Genesis 25

Genesis 25

Genesis 25 Commentary

by Brad Boyles

In the music industry, most fans hate sellouts. According to Wikipedia, “selling out” is a common expression for the compromising of a person’s integrity, morality, authenticity, or principles in exchange for personal gain, such as money. In terms of music or art, selling out is associated with attempts to tailor material to a mainstream or commercial audience.

The reason this is so offensive is that it deals in compromises. Whether it be money or fame, selling out is one of the quickest ways to lose your dedicated fan base.

Here in Genesis 25, we see the true character of Esau in his behavior. Even though God chose Jacob before birth, the wisdom of God prevailed as Esau decided to “sell out.”

Genesis 25:29-34 HCSB  Once when Jacob was cooking a stew, Esau came in from the field exhausted.  30  He said to Jacob, “Let me eat some of that red stuff, because I’m exhausted.” That is why he was also named Edom.  31  Jacob replied, “First sell me your birthright.”  32  “Look,” said Esau, “I’m about to die, so what good is a birthright to me?”  33  Jacob said, “Swear to me first.” So he swore to Jacob and sold his birthright to him.  34  Then Jacob gave bread and lentil stew to Esau; he ate, drank, got up, and went away. So Esau despised his birthright.

Yes, it was not a great look for Jacob. He tricked his brother. However, Esau agreed, and with his agreement, he becomes the first human to coin the phrase YOLO. He doesn’t actually say it, but he comes pretty close! Since he knows he’s going to die one day anyway, he figures he might as well enjoy life right now. The soup looks good, so he takes it. In what is arguably the worst trade deal in human history, Esau gives up a lifelong blessing just to have some soup that smells good!

Additionally, Scripture tells us that Esau despised his birthright. He was flippant to spiritual and family matters. In one word, he was selfish.

What are the “birthrights” that we despise? Are we flippant with God on spiritual matters? Do we indulge ourselves with what we want now instead of holding out for a greater promise? These are all prickly questions to ponder.

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