Sunday, May 14, 2023

Sunday Praise & Worship Message - Selling our Soul for a Bowl of Stew

In the book of Genesis, we read about a man named Esau who made a tragic trade. He gave up his birthright—the inheritance and blessing that were rightfully his as the firstborn son—for a bowl of soup. Esau's decision was impulsive, short-sighted, and ultimately cost him dearly. But he is not the only one in history to make such a trade. Today, we see a similar tragedy playing out in America. Our country is selling its birthright, trading away the moral values, family structures, and faith that were once foundational to our nation. In this sermon, we will explore the story of Esau and draw parallels to the present day, examining the cost of our nation's tragic trade.

Esau, the eldest son of Isaac and Rebecca, had a birthright that entitled him to a double portion of his father's inheritance and the honor of leading the family. However, in a moment of hunger and desperation, Esau sold his birthright to his brother Jacob for a bowl of lentil stew. Esau's actions not only cost him his birthright but also set a precedent for a pattern of behavior that would be repeated throughout history. Just as Esau chose temporary satisfaction over long-term gain, so too have many individuals, communities, and even nations made choices that have led to the loss of their birthright. In America, we see a similar pattern of moral decay, a failure of the nuclear family, and a turning away from God. It is a warning that the choices we make today can have long-lasting consequences for future generations.

Just as Esau disregarded his birthright for a momentary pleasure, America has forsaken its spiritual heritage and moral compass for the fleeting pleasures of worldly pursuits. The consequences of Esau's choice were long-lasting, and the same can be said for America's. The moral decay, breakdown of the family unit, and rejection of God's laws are evident in our society today. As the Bible says in Galatians, “Don’t be misled—you cannot mock the justice of God. You will always harvest what you plant. Those who live only to satisfy their own sinful nature will harvest decay and death from that sinful nature. But those who live to please the Spirit will harvest everlasting life from the Spirit.” (Galatians 6:7-8 NLT) Let us turn back to God and His ways, before it's too late.

The apostle Paul wrote to the church in Rome, “Since they thought it foolish to acknowledge God, he abandoned them to their foolish thinking and let them do things that should never be done. Their lives became full of every kind of wickedness, sin, greed, hate, envy, murder, quarreling, deception, malicious behavior, and gossip. They are backstabbers, haters of God, insolent, proud, and boastful. They invent new ways of sinning, and they disobey their parents. They refuse to understand, break their promises, are heartless, and have no mercy. They know God’s justice requires that those who do these things deserve to die, yet they do them anyway. Worse yet, they encourage others to do them too.” (Romans 1:28-32 NLT)

Esau's decision to trade his birthright for a bowl of soup was a costly mistake for him. He disregarded God's law and suffered the consequences. And yet, he is not the only one in history to make such a trade. In Romans 1:28-32 NLT, the apostle Paul describes a society that has turned away from God, a society that has chosen to indulge in sinful desires and practices. This passage describes a people who have exchanged the truth about God for a lie and have worshiped and served created things rather than the Creator. As a result, God has given them over to a depraved mind and to do what ought not to be done. The consequences of such a trade are dire, leading to all manner of evil and wickedness.

Today, we see a similar trend in America. We see a society that has turned away from God and is experiencing moral decay, a breakdown of the family unit, and a move away from the values that made this nation great. But it's not too late. If we hold fast to our birthright and remain faithful to God, we can stand firm in His grace. Let us turn away from our sinful desires and practices and return to God, who has blessed America and given us the ability to lead in even the darkest of times. We should never forget that our birthright as Americans is a gift from God, and that we must strive to honor Him in all that we do.

To return to God and greatness, we need to follow the example of Jacob, who valued his birthright and held onto it at all costs. Similarly, as Americans, we must recognize and value the birthright that we have been given, and hold onto it tightly. We must return to the moral values and principles that made America great, and make them a priority in our lives once again.

This requires a personal commitment to live according to God's word and to seek His will for our lives. We must also work to rebuild our families and communities, and foster a culture that supports and upholds the values of faith, hope, and love.

As we hold onto our birthright and turn back to God, He will bless us and restore us to greatness. We can trust in His promises, knowing that He is faithful to those who seek Him with all their heart (Jeremiah 29:13). If, however, we decide that satisfying our short-term desire is better than our long-term benefits, then we risk losing our birthright and giving into sin.

The consequences of not valuing our birthright and choosing not to return to God are dire. We risk losing not only our superpower status in the world but also our immortal souls. In the story of Esau, we see that he lost not only his birthright but also the blessings that came with it. Similarly, if we as a nation continue to turn away from God and embrace moral decay, we risk losing the blessings and favor that God has bestowed upon us.

Yet we must remember that God has blessed America in incredible ways. He has given us the ability to lead in even the darkest of times, such as world wars, famines, and diseases. He has provided us with the resources and creativity to tackle some of the greatest challenges of our time, from landing on the moon to eradicating diseases. We cannot forget these blessings and the responsibility that comes with them.

In the book of Deuteronomy, Moses reminds the Israelites that their prosperity and success are dependent on their obedience to God. He says, "If you fully obey the Lord your God and carefully keep all his commands that I am giving you today, the Lord your God will set you high above all the nations of the world." (Deuteronomy 28:1 NLT). Similarly, if we as a nation turn back to God and hold fast to our birthright, we can once again experience the blessings and favor that come with obedience to God. But if we continue down the path of moral decay and turning away from God, we risk losing everything that makes America great.

As we reflect on the story of Esau, we must recognize that America stands at a crossroads. We can choose to continue down the path of moral decay, family breakdown, and turning away from God, or we can choose to hold fast to our birthright and return to the values that made this nation great. We have been blessed with the ability to lead and make a difference in the world, even in the darkest of times. But to do so, we must stand firm in our faith, and commit ourselves to building strong families, upholding moral values, and putting God first. Let us choose wisely, so that future generations may look back on our time and say that we stood firm in God's grace, and passed on the blessings of our birthright to them.

May the grace of the Lord Jesus Christ be with your spirit.

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