JACOB AND ESAU | Why Did God Hate Esau But Loved Jacob

ESAU AND JACOB
Another look at the happenstances in Genesis between Isaac, Rebekah, Jacob and Esau only send chills over my body. I had to reflect on the significance of that narrative and how it represents so much what Jesus did for us. Isaac must have had deep respect and admiration for his son Esau that when he was on the threshold of the door that leads out of the Earth realm, he called his son Esau, asked him to go hunt some games, prepare it for him to eat and bless him. I don’t know what time it was but that was obviously going to be the last supper of Isaac. Isaac wanted the best for Esau and giving Esau alone that sensitive information of his soon departure from earth showed the very intimacy they must have shared together as father and son! Well, there is a boiling question in the heart of almost everyone who have come across the story of Esau and Jacob and this question is largely based on what the Bible reported God to have said “Esau I hate but Jacob I love.”
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Like seriously? Does God hate? Didn’t the Bible say Children are gift from God? How then would God give Isaac the gift of Children and still hate one of them? Does that mean God created some people to hate them? Does that mean some people’s destiny are written out by God’s hate? Is God truly love or is there also a part of God called “hate”? These and many more are questions begging for answers. There is more to the story of Esau and Jacob that can only be understood when we understand what God meant by that! First, God can do anything He want without being held accountable by anyone! God can decide to hate everybody and He can decide to love everybody! It is all up to Him and nobody questions that because He is God all by Himself and He knows what He is doing! Well, that would be enough answer if we choose to stop here however, I am persuaded to go further and say “God never literally hated Esau! He loved Esau as much as He loved Jacob.” Then why that statement?
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Again, God sees the future even before they happen! God knows Esau would reject his birthright! This alone wasn’t moral because rejecting such a thing just for a plate of food means rejecting whatever it is was God’s will for putting you in that position! Everybody comes with freewill to follow their own path! God doesn’t force a path on you but He designs you for one! However, God see into the future and He know the choices you would make or not make! He doesn’t decide it, you do but even before you do He knows!
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Before I delve into a proper Bible interpretation, I want us to understand that God’s interpretation of love and hate has nothing in common with the human emotions of love and hate because everything God do still come down to the base of love. We must put into consideration why and where that statement was made. God never told Esau “I hate you.” God didn’t even say to Isaac and his wife “I will hate your son, Esau.” God’s hatred for Esau was only reported in Malachi 1:2-3 and we must understand that the book of the old Prophets are not a concrete revelation of the person of God. Some statements there are greatly shadows of a greater reality and not a literal meaning of something. For instance, the Bible says in verse 4 that Edomites (children of Esau) are people God will forever be angry with but wait a minute! God isn’t forever angry with anyone anymore! The Bible says the mercies of God endures forever! So then, why is that statement in the Bible? Let’s take a little journey back to the main story behind the birth of Esau and Jacob. In Genesis 25 a prophecy came concerning Esau and Jacob, they were both twins but Esau came out first! Naturally, Esau was the first born but God had chosen Jacob to be in the forefront of His agenda! Why? Why would God choose Jacob? Let’s get back a little bit! Do you know Isaac wasn’t the first son of Abraham? But it was Isaac God regarded as the first and only son of Abraham! Why? Is God being such a hater or sadist? Well, God had His own plans for the salvation of all mankind but He wanted to start with a people and He choose Jacob and his descendants!
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Why would God do that? Was Jacob more qualified than Esau? Was Jacob skilful? What was it Jacob had that made him so special? There was none! God was just proving a point, that it is not by power or by might but by His Spirit! He chose Jacob not by merit but by grace! This is the model of operation in which God wanted to operate! In the Old Testament, anyone who has the Father’s love seems to be in a better standing! The Bible says Isaac loved Esau because of skills in wild game but Rebekah loved Jacob and reason wasn’t given! I have a feeling Rebekah loved Jacob because he was always there with her, he was much more domestic and helpful in home management than Esau who was busy in the field, working tirelessly! Isaac loved Esau’s productivity and had wanted Esau to stay in his stead! Left for Isaac alone, he wanted Esau to carry on the Abrahamic mandate but God doesn’t operate based on the calculations of men! God does not coronate people based on who came first! Isn’t this how David was anointed king while his father and elder brothers were alive? No wonder He is called “Jesus, son of David”, this is grace! Esau was naturally and skilfully qualified but Jacob was not! Jacob could be as soft as a woman to be considered a strong vessel to be used by God but God isn’t looking for a strong vessel! He makes the vessel He want to use strong! Why did God prefer Abel over Cain? It wasn’t because Abel came with something better! All through the Bible we have always seen God choosing people who we can’t say are qualified but God was showing man the standard on which He operates in which merit has no say!
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We know this by looking at the New Testament interpretation of that story. Paul wrote in Romans 9:10-13 “Not only that, but Rebekah’s children were conceived at the same time by our father Isaac. Yet, before the twins were born or had done anything good or bad—in order that God’s purpose in election might stand: not by works but by him who calls—she was told, “The older will serve the younger.” Just as it is written: “Jacob I loved, but Esau I hated.”” Esau and Jacob were born naturally innocent but God doesn’t elect people by order, He elects people in His own order! He doesn’t choose people by works but by whom He calls. This was going to become a standard in the salvation of mankind in the sense that we needn’t keep the law or become very nice people to experience God’s best! God chose us like that! God didn’t hate Esau in the sense that we seem to understand it, He was only implementing His standards. Abraham did nothing to be called by God, Abraham was called while He was in his father’s house practicing what others were practicing! But God called Abraham out! God preferred Isaac over Ishmael even though Ishmael came first not by cheating but by the endorsement of Sarah! Now would we say God loved Abraham and hated another? This is what God was saying “I have chosen Jacob above Esau, I chose people not by merit!”
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We would see lists of ways the Edomites brought curse upon themselves! It was not because “God hated Esau” but because they were working against Israel as enemies! Working against people who have the direct blessings of the fathers that says “those who curse you are cursed” they probably must have suffered that curse! However, in Christ we are all Israelites, not as in biological or nationality but spiritually! God has chosen us all regardless of where we came from! The Bible says in Galatians 3:28 that we are all one in Christ and there is none that God hates or have not chosen! God has chosen us in Christ to be blameless for Him. We can see things that worked for Jacob working in our life! We didn’t come by merit, we didn’t qualify but God has chosen us!
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Jacob is the picture of a sinner who has been declared righteous not by works but by grace. The story of how Jacob received the blessings of Isaac is intriguing! Isaac had proposed that blessing to the chosen one “Esau” but in the covering of the lamb’s skin, though he still had his voice, his identity changed before his father, as long as he had come in the covering of the lamb, that blessings that had flowed from Abraham to Isaac flowed to Him too! Jesus is the lamb of God that took our sins away! It doesn’t matter what we have done, we may still be struggling with the addictions, we may still be struggling with certain things that has become habit to us and we may even still be sounding like “Jacob” but we are now in the covering of Christ! God doesn’t operate by sight as how men interpret sight, He calls forth things which are not as though they were and He has called us “righteous” because what He see is Jesus for we are now in Christ just like Jacob came in the covering of the lamb.
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God loves you and cannot hate you!
Hope this teaching blessed you?
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