I hold the belief that God brings good out of evil, that He can work with the choices of mankind, just as He worked with the choices of Eve and Adam. The Bible acknowledges Adam and Eve made sinful choices, yet further on in Genesis another woman and man are made heroes for their own trickery and deceptions. Rebecca (Isaac’s wife) was the woman; their son, Jacob, the man.
Both Saul and Esau were God’s original choices; both were betrayed; Esau by mother and brother; Saul by his son-in-law.
What say you: Did God bless these betrayals or did God bring good out of the evil of betrayal?
1 Samuel 1:10 Then from a flask he had with him, Samuel poured oil on Saul’s head; he also kissed him saying, "The Lord anoints you commander over his heritage. You are to govern the Lord’s people Israel, and to save them from the grasp of their enemies roundabout.
Samuel told Saul the Lord would give him signs confirming his anointing as commander over his heritage–and these signs were confirmed.
Where does God give a special blessing and birthright to the firstborn? That appears to be a human-invented tradition. God chose David who was the youngest of many brothers. God chose Joseph’s second born son for the blessing. Solomon, a progenitor of Messiah was not David’s firstborn.
As I said, God is quite capable of working with human failings. Isaac wanted the birthright and his blessing to go to Esau. Rebecca and Jacob wanted birthright and Isaac’s blessing to go to Jacob.
Yes, David was the youngest, but this has nothing to do with an oldest son’s birthright and blessing. No deception or stealing of anything took place. David’s betrayals were not to his father or brother–but to his king and a colleague’s wife.
Not quite Meri. Jacob and Rebecca used trickery to gain the blessing of Issac, but Esau had willingly sold his birthright to Jacob for basically a bowl of soup. Perhaps his low esteem for his birthright, which certainly would have been known to God beforehand, was the reason God chose Jacob, rather than Esau to fulfill the covenant that he made with Abraham. Also, though God would fulfill his covenant through Jacob, he didn’t exactly leave Esau bereft of blessings. He also made Esau a great and wealthy man in his own right and the father of many nations and peoples as well.
God can certainly bring good from an evil purpose but I don’t believe God created peoples evil intents, rather he allows them. This is the aspect of Gods will that I believe applies to the examples you gave.
Jacob was certainly no saint, but then there aren’t many people in the Bible who were. Abraham wasn’t, and neither was Isaac and Jacobs household was probably a wonderful example of disfunction. As far as David goes, he was an adulterer and murderer and his kids were disasters, yet David was beloved by God.
I suspect that there was a lot of rivalry between Jacob and Esau going back to birth. Isaac preferred Esau and Rebekah preferred Jacob and I further suspect both boys knew, and not only at times were jealous of each other, but also used their favored positions when it suited their purposes. I’ve often wondered at the circumstances surrounding this event. How did Esau end up supposedly on the verge of death in the first place? Would he truly have died were it not for that soup at that moment? Was there nothing else available? Or was Esau just lazy or trying to take advantage of his brother for a meal? Did Jacob really want his brother’s birthright or was he testing his brother by calling his bluff?
I tend to think there was something about Esau that made him unsuitable to fulfill Gods covenant even though he was firstborn, or perhaps as with David and Joseph, there is something about some little or younger brothers that make them more suitable to Gods purpose.
I don’t know that hero applies to Jacob, but God chose him, with all his flaws, to fulfill his covenant so both Jacob and Esau had to do their part.
The same events can have more than one interpretation depending on point of view. Consider this old story:
‘A farmer and his son had a beloved stallion who helped the family earn a living. One day, the horse ran away and their neighbors exclaimed, “Your horse ran away, what TERRIBLE LUCK!”.
The farmer replied, ‘Maybe so, maybe not. We’ll see’.
A few days later, the horse returned home, leading a few wild mares back to the farm as well. The neighbors shouted out, “Your horse has returned, and brought several horses home with him. What GREAT LUCK!
” The farmer replied, Maybe so, maybe not. We’ll see”
Later that week, the farmer’s son was trying to break one of the mares and she threw him to the ground, breaking his leg. The villagers cried, “Your son broke his leg, what TERRIBLE LUCK!”
The farmer replied, “Maybe so, maybe not. We’ll see.”
A few weeks later, soldiers from the national army marched through town, recruiting all the able-bodied boys for the army. They did not take the farmer’s son, still recovering from his injury.
Friends shouted, “Your boy is spared, what TREMENDOUS LUCK!”
To which the farmer replied,“Maybe so, maybe not. We’ll see.”