In olden days, the birthright belonged to the firstborn and he would also receive a major portion of the inheritance. In the case of Esau and Jacob, Esau was the firstborn, and the birthright was his, which meant he was the one through whom the God’s promise made to their grandfather, Abraham, would flow. Unfortunately, Esau sold his birthright for a pot of stew as told in :
Genesis 25:29-34 (NIV)
29 Once when Jacob was cooking some stew, Esau came in from the open country, famished. 30 He said to Jacob, "Quick, let me have some of that red stew! I'm famished!" (That is why he was also called Edom. [g] ) 31 Jacob replied, "First sell me your birthright." 32 "Look, I am about to die," Esau said. "What good is the birthright to me?"
33 But Jacob said, "Swear to me first." So he swore an oath to him, selling his birthright to Jacob. 34 Then Jacob gave Esau some bread and some lentil stew. He ate and drank, and then got up and left. So Esau despised his birthright.
Now, what relevance has this for us today?
If we look at the scripture passage below, it gives us insight into what our birthright in Christ brings :
Ephesians 1 (NIV)
3 Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us in the heavenly realms with every spiritual blessing in Christ.
4 For he chose us in him before the creation of the world to be holy and blameless in his sight. In love
5 he[c] predestined us to be adopted as his sons through Jesus Christ, in accordance with his pleasure and will—
6 to the praise of his glorious grace, which he has freely given us in the One he loves.
7 In him we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of sins, in accordance with the riches of God's grace 8that he lavished on us with all wisdom and understanding.
9 And he[d] made known to us the mystery of his will according to his good pleasure, which he purposed in Christ,
10 to be put into effect when the times will have reached their fulfillment—to bring all things in heaven and on earth together under one head, even Christ.
11 In him we were also chosen,[e] having been predestined according to the plan of him who works out everything in conformity with the purpose of his will,
12 in order that we, who were the first to hope in Christ, might be for the praise of his glory.
13 And you also were included in Christ when you heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation. Having believed, you were marked in him with a seal, the promised Holy Spirit,
14 who is a deposit guaranteeing our inheritance until the redemption of those who are God's possession—to the praise of his glory.
15 For this reason, ever since I heard about your faith in the Lord Jesus and your love for all the saints, 16 I have not stopped giving thanks for you, remembering you in my prayers. 17 I keep asking that the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the glorious Father, may give you the Spirit[f] of wisdom and revelation, so that you may know him better. 18I pray also that the eyes of your heart may be enlightened in order that you may know the hope to which he has called you, the riches of his glorious inheritance in the saints,
19 and his incomparably great power for us who believe. That power is like the working of his mighty strength, 20which he exerted in Christ when he raised him from the dead and seated him at his right hand in the heavenly realms, 21far above all rule and authority, power and dominion, and every title that can be given, not only in the present age but also in the one to come.
22 And God placed all things under his feet and appointed him to be head over everything for the church, 23 which is his body, the fullness of him who fills everything in every way.
Jesus is the firstborn over all creation (Col 1: 15), the first born among many brothers (Romans 8:29)….and God has exalted Him to the highest place and gave Him the name that is above every name, that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, in heaven and on earth and under the earth… (Phil 2:9-11).
Through Christ, when we are born again, we inherit this birthright that Jesus has wrought for us as described in Ephesians 1. We enjoy this birthright when we purposefully live in the new covenant, but if we choose to live in the inferior, old covenant, or in mixture of new and old, we are trading that birthright that Christ has given us for something inferior.
Enjoy your birthright in Christ, be conscious of the supplanter to avoid suffering unnecessarily Esau’s syndrome. Rejoice.