â€œJacob I loved, but Esau I hated.â€- Romans 9:13
There is no doubt about it, God had a different measure of love for one of the twins of than he did for the other. The phrase "Jacob have I loved but Esau have I hated" leads us to no other conclusion. But why? What is the basis for this distinction?
"I am not at a loss to tell you that it could not be for any good thing in Jacob, that God loved him, because I am told that â€œthe children being not yet born, neither having done any good or evil, that the purpose of God, according to election might stand, not of works but of him that calleth.â€ I can tell you the reason why God loved Jacob; It is sovereign grace. There was nothing in Jacob that could make God love him; there was everything about him, that might have made God hate him, as much as he did Esau, and a great deal more. But it was because God was infinitely gracious, that he loved Jacob, and because he was sovereign in his dispensation of this grace, that he chose Jacob as the object of that love. Now, I am not going to deal with Esau, until I have answered the question on the side of Jacob. I want just to notice this, that Jacob was loved of God, simply on the footing of free grace."
C. H. Spugeon's sermon, preached on Sunday, January 16th, 1859, on the theme of "Jacob and Esau" is filled with great insight here. - JS