Jacob I loved, but Esau I hated.

Expositions on Romans 8-11

Welcome to our new Bible study, expositions in Romans; chapters 8 thru 11.

I want to start with the famous, familiar, and, in my opinion, just about the most misinterpreted verse in all of Scripture: Romans 9:13—

13 As it is written, "Jacob have I loved, but Esau have I hated."

I’ve never seen so much twisting in my entire life, over the disservice that certain people do to almighty God, in this verse.

I was reading on a “Reformed” website, of how a woman had written in to her pastor, and, saying, “I have an unsaved neighbor, and I want to tell them that God loves them, but I don’t know if they are of the “Elect” or not.”

So, the theological beliefs of this woman would not enable her to tell a person that God loved them!

Well, we’re here to refute that statement tonight, and to set the record straight!

For God so loved the world that He gave His only-begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life. (John 3:16)

Doesn’t God love the world? Or does God only love His own, and not even move in the heart of the unbeliever, since He has hated them, like Esau, since eternity past?

One day, in a Christian chat room , a young woman, knowing I was a minister, asked me the following question:

She said to me, “You aren’t one of those guys who preaches that God loves everybody, are you?”

To be honest, I had never heard of such a thing—I had the audacity to think that God loves mankind; and that He loves mankind SO MUCH that He even sent His Son down to earth, to die for my sins!

And, I also believe that He died for the sins of the WHOLE WORLD, although most of the world will not accept this free gift.

If the Lord did not die for the sins of the whole world, then kindly explain this Scripture for me:

2 And He Himself is the propitiation for our sins, and not for ours only but also for the whole world. (1 John 2:1, NKJV)

Now don’t get me wrong, for I’m not preaching universalism, but what I am preaching is that God loves us all; even those who do not believe!

Once again, here’s John 3:16

16 “For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life.”

So why did this young woman say to me, “you aren’t preaching that love garbage?”

Or, why did the other woman say to the pastor that she was scared to tell a friend that God loved them?

Here’s why. Let’s turn in our Bibles to Romans, chapter 9, starting in verse 9.

9 For this is the word of promise: "At this time I will come and Sarah shall have a son."

Remember back to Genesis, God is promising Abraham that He was going to be a father, and the father of many nations.

verse 10…

10 And not only this, but when Rebecca also had conceived by one man, even by our father Isaac

11(for the children not yet being born, nor having done any good or evil, that the purpose of God according to election might stand, not of works but of Him who calls),

12 it was said to her, "The older shall serve the younger."

13 As it is written, "Jacob I have loved, but Esau I have hated."

Now the Apostle Paul is quoting from the Book of Malachi chapter 1, verse 2.

Let’s go there first, and see if we can understand what God is saying.

Does God really hate Esau?

2 "I have loved you," says the LORD. "Yet you say, 'In what way have You loved us?' Was not Esau Jacob's brother?" Says the LORD. "Yet Jacob I have loved;

3 But Esau I have hated, And laid waste his mountains and his heritage For the jackals of the wilderness."

4 Even though Edom has said, "We have been impoverished, But we will return and build the desolate places,"> Thus says the LORD of hosts: "They may build, but I will throw down; They shall be called the Territory of Wickedness, And the people against whom the LORD will have indignation forever.

First off, people who hold to this position are “Hyper-Calvinists”, who take to another level the doctrine of “Limited Atonement”, the “L” in T.U.L.I.P, which are the 5 basic points of Calvinism. (After these studies in Romans 8-11, we will study these Five Doctrines...)

There are many, many people out there who wouldn’t tell a sinner that God loved them, because they are afraid that, like Esau, God hates them, just like the other 95 percent of the world’s population.

The question is, what is God saying? What did He mean when He said, “Jacob I have loved, but Esau I have hated.”

Really, the fascinating thing is not that God hated Esau, but that God loved Jacob!

That’s the mystery, and the story of grace!

Jacob was a conniving little sneak, who robbed his own brother of his birthright, and, along with his mother, stole his brother’s first-born blessing.

How could God love Jacob?

How can God love you, and me?

Here’s how Dr. Criswell explains this verse:

“Hate is a relative term as employed here. Jesus used the same word in a similar way when He cautioned that a man must hate his father and mother if he would come to Christ.”

He goes on to say, “Obviously Jesus, who was an advocate of the law (Ex. 20:12) was not encouraging “hate” in the usual sense of the word. But, through a use of “The hyperbole of antithesis”, Jesus is saying that the love a man or woman has for Christ ought to dwarf his love for his father or mother, to the extent that the latter would SEEM like hate, by comparison.”

