The Esau Syndrome


chocolate_strawberrySin, ah, sweet sin.  How do I enjoy thee?  A lot!  That’s how I enjoy thee.  I enjoy the instant gratification that sin affords me.  The adrenaline spike of walking on the wild side.  The knowledge that I am in control and no one tells me what to do.  The arrogance of basically giving God the middle finger every once in a while makes me feel tough. 

But sin comes with a price.  Instant gratification is great but guilt stays for a long time.  That adrenaline spike is cool but when you come down off it you feel weak and shaky.  Being in control is great until I make a wrong turn and end up in the bad section of town hoping and praying I get through it safely.  Flipping God off sounds tough but how tough am I when I come crawling back to Him when life kicks me in the, um, gut, yeah, let’s say “gut” there.

It’s funny, sin promises all these amazing things;  happiness, be your own boss, gratification, you’ll be cool etc…  The problem is that it rarely delivers and the times that it does it just makes you want more.  You’re never satisfied.  There is never contentment or peace, only the need for more.  Look around, the only truly content people are people who have figured out that more is not better.  That instant gratification is WAY over-rated. 

Think about it.  Most of our grandparents saved for most of their stuff.  There was very little credit back then.  Did they have the latest and greatest?  Not usually, but they also didn’t have all the stress of making that next payment or having to work two jobs just to pay the interest only payments.

How about the availability of porn on the internet.  I don’t remember hearing about porn addictions before the internet.  I’m sure there were some, they had Playboy and stuff, but it was pricy and harder to get.  Now, just search Google for anything, any word and I guarantee you will see naked people. 

I’m not trying to sound like some Christian wacko crusading against everything under the sun but at the same time we need to realize that every compromise we make has consequences.  Every sin we allow to take root in our life will grow.  Sin is never happy with limited space.  Sin is like a weed and gardeners will tell you that weeds always choke out the good plants. 

It’s called the Esau Syndrome-

  14-17Work at getting along with each other and with God. Otherwise you’ll never get so much as a glimpse of God. Make sure no one gets left out of God’s generosity. Keep a sharp eye out for weeds of bitter discontent. A thistle or two gone to seed can ruin a whole garden in no time. Watch out for the Esau syndrome: trading away God’s lifelong gift in order to satisfy a short-term appetite. You well know how Esau later regretted that impulsive act and wanted God’s blessing—but by then it was too late, tears or no tears. (Hebrews 12:14-17, The Message)

jakob_esau_linsengericht Who was Esau?  You can read the full story HERE.  Short version- Esau is the older brother and therefore the one who will inherit everything from their father.  But one day Esau is hungry and Jacob offers him food for his birthright.  Esau, only thinking about the short-term, agrees and gives away his inheritance for some Campbell’s Chunky soup.    Yeah, he was an idiot.

But hold on, don’t we do that?  We give away integrity for some office supplies.  We offer up our morals for a peek at a dancing girl (or guy).  We sacrifice our reputation to be cool.  We betray the sacrifice Jesus made for us to have a little “fun”.  The Esau Syndrome.

Jesus offers peace, contentment, joy and love.  Sin offers discontent, war, anger and lust.  Why do we keep selling our birthright for cheap soup?

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It’s all about Him,

Shawn

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2 Responses

  1. Esau’s a bit of a (word edited by author). It’s not just “one day” Jacob is hungry. It’s shortly after his father’s death. Esau had been working hard in the fields and was famished. What sort of person decides this is a great time to take advantage of their brother?

    What about all those Bible verses about feeding the hungry and all that (word edited by author)?

  2. I agree bl1y. It was a sucky thing to do to someone, especially your brother.
    Two corrections. Isaac, Esau’s father, was not dead yet. Esau is the hungry one not Jacob. Esau gives up his birthright, you had it backwards, just wanted to clarify.
    While Jacob was similar to a used car dealer the ultimate blame falls on Esau for giving into instant gratification. I have worked hard all day and been pretty darn hungry but I’ve never been that hungry. I have gone into debt for stupid stuff though, who was at fault there, me for taking the loan or the bank for loaning it to me?
    Also, please refrain from swearing, it doesn’t bother me but some that read this might take offense. Thanks.
    Shawn

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