As someone who has a younger sister, I know a thing or two about clashing with siblings. In fact, it’s comical how often we argue and how little it takes for us to get into fights. One time, we even got into a yelling match over a glass of orange juice! My sister had just sat down in the living room after making some taquitos and asked me to get her a glass of juice since I was in the kitchen. I immediately got angry at her because she was just in the kitchen and could have helped herself. This led to us arguing, and the juice was waiting patiently for us in the refrigerator. Anyone who has a sibling knows what it’s like to get into little fights like this, and that the fights can also go much deeper. It can even feel like you’re in a battlefield.
Jacob and Esau were always battling each other. And even from birth, they were quarreling with each other.
And when the time came to give birth, Rebekah discovered that she did indeed have twins! The first one was very red at birth and covered with thick hair like a fur coat. So they named him Esau. Then the other twin was born with his hand grasping Esau’s heel. So they named him Jacob. Isaac was sixty years old when the twins were born.
It is so easy to fight with our siblings. Some of us even enjoy harassing our siblings, but we can often miss that our clashes can create a lot of pain and distance in the relationship. Jacob and Esau were siblings that got into plenty of clashes over the course of their life. They were never in agreement about anything.
Isaac finished blessing Jacob. Then, just as Jacob left his father Isaac, Esau came in from hunting. He also prepared some tasty food and brought it to his father. He said, “Father, rise and eat the food that your son killed for you and then bless me.” Isaac asked, “Who are you?” He answered, “I am your son—your firstborn son—Esau.” Then Isaac trembled greatly and said, “Then who was it that hunted the animals and brought me food before you came? I ate it, and I blessed him, and it is too late now to take back my blessing.”
Jacob posed as his brother Esau, and stole Esau’s blessing from their father! Imagine if your sibling stole your inheritance from you, how would you feel? The thing that was missing in Jacob and Esau’s relationship was God. If God was in the picture, then Jacob would be loving his brother as much as he loved himself, and he would think of Esau more than himself. The times when I get into arguments with my sister are because my relationship with God is weak, and I’m interacting with my sister based on whatever I feel instead of love.
Jacob himself went out in front of them and bowed down flat on the ground seven times as he was walking toward his brother. But Esau ran to meet Jacob and put his arms around him and hugged him. Then Esau kissed him, and they both cried.
The only way to have a peaceful, fun and inspiring relationship with your siblings is to have God. Jacob had to literally wrestle in his relationship with God (Genesis 32:28) in order to get the level of love and compassion he needed to have a great relationship with his brother.
Decide to pray through your relationship with your sibling(s) and follow what the bible says about how to be a good brother or sister. It’s amazing how a relationship can grow stronger when God is involved!