Luke 14:26…

26 If anyone comes to Me and does not hate his father and mother, wife and children, brothers and sisters, yes, and his own life also, he cannot be My disciple.

27 And whoever does not bear his cross and come after Me cannot be My disciple.

Now, you cannot have your cake and eat it, too!

Is the Lord Jesus saying that a person is to break one of the Ten Commandments, and to hate their father, or mother?

Or is that right only for those who are not “elect”—Those we can hate, and be like our Father in heaven?

Let me ask you a question: Do you hate your father?

Do you despise your mother?

Because to believe the one, then you must believe the other!

How about this Scripture; Deuteronomy 23:7

Deut 23:7

7 "You shall not despise an Edomite, for he is your brother.”

Who are the Edomites, and how are they Israel’s brother?

Israel is another name for who?

JACOB

And Edom? Remember the verse in Malachi we read?

3 But Esau I have hated, And laid waste his mountains and his heritage For the jackals of the wilderness."

4 Even though Edom has said, "We have been impoverished, But we will return and build the desolate places," Thus says the LORD of hosts: "They may build, but I will throw down; They shall be called the Territory of Wickedness, And the people against whom the LORD will have indignation forever. God says bear with the Edomite, for they are your brother, but then, a few verses later in Deuteronomy, He commands to wipe out every last Amelekite from the face of the earth!

Who does God hate? Certainly not Esau! Better look again at those verses!

Allow me to ask a question then: God says here, not to despise your brother, Esau. Is God then a hypocrite, hating whom He tells us to endure?

This is poison, my friends, trying to pick and choose who God might love, and/or who God might hate!

This is the word of God—

2 Peter 3:9

9 The Lord is not slack concerning His promise, as some count slackness, but is longsuffering toward us, not willing that any should perish but that all should come to repentance.

God is not willing that ANY should perish—The Muslim, the Buddhist, the Hindu, the Atheist, nor you or me!

16 “For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son…”

Not half the world, not just a select few in the world.

Only a select few will accept His free gift, BUT, that gift is available to all that He will call.

“For the promise is to you and to your children, and to all who are afar off, as many as the Lord our God will call." (Acts 2:39)

“ just as He chose us in Him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and without blame before Him in love, 5 having predestined us to adoption as sons by Jesus Christ to Himself, according to the good pleasure of His will…” (Eph 1:4-6)

“ But we are bound to give thanks to God always for you, brethren beloved by the Lord, because God from the beginning chose you for salvation through sanctification by the Spirit and belief in the truth…” (2 Thess 2:13)

Jesus himself said,

“ You did not choose Me, but I chose you and appointed you that you should go and bear fruit, and that your fruit should remain, that whatever you ask the Father in My name He may give you.” (John 15:16)

Listen to our Lord teach us about love and hate; Matthew 5:43

43 "You have heard that it was said, 'You shall love your neighbor and hate your enemy.' 44 But I say to you, love your enemies, bless those who curse you, do good to those who hate you, and pray for those who spitefully use you and persecute you, 45 that you may be sons of your Father in heaven; for He makes His sun rise on the evil and on the good, and sends rain on the just and on the unjust.”

The commandment says to “love your neighbor as yourself”. By doing this, we take on attributes of the Most High.

But I say, goodness gracious, how can God just hate somebody so much that He is cursing them to damnation (Esau, along with all the lost), and then turn around and tell us to love them?

And this commandment, To “Love your neighbor” is so important, that God wrote it on a slab of rock, with His own finger!

Should you and I be afraid to tell somebody that God loves them?

ABSOLUTELY NOT!!!

I shall put my own neck on the line here, ok? When I die, Jesus can say to me:

“Paul, you are hereby charged with telling your Bible students, and telling lost souls, that God loves them!"

“HOW DO YOU PLEA”?

My friends, I would have to plead “guilty”.

God loves us—He loves you, and He loves me!

The Scripture says that He is not willing that any should perish, but that all would come to repentance.

Matt 22:34-36

34 But when the Pharisees heard that He had silenced the Sadducees, they gathered together. 35 Then one of them, a lawyer, asked Him a question, testing Him, and saying, 36 "Teacher, which is the great commandment in the law?"

37 Jesus said to him, " 'You shall love the LORD your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your mind.' 38 This is the first and great commandment.

39 And the second is like it: 'You shall love your neighbor as yourself.' 40 On these two commandments hang all the Law and the Prophets."

Love your neighbor as yourself. My friends, God will not, (or can not, because of His nature), command us to do something that is contrary to His nature!

That would make God a hypocrite!

Which is outrageous—God is everything pure, everything perfect, everything holy, everything just and good, and everything righteous!

Does God love everybody?

“ For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life.”

Take it up with Him. He declared it.