See to it that no one comes short of the grace of God; that no root of bitterness springing up causes trouble, and by it many be defiled; that there be no immoral or godless person like Esau, who sold his own birthright for a single meal. For you know that even afterwards, when he desired to inherit the blessing, he was rejected, for he found no place for repentance, though he sought for it with tears. Hebrews 12:15-17
GGenesis 25:27-34 describes how Esau gave away his birthright–his blessing as the firstborn son–to his younger brother for a bowl of lentil stew. Esau didn’t respect God’s order of the family and “despised his birthright.” This means he didn’t count as valuable or holy the gift God gave Him as the firstborn son. He refused to walk in humility and made unwise decisions because of it.
Esau was Short-sighted
Later, in Genesis 27, verses 30-40, we see that Esau sought the blessings of God, but was still unrepentant. He blamed Jacob for “stealing” the birthright when he himself had despised this gift of God and given it away, valuing it worth less than a bowl of soup. He blamed Jacob, but the real problem was his pride and the lack of respect in his heart for the things of God. Because he didn’t take ownership of his own actions and attitudes and repent, he was ultimately rejected by God.
Esau Didn’t Learn from His Actions
Esau sought for the blessing of God with tears (Genesis 27:34) not repentance. Even in this discipline he blamed someone else for the results of his disrespect (vs. 36).
Then he said, “Is he not rightly named Jacob, for he has supplanted me these two times? He took away my birthright, and behold, now he has taken away my blessing.” And he said, “Have you not reserved a blessing for me?”
When we defiantly refuse to give up our pride, blaming others for our problems or situations, we cut ourselves off from our only source of help and disqualify ourselves from God’s blessings (James 4:6). If Esau had humbled himself and sought for repentance instead of a blessing, he would have received both. Pride leads to destruction in our lives, so walk in humility and the life that comes with it.