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December 5, 2021 | Doug Sauder
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“‘Look, I’m dying of starvation!’ said Esau. ‘What good is my birthright to me now?’”—Genesis 25:32 (NLT)
“I’m starving.” We say this a lot, and yet, the fact is most of us, particularly here in the United States, have no idea what that actually means. I’ve even seen people use this expression a mere few hours after their last meal. Really, it’s a massive exaggeration of reality.
Yesterday, we wondered whether or not Esau had counted the cost of trading his birthright for some stew. Today, we have a definitive answer that he absolutely did not. He says, “Look, I’m dying of starvation . . . What good is my birthright to me now?”
Chances are, he wasn’t really dying of starvation. He probably could’ve made himself a little something, but he let his nose and stomach take the wheel. He gave us a perfect example of Philippians 3:19 (NIV), which says, “Their destiny is destruction, their god is their stomach, and their glory is in their shame. Their mind is set on earthly things.”
Esau’s mind was definitely set on earthly things. But, as we know, living for earthly, temporal things always leads to disappointment, and more often than not, to temptation and ultimately to sinful things. The biggest problem with temporal or sinful things is that they never truly satisfy us. While they may suppress our hunger for a brief moment, soon after we’re left hungry again, feeling emptier than we did before. Only Jesus can fill us whole and suppress our appetite for more.
Listen to what the Psalmist declares in Psalm 16:11 (NKJV): “In Your presence is fullness of joy; at Your right hand are pleasures forevermore.” Friends, everything we’re looking for and longing for in this life can be found in Christ alone. In Christ, we can experience the fullness of all God has for us. We have security, power, peace, acceptance, and belonging. We are sons and daughters of Almighty God, and because of that, we are forgiven, set free, washed clean, made whole—we are rich, lacking nothing.
I pray we never trade what the Lord has for us in order to indulge in the things of the world. And that we don’t allow ourselves to be deceived by the enemy into believing that we need something so badly that we get pulled away from the will of God.
DIG: How is Esau’s story a cautionary tale?
DISCOVER: What can you do to protect yourself from bad decisions?
DO: Pray for the wisdom and discernment of the Lord today as you face the temptation of the temporal over the eternal.
Danny Saavedra is a licensed minister who has served on staff at Calvary since 2012, managing the Calvary Devotional and digital discipleship resources. He has a Master of Arts in Pastoral Counseling and Master of Divinity in Pastoral Ministry from Liberty Theological Seminary. His wife Stephanie, son Jude, and daughter Zoe share a love of Star Wars, good food, having friends over for dinner, and studying the Word together as a family.