Genesis 25:30-34 says, “And Esau said to Jacob, Feed me, I pray thee, with that same red pottage; for I am faint: therefore was his name called Edom. And Jacob said, Sell me this day thy birthright. 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.”
I have thought a lot about Esau over the years: the birthright, the blessing, the stew, the sacrifice of long-term gain for short-term gratification, the desire to regain what was bartered, the tears, and the rejection.
It is not, as the saying goes, a pretty picture. I have also thought a lot about the fact that we face the same challenges as God’s children. Temptations arise because the devil is always active. The flesh acquiesces to the mind’s desire. The family name is sullied. Our birthright or blessing as His children is casually sold.
The “stew” may take a variety of forms: virginity is lost, a drink is taken, an angry, hurtful word is spoken, a fist strikes, gossip is repeated, a mate is forsaken, a child is abandoned, a lie is told, or the conscience is ignored. The damage done often cannot be undone.
Yes, we can be forgiven (1 John 1:8-10). Through repentance and confession, we can save ourselves from an eternity in hell, “Where their worm dieth not, and the fire is not quenched” (Mark 9:44, 46, 48). Thank God that is true. But remember two points. First, the consequences of our deeds may well last a lifetime — our lifetime and the lifetime of those we affect. Second, our Father deserves something better from His children.