Anybody Can Be Profane

May 6, 2010 at 10:25 am | Posted in Genesis | 11 Comments
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Genesis 24 explains how Isaac and Rebekah wound up married:
A Match Made in Heaven Part 1
A Match Made in Heaven Part 2

Maybe when you were in junior high school teachers would warn students against “P.D.A.” This meant they didn’t want kids hugging and kissing in the hallways. You could make the argument that “public displays of affection” were not a good idea in Bible times, either.

And Isaac dwelt in Gerar: And the men of the place asked him of his wife; and he said, She is my sister: for he feared to say, She is my wife; lest, said he, the men of the place should kill me for Rebekah; because she was fair to look upon. And it came to pass, when he had been there a long time, that Abimelech king of the Philistines looked out at a window, and saw, and, behold, Isaac was sporting with Rebekah his wife. And Abimelech called Isaac, and said, Behold, of a surety she is thy wife: and how saidst thou, She is my sister? And Isaac said unto him, Because I said, Lest I die for her. And Abimelech said, What is this thou hast done unto us? one of the people might lightly have lien with thy wife, and thou shouldest have brought guiltiness upon us. And Abimelech charged all his people, saying, He that toucheth this man or his wife shall surely be put to death. Then Isaac sowed in that land, and received in the same year an hundredfold: and the LORD blessed him.

Genesis 26:6-12

Isaac seems to have had a significantly different personality from Abraham. Abraham was more a man of action; Isaac was contemplative.

And Isaac went out to meditate in the field at the eventide: and he lifted up his eyes, and saw, and, behold, the camels were coming.

Genesis 24:63

In modern Christianity, we need more Isaacs. They are a little strange, but they have a great desire to know God. Who you are before God is more important than what you can do for God. We must be careful of our motives. If I say that I want to serve God and be used of Him in a great way, is it because I really want to make a name for myself? Is it because I want a reward? Is it because I secretly think God “needs” help? I think Isaac would have made a good theologian. We need theologians. Isaac wanted to know God.

Thus saith the LORD, Let not the wise man glory in his wisdom, neither let the mighty man glory in his might, let not the rich man glory in his riches: But let him that glorieth glory in this, that he understandeth and knoweth me, that I am the LORD which exercise lovingkindness, judgment, and righteousness, in the earth: for in these things I delight, saith the LORD.

Jeremiah 9:23-24

My wife doesn’t love me, I can assure you, for what I can buy for her (and it’s a good thing, because I’m broke!) She doesn’t love me because of what I can do for her. What would please her is to think that I am devoting my life to getting to know her more intimately. It’s somewhat of a crude analogy, but that is how God wants to feel about us.

Isaac valued God, but contrast the view of his son, Esau:

And Jacob sod pottage: and Esau came from the field, and he was faint: And Esau said to Jacob, Feed me, I pray thee, with that same red pottage; for I am faint: therefore was his name called Edom. And Jacob said, Sell me this day thy birthright. And Esau said, Behold, I am at the point to die: and what profit shall this birthright do to me? And Jacob said, Swear to me this day; and he sware unto him: and he sold his birthright unto Jacob. Then Jacob gave Esau bread and pottage of lentiles; and he did eat and drink, and rose up, and went his way: thus Esau despised his birthright.

Genesis 25:29-34

Esau sold his birthright cheaply. He sold it for fleshly satisfaction. Esau was capable of doing many things for God: hunting, fighting, caring for his father. But he didn’t care about being something for God. He didn’t care about being a man with a hunger to know God. He hungered for a little pot of beans more than he hungered for God.

Hear thou, my son, and be wise, and guide thine heart in the way.

Proverbs 23:19

Buy the truth, and sell it not; also wisdom, and instruction, and understanding.

Proverbs 23:23

Don’t sacrifice the eternal on the altar of the immediate.

And the boys grew: and Esau was a cunning hunter, a man of the field; and Jacob was a plain man, dwelling in tents. And Isaac loved Esau, because he did eat of his venison: but Rebekah loved Jacob.

Genesis 25:27-28

Jacob was more like Isaac, but Isaac liked Esau better. He probably lived vicariously through him. Rebekah loved Jacob better. It’s a shame when families are divided. Children will look for opportunities to cause division. That’s one reason why it’s so important for parents to support each other.

In Genesis Chapter 25 we see some similarities between Isaac and Abraham. Both had to wait to have their first child. Both were men of prayer.

And Isaac intreated the LORD for his wife, because she was barren: and the LORD was intreated of him, and Rebekah his wife conceived.

Genesis 25:21

Abraham quickly learned that his first son, Ishmael, would not receive God’s inheritance. Isaac and Rebekah found out the same thing, but their first-born couldn’t just be sent away. In fact, he came out with his little brother holding on to his heel.

And when her days to be delivered were fulfilled, behold, there were twins in her womb. And the first came out red, all over like an hairy garment; and they called his name Esau. And after that came his brother out, and his hand took hold on Esau’s heel; and his name was called Jacob: and Isaac was threescore years old when she bare them.

Genesis 25:24-26

Esau means hairy. Edom means red. Isaac admired Esau’s abilities and courage, but ignored his worldliness.

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 and his heritage waste for the dragons of the wilderness.

Malachi 1:2-3

The shocking thing for most people is that God hated Esau. However, when you truly understand the Gospel, you begin to be more amazed that God loved Jacob.

Lest there be any fornicator, or profane person, as Esau, who for one morsel of meat sold his birthright.

Hebrews 12:16

Profane is the opposite of sanctified, and, in some ways, the opposite of holy. “Holy” means “different from everybody else.” “Profane” means just like everything else: common or ordinary or “vulgar.”


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  1. […] delivered twins, and they struggled in their birth the way Jacob and Esau did. The baby with the scarlet thread came out […]

  2. […] ready to take his life. This would have been quite a reversal of roles, because Jacob is known for sneaking up on his brother throughout their lives up until this point. (Genesis 25:26-34) Christians today must remember that […]

  3. […] may be thrown is the most severe judgment the Lord administers to His own children – it is the judgment of letting them have their own way. This fire is the physical, not the eternal, not the spiritual, […]

  4. […] Lessons Found in Historical Accounts A Match Made in Heaven Part 1 A Match Made in Heaven Part 2 Anybody Can Be Profane The Scientific Method Lord, Leader, and Ladder Shove at First Sight The Name Game Choosing the […]

  5. […] let’s think about Esau for a second. He’s the one who made the decision to sell his birthright – his heritage […]

  6. […] use us again. Jacob is a good example of this. He was broken by God and then re-used. His brother, Esau, was never broken so he was never used in a favorable way by God. Moses is another example. He was […]

  7. […] is the shortest book in the Old Testament. It is about the Edomites, who were the descendants of Esau. The Jewish people were supposed to consider the Edomites to be their […]

  8. […] of people has been following the Israelites. These stalkers were the Amalekites, descendants of Esau, Jacob’s twin brother. They had been watching the rear of the Israelite group, and they have been […]

  9. […] on the Senate in Rome. Herod was a descendant of Esau, whereas Jesus was a descendant of Jacob. Esau was carnal and Jacob was spiritual. Esau was worldly and Jacob was […]

  10. […] that which was considered holy and clean from becoming defiled and made unclean by that which was profane. New Testament worship is different, but the principle still applies. Just as the cups and dishes […]

  11. […] weeping of Esau was the weeping of “I wish I had not done that, because it did not work out well for me” […]

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