DON’T GIVE UP YOUR BIRTHRIGHT
SCRIPTURE READING: Genesis 25:33 But Jacob said, ‘First you must swear that your birthright is mine.’ So Esau swore an oath, thereby selling all his rights as the firstborn to his brother, Jacob. (NLT)
1. WHAT IS A BIRTHRIGHT?
– Every person is born with a birthright.
– There are things that each individual is entitled to simply because they were born.
– The word ‘BIRTHRIGHT’ is made up of two words: ‘Birth’ and ‘right’. In its simplest form it means the rights you are entitled to because you were born.
– In the story in Genesis, Esau was the first born and as the first born he was entitled to the inheritance from his father Isaac.
– So, a birthright is a right you have because you were born into a position, a family, a place, or because it is a right of all people.
– As a child of your parents, you are entitled to a birthright. From the moment of birth, you have the right to their family name. You have the right to be named by your parents and to carry their name.
– When I was born my parents named me Andrew and I was entitled to carry my father’s family name Roebert (Pronounced: Ray-bert). Perhaps a surname with an easier spelling and pronunciation would have been better, but this was my birthright. This right had nothing to do with how I behaved. I hope I wasn’t a big burden to my parents as a baby, but my mother says I was an angel – I don’t think she remembers every detail.
– There is a huge difference between a birthright and behaviour rights.
– The basis for a birthright is simply a matter of birth, but a behaviour right is based on the perceived conduct and/or situation, and these two rights are not connected.
– One of the most devastating challenges anyone can face in life is disinheritance. Sometimes people get confused between a birthright and behaviour rights and choose to disinherit their family or a particular member/s of their family. The results are usually destructive and crushing and people seldom, if ever, get over such a scenario. The reason for this is that within each individual there is an innate knowledge of their birthright and when they lose this birthright they experience it as the ultimate form of rejection and because the person who made the decision is now deceased, there is nothing that can be done about the situation. This leaves people feeling robbed and it can take many years to overcome this type of injustice.
– As children of God, we are also entitled to a birthright, and we can also enjoy the benefits of our birthright. This birthright comes into being when we are born into the family of God. Just think about it, we can carry His Name and be called Christians, after the Name of Christ.
– As we read the story in Genesis we can see that it is possible to give up or sell our birthright. You are the only person who can give up your birthright. We should never consider such an option. We should step forward and stand in line to receive the birthright that God has for us. Don’t let the evil one convince you otherwise.
– Let us look at some aspects of the birthright we are entitled to as children of God.
2. OUR BIRTHRIGHT INCLUDES FORGIVENESS
– When we were born as infants, we came into this world with a clean slate. We did not arrive with bad habits and evil intents. But from the moment of birth, we were exposed to all manner of things that human beings are capable of.
– During the course of our development and in the process of life we made our own mistakes and sinned along the way.
– A problem came into the picture – we were no longer pure and innocent, but we became tainted because of what we had done and because of what had been done to us. This is what I call the ‘sin problem’.
– Romans 3:23 ‘For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God.’
– However, as children of God, we have a birthright to forgiveness.
– 1 John 1:9 ‘But if we confess our sins to Him, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all wickedness. (unrighteousness)’
– In Christ we have access to this wonderful birthright that gives us the right to be forgiven and to know the awesome gift of His forgiveness in our lives.
– Romans 6:23 ‘For the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life through Christ Jesus our Lord.’
– Forgiveness is perhaps one of the greatest gifts we can ever receive and it is also one of the greatest gifts we can give to others.
– God extends forgiveness to us and He expects that we would follow His example and extend it to others.
– Luke 11:4 ‘Forgive us our sins, for we also forgive everyone who sins against us.’
– We have this birthright of forgiveness that is available to us.
– Why would we give up or sell this birthright and exchange it for bitterness and hatred when we can be free to receive forgiveness and give forgiveness?
3. OUR BIRTHRIGHT INCLUDES KNOWING WE ARE LOVED BY GOD
– Another great privilege that we can enjoy is the knowledge that as children of God we can know that He loves us.
– Right now, wherever you may find yourself, His love is reaching out to you.
– Other people may dislike, despise or even hate you, but He will never be like that towards you.
– Jeremiah 31:3 ‘I have loved you with an everlasting love; I have drawn you with unfailing kindness.’
– John 3:16 ‘For God so loved the world (this includes you – specifically and intentionally) that He gave His one and only Son…’
– Romans 8:38-39 ‘For I am persuaded that neither death nor life, nor angels nor principalities nor powers, nor things present nor things to come, nor height nor depth, nor any other created thing, shall be able to separate us from the love of God which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.’
– Nothing can separate you from His great love for you – that is your birthright.
4. OUR BIRTHRIGHT IS TO KNOW THE SAVING POWER OF JESUS
– The salvation that Christ offers us and the joy of being in right-standing with God is a birthright, available to us all.
– This great benefit or birthright opens the door to us being able to know God and to experience His gift (our birthright) of eternal life.
– John 3:16 ‘For God so loved the world that He gave His one and only Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish but have eternal life.’
– His saving power is available to you today.
– His love is reaching out to you to save you.
– If you have never given your life to God, now is the time. This is your appointed moment. He is knocking at your heart’s door and waiting for you to open the door to your heart and life so that He can come and live within you.
– If you are seriously considering this and want to take ownership of your birthright then here is a prayer you can pray to settle this matter once and for all.
– Dear Lord Jesus,
I know I have sinned in my thoughts, words and actions.
There are so many good things I have not done.
There are so many sinful things I have done.
I am sorry for my sins and turn from everything I know to be wrong.
I know You gave Your life upon the cross for me.
Gratefully I give my life back to You.
Now I ask You to come into my life.
Come in as my Saviour to cleanse me,
Come in as my Lord to control me,
Come in as my Friend to be with me,
and by Your grace, I will serve You all the years of my life in obedience.
In Your precious Name, Amen.
– If you prayed this prayer I would love to hear from you. Just send me an email to email@example.com and just say: ‘I prayed the prayer!’
5. YOUR BIRTHRIGHT – THE PERSON OF THE HOLY SPIRIT
– You are no longer alone – God is with you. You are His child and as His child you have access to His Holy Spirit as your birthright.
– John 14:16 ‘And I will pray the Father, and He shall give you another Comforter, that He may abide with you for ever.’
– The Comforter is the Holy Spirit and He was sent to be your comforter, advocate and counsellor.
– He was not just sent to the early church and then withdrawn. He was sent to all humanity for all time and to be with each one of His children forever. (This includes you!)
– If you will give the Holy Spirit the right of way in your life, you will find that He will gently and graciously prompt and lead you as you grow in your relationship with God.
– John 14:26 ‘But the Advocate, the Holy Spirit, Whom the Father will send in My Name, will teach you all things and will remind you of everything I have told you.’
– The choice between receiving our birthright and giving it up is constantly being presented to us.
– Don’t give up your birthright, don’t sell your birthright for temporary pleasures.
– It’s yours and you can take hold of it today and make it yours for eternity.
By Andrew W Roebert
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