A few years ago, we did a unit study on Little House in the Big woods. For a math project, we made blueberry pancakes and taste-tested several "flavors" of syrup (all imitation) plus one "real" maple syrup. We made bar graphs and recorded everyone's favorite. I was very surprised to find that all of the children but 1 (we had another family over for the fun) preferred the imitation syrup. I was a little flabbergasted. Afterall, real maple syrup was a very big treat. Upon reflection, it made sense. Our children had grown up knowing nothing else but imitation syrup, so-to them, syrup was supposed to taste the imitation way. It was what they were used to. It was was they liked. It was what their taste buds looked forward to.
"And when the boys grew up, Esau became a skillful hunter, a man of the field; but Jacob was a quiet man, dwelling in tents. Now Isaac loved Esau because he had a taste for game, but Rebekah loved Jacob. And Jacob cooked a stew. And Esau came in from the field, and he was faint. And Esau said to Jacob, Let me swallow down some of the red stew, that red stew there, for I am faint. Therefore his name was called Edom. And Jacob said, First sell me your birthright. And Esau said, I am now about to die. Of what use then is this birthright to me? And Jacob said, First swear to me. And he swore to him and sold his birthright to Jacob. And Jacob gave Esau bread and lentil stew, and he ate and drank and rose up and went away. Thus Esau despised his birthright."
I noticed in this account, much about "taste". The story of this family centers around preferential love,natural preferences and taste. Esau, it would seem, was a man who indulged his natural tastes, his wordly enjoyments, that which pleased his natural likes. And the parents likewise, chose to favor the son who pleased their own preferences and natural affections.
"Lest there be any fornicator or profane person like Esau, who for one meal gave up his own birthright."
"Profane"- bebelos: one who either was or ought to have been debarred from the threshold or entrance of a temple. Unhallowed, the opposite of "hieros"-sacred.
Essau's birthright was the double portion of land, the priesthood, and the kingship. This also included the promise of God to Abraham regarding the good land and the blessing to all the nations through his seed. This promised good land and blessing are Christ. (Gen. 12:3, Gal. 3:14)
As Christians, born of God, we are a type of firstfruits of His creation (James 1:18) sons of God (Romans 8:14) and" heirs of God...-joint heirs with Christ, if indeed we suffer with Him that we may also be glorified with Him." Romans 8:17. Hebrew 12:23 speaks of the church of the firstborn.
The promised land, the good land is a type of Christ. In the old Testament, Christ is portrayed by different types; the unleavened bread, the passover lamb, the manna, and the rock that was struck and flowed with living water.
We as Christians are meant to enter into this promised land. After being redeemed by the passover lamb, enjoying Christ as our manna in the wilderness and being saftisified with Christ as the living waters, we are meant to enter into Christ as the good land. It is common to confuse the good land as a type of heaven, but if we follow the type given in the Old Testament, the good land was was filled with pagan tribes and idols and the people had to fight against them after they entered in. Heaven will not be filled with pagans and idols...these things represent frustrations in life that keep up from possessing the land. In Phillipians 3:8 Pual writes of obtaining Christ, gaining Christ, laying hold of Christ; when we are doing this, we are possessing the promised land. The promised land was for enjoyment, we are meant to enter in and enjoy Christ.
Essau was profane for giving away his birthright. The Children of Isreal during their journey to the promised land longed for the leeks and garlics of Egypt and wished to turn back. As Christians, I wonder how easy it is to give away our birthright of the goodland for a bowl of natural, soulish comfort? The children of Isreal remembered the tastes that they enjoyed and were used to, they began to complain of a diet consisting of manna only and wished for the good things they liked to eat in their old life.
At our house, we have a set of books called "Pearables-character building kingdom stories" that we read to our children. One of the stories is called "The conquered Village" The story is about a land of the One true King and a village near the border of the kingdom. The people of the One True King's land were different from the people of other lands in their speech, (only speaking what is kind and true to each other) clothing, music, and training of their children. They could see that the foriegners in the land bordering them would be so much happier if they would have The one true king rule their lives, so they set out to sway the people into the kingdom. So, to let the foreigners feel more comfortable in their land, they began to play the foreign music, dress like the foreigners and train their children in the same manner as the foreigners. All so the foreigners would feel more comfortable in their land, hoping they could sway the foreigners to follow the King, hoping the foreigners would feel comfortable enough to stay and live in the village.
Part II tomorow...