Dr. Jeanette Parker (file photo)

As you envelope these readings, consider how things of old affect us in present times. It’s true that we mostly do not celebrate the formalities of “the birthright” and its structure. However, we have heard even today about the priority of the oldest child. But the birthright privileges can be lost. We see that with Esau.  

Recall that Rebekah took special garments (goodly raiment, which most likely denoted the official, priestly position, as cited in Genesis 27:15) of Esau’s in the house and placed them on Jacob.  

These special garments were designated by the social rank and position of the wearer. (You recall this is one reason that Jacob’s (Israel) 11 sons hated Joseph, and kidnapped him, threw him in a pit where he was sold into slavery. Joseph wore a coat of many colors – a goodly garment, which classified his social rank and special standing. He held the birthright.)  

Isaac went on ahead and gave the birthright and the blessings to Jacob. He didn’t see well. He was old. Knowing death was near; but not sure who was present to receive the birthright. It was by “faith” that he went ahead and blessed Jacob. Isaac must have heard that he was to finally resort to blessing Jacob.  

Isaac’s will of the flesh desired that he bless Esau. He loved that savory meat. We can see his preference by the way he spoke to Esau in Gen. 27:3: “Take I pray thee; take your weapons, your quiver and your bow. Go out to the field, and take me some venison.” Isaac heard.  

His faith in the end prevailed. Faith comes by hearing. (Rom. 10:17) Rebekah was listening in. She heard the conversation and most likely recalled herself hearing what God had told her that the older shall serve the younger. 

In the blessing, we also take note of Isaac giving a description to Jacob he was giving one of the blessings “the fatness of the earth.” Esau on the other hand would be far from the fatness of the earth and heaven’s dew would not be his blessing. He and his descendants (Edomites) would live in desert places. To get away-run for his life-Jacob went to his mother’s brother, Laban. Even there he had difficulties.  

His uncle had him working, tending the livestock and perhaps other duties. Laban was a somewhat similar character as Jacob and learning that he was blessed because of Jacob, he paid him wages. Jacob wants to marry Rachel whom he loved deeply. But in order to marry Rachel, he had to marry her older sister, Leah.  

Laban tricked Jacob. Unbeknownst to Jacob, he wakes up and discovers that he had made love to Leah. According to the times of birth of his children by Leah, he had to spend a little more time to complete the time promised by Jacob to Laban. He had spent seven years thinking he was waiting for that period of time to marry Rachel. He did not have to wait seven more years to marry Rachel.  

This can be proven through the dates of the births of the offspring by Leah and that by Rachel. In the ending of this account (there is much left off here), Jacob felt the urgency to surreptitiously leave Laban with his wives and children. They are discovered and Jacob and Laban made a pact together. They got away. But who would you guess would be waiting for him and his family? Yes. You’re right! It was his twin brother Esau.  

Jacob was very afraid and thought he was coming to kill him. He had an army of some 400 accompanying him. Jacob had gathered flock and gifts to give his brother because of his fear and to assuage Esau from doing harm to Jacob’s family. As you can imagine, this account is quite interesting. How can we use this to better our own lives? 

Make well-thought-out decisions. This may take a while. Remember, your first thoughts are not necessarily the right thoughts. Think about what a wrong decision can come to and its negative outcomes.  Think about the goals and purpose for your life.  

Be watchful. Pray without ceasing. Live by the precepts Jesus has set forth for us as our guide. Be sober minded. Don’t fall for the “okey-doke” – lying, cheating, fast profits, quick positive results. It may look good. Looks can be most deceptive. Remember where you want to go and where you want to be in the long, long time – heaven.  

Don’t miss it. It’s a one-way trip! Take the journey with Jesus Christ. The only one who holds the key. Yes! The same one who holds the key to the universe and deed to the earth! His words are final. Be not deceived.  

Today is another great day to do good and be successful! Thanks for reading! Jeanette Grattan Parker is the founder-superintendent of Today’s Fresh Start Charter School, 4514 Crenshaw Boulevard, L.A. 90043, 323-293-9826, www.todaysfreshstart.org, (Ask Dr. Jeanette TM) “Inquiring Minds Want to Know.” All articles are copyright. All rights reserved © Errors? Or Questions? Please let me know. Join Sundays for music and message at 11:30 a.m. by calling (712) 775-8971, code 266751. References: The Holy Bible.