I don’t know about you, but I’m not me when I’m hungry. Call it grumpy or call it a straight up Snickers commercial, but when my belly growls so do I. At that point, I just want to eat. I don’t want to work, I don’t want to have a delightful conversation with you…I just want sustenance. I’m not talking about a mere twinge of hunger. I’m talking all out low blood sugar to the point of passing out type of hunger. Just make me a sandwich. Wait patiently as I get a few bites in me, then tell me about your day.
“Once when Jacob was cooking some stew, Esau came in from the open country, famished. He said to Jacob, “Quick, let me have some of that red stew! I’m famished!” Jacob replied, “First sell me your birthright.” “Look, I am about to die,” Esau said. “What good is the birthright to me?” But Jacob said, “Swear to me first.” So he swore an oath to him, selling his birthright to Jacob. 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.”- Genesis 25:29-34
At first glance this passage seems a bit odd. Why would God choose to place in Scripture a scene of two brothers arguing over lentil stew? But if we dive deeper into this story we see just how valuable this tidbit of information is. In those days, the birthright honored the rights or privileges of the family’s firstborn son. The firstborn son would assume the authority and responsibility of the father when the father died. This birthright could also be passed on to a younger son under the right circumstance. The recipient of the birthright inherited twice as much as his siblings. Go a step further and we see the birthright of a king’s firstborn son included his succession to the throne.
Puts it into a more clear perspective now doesn’t it? For Esau to trade his inheritance for a bowl of stew now seems worthy of some reflection.
As Christians, we have an inherited “birthright” status through Jesus Christ as the firstborn Son of God. “So you are no longer a slave, but God’s child; and since you are his child, God has made you also an heir.”- Galatians 4:7.
Being an heir as God’s child is not something to be taken lightly. I’m not just talking about the status of salvation from hell when we slip into eternity. God has given us rights as his child on earth too…blessings, hope, privileges, and much more.
Satan wants us so distracted, so famished, and so desperate that we lose sight of God. What is that thing that will cause us so much exhaustion that we would be willing to sabotage our own inheritance or our own blessings? Is it a temptation, a sin, or pride? Is it a relationship or unforgiveness? Is it our excuses? Laziness?
This we must ask ourselves. Is our belly enticing us away from a life in God’s presence? Believe me when I tell you, Satan wants to snatch that status of inheritance right from our grasp. What better time to do that than when we are willing to hand it right to him?
Hold tight to your birthright. And make sure you have a snack handy at all times.