The twin sons of Isaac, Esau and Jacob, are a classic model of sibling rivalry, and their contentious relationship has had a tremendous impact on history.
By studying eating in the experiences of those in the Bible, we plumb a deep well of instruction from which we can draw vital lessons to help us through life.
In the Bible, eating can be a symbol of fornication. Like Jacob and Christ, we must learn to curb our appetites, learning to distinguish holy from profane.
Jacob, though having a conniving spirit, nevertheless knew the superior value of the birthright, and struggled with everything he had to hang onto it.
We can do nothing to gain the favor of God before our calling, but we are empowered by God to carry out a particular part of His plan to edify the body.
The story of Esau and his selling his birthright for a bowl of soup is a cautionary tale for today. What we treasure will ultimately determine our destiny.
The prophet Obadiah sorrowfully dramatizes God's judgment upon Edom (Esau) for his hatred, haughtiness, and pride, and how and why Edom will be annihilated.
The epilogue to Job's story reveals a lesson for us. Job's 'golden age' was before him, not behind, and the key to his optimism was his relationship with God.
Parents need to teach their children to consider the long-range consequences of current behaviors, chastening and disciplining them while there is hope.