Question

n the story of Jacob and Esau did God say that he hated anyone? 

Answer

The Bible does have something to say about God hating Esau. There are 2 references:
ASV Mal 1:3 but Esau I hated, and made his mountains a desolation, and (gave) his heritage to the jackals of the wilderness.

ASV Rom 9:13 Even as it is written, Jacob I loved, but Esau I hated.

Please read the context surrounding each reference. In the first (Mal is Malachi, the last book of the O.T.), Malachi is speaking for God to Israel, describing his love for Israel and his preference for them even though they don’t think God loves them. Israel is the name God gave to Jacob and his descendants after he fought with the angel (Gen. 32:28). Since God chose Israel to bless in fulfillment of his promises to Abraham, he did not favor Esau (Jacob’s brother). Esau hated Jacob because he was blessed by Isaac their father more than he (Gen.27:41), so God hated Esau. The rest of the book of Malachi deals with Israel rejection of God, sinful dealing with others, robbing God. However, God will send one to turn the hearts of men to God (Mal. 4:5-6).

In the second reference Paul deals with the nation of Israel in his time, desiring to bring them back to God through Jesus Christ. He recounts how Israel was chosen to fulfill God’s will, not Esau. Israel still needed to be conformed to God’s will (Rom. 9:19-33) by righteousness which is of faith.

By Larry Snell

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