gave Esau bread and pottage of lentiles; and he did eat and drink, and rose up, and went his way: thus Esau despised his birthright (Gen. 25:32-34).

Isaac's marriage, like Abraham's, was a long time without children. The seed of the promise was to be prayed for from the Lord, that it might not be regarded merely as a fruit of nature. But Isaac received and recognized it as a gift of grace. When Rebekah conceived, the children struggled together in her womb. When she gave birth, there were twins; the firstborn was Esau and the second Jacob.

Esau revealed his lack of interest in spiritual things when he said: Behold, I am at the point to die: and what profit shall this birthright do to me? (25:32-34). Esau could not have been referring to being at the point of death because of missing one meal. If he were really starving, he could have easily asked either of his two Canaanite (Hittite) wives to prepare a meal for him. Obviously, he had no concern for the things of God. Later Scripture called him a profane (godless) person. Lest there be any fornicator, or profane person, as Esau, who for one morsel of meat sold his birthright (Heb. 12:16).

The family birthright included, among other things, the sacred position of spiritual leadership of the family, to be the priest of the family and to stand between the Most High and the rest of the household. The priest of the family received divine communications and led the family to execute the divine will of God. He was to be heir to the covenant between God and Abraham and his descendants. The birthright was a link in the line of descent through which Messiah was to come (Num. 24:17-19).

Though much maligned by Esau and others, the fact is that Jacob purchased the Abrahamic covenant from Esau for what Esau thought it was worth. In sharp contrast with Esau, Jacob was a plain man, dwelling in tents (Gen. 25:27). The Hebrew word for plain is the same word translated in other Scripture as perfect, upright, undefiled; so the word plain refers to Jacob's character Jacob was a man of God. God declares twice: Jacob have I loved, but Esau have I hated (Rom. 9:13; Mal. 1:2-3). And David records: The Lord hath chosen Jacob unto Himself, and Israel for His peculiar treasure (Ps. 135:4).

How many today are like Esau, choosing to gratify fleshly cravings, and disregard God's will in their lives until it is too late? Then they find fault with the people of God and blame their failure on someone else! When God calls his children to a task, He intends for it to be done according to His will. There may be opposition that comes strongly against you. But God is doing this through you. So be strong in the Lord and finish the work you are called to do. Being confident of this very thing, that He which hath begun a good work in you will perform it until the day of Jesus Christ (Phil. 1:6).

Thought for Today:

It is not too late for us to impart godly spiritual values to our children or someone else's.

Christ Revealed:

As the spiritual Seed that would bless all the nations of the earth (Gen. 26:4). Now to Abraham and his Seed were the promises made. . . . as of one . . . which is Christ (Gal. 3:16).

Word Studies:

26:8 sporting with, caressing, expressing love; 26:14 great store, a great number; 26:21 Sitnah, enmity, anger; 26:31 betimes, early; 27:36 supplanted me, taken my place; 27:42 as touching thee, concerning you.

Prayer Needs:

Pray for International Broadcasts in honor of Joyce & Bruce Rutherford • Staff: Karen Hawkins • Government Official: Rep. Michael E. Capuano (MA) • Country: Mexico (99.7 million) in North America • Major language: Spanish • Religious freedom • 89% Catholic; 6% Protestant; 3.5% None; 1.5% Other (Orthodox, Muslim, Jewish, Baha'i) • Prayer Suggestion: Pray with great faith and the Lord will answer (Matt. 21:22).

Optional Reading: Matthew 9

Memory Verse for the Week: Psalms 100:1-2