Gratification and Pride – This Sin of Edom


Now before I started reading the Word of God, honestly I would’ve looked at a title like that and asked myself “What the heck is Edom?” or even better, “Who is Edom?” But as I continue on my journey, it’s pretty cool that these terms actually start making sense.

Edom is the country of the Edomites. It was started by none other than Esau the brother of Jacob. If you recall the story of Esau…

29 Once when Jacob was cooking stew, Esau came in from the field, and he was exhausted. 30 And Esau said to Jacob, “Let me eat some of that red stew, for I am exhausted!” (Therefore his name was called Edom.[a]31 Jacob said, “Sell me your birthright now.” 32 Esau said, “I am about to die; of what use is a birthright to me?” 33 Jacob said, “Swear to me now.” So he swore to him and sold his birthright to Jacob. 34 Then Jacob gave Esau bread and lentil stew, and he ate and drank and rose and went his way. Thus Esau despised his birthright.

Genesis 25:29-34

Esau was incredibly quick to give up his birthright for some soup. Some might say, he preferred… Instant Gratification.

If you’re in the success books and circles, you may hear a lot about delayed gratification. Giving up what you want now, is the better down the road. Well, Esau was pretty much the complete opposite of that. In fact, he was so opposite, that it carried through to his generations and into the city and people of Edom.

I was reading Obadiah (that’s a book in the Bible), incredibly short book but it’s a warning to ALL the Edomites.

I have the Leadership Bible by John Maxwell and it’s filled with so many great observations in leadership. In the Bible, in the book of Obadiah, Maxwell makes a very interesting assessment. He states:

Esau was Jacob’s twin brother, an outdoorsman and hunter whom God scolded after he succumbed to his lust for immediate gratification.

He later describes how instant gratification and neglecting priorities led to self-centered, angry, and arrogant descendants. Obadiah’s book targets their selfish pride.

I just find it interesting that something as simple as self-gratification can cause such a ripple effect. But when I think about it deeper, how does self-gratification show itself?

The first thing I can think of is a lack of self-discipline. Because someone wants something now and not late has no patience or discipline to say no. And if told no, I can definitely see how anger and self-centeredness would show itself. Upset that they were denied, and self-entitled to feel as though they shouldn’t be. And there it is, that self-entitlement begins to show itself as pride.

Let’s organize this. How Self Gratification leads to EDOM (selfishness, pride, anger)

  1. Lack of self discipline.
  2. Lack of patience.
  3. Anger at rejection.
  4. Entitlement feeling deserving.
  5. Pride.

Now I don’t believe these all show up immediately nor show themselves to be so evident, but I can absolutely see these spirits start to creep up and subtly appear in individuals.

Needless to say, God wasn’t happy with the Edomites. The vision of Obadiah basically shuts down the Edomites from progressing anymore in history.

The leadership Bible highlights 3 principals that we can take away as men.

  1. God is the source of a Leader’s success.
  2. When leaders have the power to do good and don’t use it, God holds them equally guilty.
  3. Leaders will reap what they sow.

Remember that God calls us to be good stewards of what we have. If you need something, by all means, get it. But start to put delayed gratification into play in your life. If your vision is clear, make the necessary delays to have it fulfilled. God wants to make sure you’re prepared for what He has for you, but if you don’t prepare yourself, then you can be like the original crew and wander for years without making it to the promised land.

God bless!

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