The Birthright
Genesis 25:29-34
And Jacob sod pottage: and Esau came from the field, and he was faint:…

This blessing was principally spiritual and distant, having respect to the setting up of God's kingdom, to the birth of the Messiah, or, in other words, to all those great things included in the covenant with Abraham. This was well understood by the family; both Esau and Jacob must have often heard their parents converse about it. If the birthright which was bought at this time had consisted in any temporal advantages of dignity, authority, or property to be enjoyed in the lifetime of the parties, Esau would not have made so light of it as he did, calling it "this birthright," and intimating that he should soon die, and then it would be of no use to him. It is a fact, too, that Jacob had none of the ordinary advantages of the birthright during his lifetime. Instead of a double portion, he was sent out of the family with only "a staff" in his hand, leaving Esau to possess the whole of his father's substance. And when more than twenty years afterwards he returned to Canaan, he made no scruple to ascribe to his brother the excellency of dignity, and the excellency of power, calling him "my lord Esau," and acknowledging himself as his "servant." The truth is, the question between them was, which should be heir to the blessings promised in the covenant with Abraham. This Jacob desired, and Esau despised, and in despising such high blessings was guilty of profaneness.

(A. Fuller.)

Parallel Verses
KJV: And Jacob sod pottage: and Esau came from the field, and he was faint:

WEB: Jacob boiled stew. Esau came in from the field, and he was famished.

On Despising One's Birthright
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