"I have loved you, saith the LORD. Yet ye say, wherein hast thou loved us? Was not Esau Jacob's brother? saith the LORD: yet I loved Jacob. And I hated Esau, and laid his mountains waste for the dragons of the wilderness." -- Malachi 1:1-3:
Esau had it made. He was the first-born son in a culture where firstborns received a double portion of their fathers' wealth. In addition he had dibs on the birthright that came as an addendum to his inheritance.
Esau's father's estate consisted of huge herds, vast tracts of property, and untold riches, so the inheritance would set him up for life. But in Esau's day, the birthright carried far more weight.
The birthright was the right to be the sole inheritor of all the land which had been promised to the family patriarch, Abraham: The Promised Land, the one that formerly was called “the land of Canaan”.
But even more importantly, the promised "Messiah" was to come directly through the lineage of the son who held the birthright.
Now Esau had a flaw. He only concerned himself with his immediate selfish needs.
One day Esau, a hunter, came home from the fields after a long hot day. He was hungry and thirsty. As he entered the camp, he noticed that his younger brother, Jacob, was busy preparing a pot of savory lentil stew. Esau wanted that stew and was willing to trade any of his earthly belongings to get it. And Jacob, a wily trader, was prepared to make the trade.
But earthly possessions didn't interest Jacob. Instead he was forward thinking. He offered Esau the stew in exchange for the birthright, Esau readily agreed to the terms of the deal. After all, who cares about the future when you are hungry today?
As an end result, Esau lost everything his future could offer, and Jacob enjoyed the wealth and security that the inheritance and birthright brought
In a sense, we in America have received a birthright from our founding fathers. This great country, which was founded upon a quest for religious freedom had laws that were based on Biblical principles. And all the land, from the Atlantic to the Pacific, from the Canadian border to the Gulf of Mexico is part and parcel of that birthright.
But there is more.
As Ronald Reagan said so eloquently,
The culmination of men's dreams for 6,000 years were formalized with the (United States) Constitution, probably the most unique document ever drawn in the long history of man's relation to man. I know there have been other constitutions; new ones are being drawn today by newly emerging nations. Most of them, even the one of the Soviet Union, contain many of the same guarantees as our own Constitution, and still there is a difference. The difference is so subtle that we often overlook it, but it is so great that it tells the whole story. Those other constitutions say, “Government grants you these rights,” and ours says, “You are born with these rights, they are yours by the grace of God, and no government on earth can take them from you.
.Today, a little over four centuries after the Pilgrims landed at Plymouth, our nation is struggling to maintain our inheritance. Although a slim majority of our citizens still hold onto our national birthright, nearly half of America stands willing to trade it all for the meager scraps that are being offered by our government.
Freedom is fragile. Tyranny is always lurking in the wings, ready to crush it.
It's time for Americans to take notice as our government begins to turn away from the promise of prosperity, equal opportunity for all, recognition of the inalienable rights which come from our creator, and the ability to own property.
At the rate in which those freedoms and rights are being taken away, we only have about a decade to turn back to the things that made the American people great. It's time to stand up and work hard to retain our birthright before the beacon of freedom for the world to see is extinguished forever.