I have been thinking about Monday’s post – about what has already been written concerning the fairness of the Jacob and Esau saga … and what we still have to learn. Before moving head-on into what's next, I thought of an illustration that might help us understand that the selling of the birthright and the stealing of the blessing were not two separate incidents; rather the latter (blessing) was a consequence of the former (birthright).
When I was in college, I had no idea what I wanted to do with my life. I was majoring in math, with an interest in business and architecture (at the time), so I started thinking about real estate. Being the student that I am, I decided to get my realtor’s license one summer. One evening, our teacher told us a story about her daughter buying a house. When her daughter went to move in, the previous owners had taken something considered a fixture (i.e. it went with the house) – a light fixture or all of the light bulbs, maybe the curtains, or a built-in cabinet … I can’t remember exactly, but I guess it doesn’t really matter. The point is that in selling their house, they didn’t realize that some things “go with the house.” In their ignorance, they took what they wanted when they left, but ignorance was no excuse. They had to bring it back when the new owner noticed and called them out on it.
Like the previous owners of the house, apparently neither Esau nor Isaac realized that in selling the family birthright to Jacob, the blessing went with it. The blessing was a fixture of the birthright, in a manner of speaking. I doubt that light bulbs or curtains would have kept the previous owners from selling the home I mentioned above, but if Esau had considered all that his birthright encompassed, he may have changed his mind as to its worth.
“Taste and see that the Lord is good!” (Ps 34:8). That verse has been on my mind all week. This past Sunday we talked about how Jacob deserved nothing from Isaac if he came in his own name. It was only by coming – not just in the name of Esau, but – as Esau that Jacob was blessed. This Sunday (instead of moving forward as I had originally planned), we’ll spend our time discussing specific parallels between Jacob approaching Isaac in Esau’s name and us approaching God in Jesus’ name. Inspired by Psalm 34:8, we’ll be using our five senses (smell, sight, taste, touch, sound) as a backdrop for our lesson.
At the end of Sunday's class, I mentioned reading Colossians 3:6-17. I'm actually going to recommend reading the Colossians passage alongside the account of Isaac giving the blessing (Genesis 27:1-29). In each passage, watch for ways the 5 senses are involved.
So excited for Sunday!! Can't wait to see you there.