————— February 02, 2015 —————

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I’ve always had an issue with the idea of the firstborn son being ‘special’.  Can we just start this out by saying that?  I’ve never cared for *any* firstborn sons.   Okay, okay, I married one, but technically he’s an ONLY born son, not a firstborn son.   ((Then again, technically only borns are firstborns, too.  Whatever.))  But even he… isn’t really strong in the Lord.  Alright – so he has no real heart after the Lord, let’s just be straight up, here.  And he’s got a serious obnoxious streak and can be a source of serious frustration.  So why would the Lord set apart the firstborn?  What’s so special about firstborns?

Since we’re being honest?  My firstborn son is… a handful.  Frankly, he’s the problem child in our family.  My aunt’s firstborn son was/is the problem child.  Brian’s dad was the obnoxious one in that family… and firstborn.  I don’t know of a single firstborn child that wasn’t a PITA, to be blunt.  So why would the Lord tell Israel to set aside all firstborn children?

And then I got to thinking about it.  Cain was firstborn… but Abel was the holy one.  Ishmael was the firstborn son… but Isaac was chosen.  Esau was the firstborn son… but Jacob was beloved of the Lord.  Shem wasn’t a firstborn.   Joseph wasn’t a firstborn.  David wasn’t a firstborn.  Moses wasn’t the firstborn.  Heck, Messiah is of the line of Judah, and Judah was NOT Israel’s firstborn son – that was Reuben!  John the Revelator was the younger brother.  Time and again… it’s the same thing.

Then I thought about it a little deeper, and what really was the benefit in scripture of the firstborn?  It was that they received a double portion of the inheritance of the father.  Sorry, but in retrospect, that’s actually more of a curse than a blessing.  Think about it.  When – in the Bible – it’s earth that you inherit, and not heaven… it’s not a blessing.  Everywhere in scripture – NT and OT, alike – gaining the world but losing the soul/spiritual is considered the gravest thing.  Only non-Jewish cultures would find this inheritance to be a ‘blessing’, because of the materialism and mortality-oriented mindset of the goyim.  So is this firstborn thing really even a blessing?

Wow, huh?  I probably have it wrong,
but it definitely startled me to consider it.
What a strange line of thought to hit on, last night anyhow!

And then it occurred to me.  The firstborn are never actually chosen of God.  They’re ‘set apart’… but maybe ‘set apart’ doesn’t mean what I took it to mean.  Maybe it doesn’t mean ‘set apart as special’, but ‘set apart because they’re a PITA and God set it up that way from the first’.  Okay… maybe that’s brutal, but just looking at precedence, inheritance, punishment in scripture… it kind of seems to look that way, doesn’t it?

When God redeemed Israel out of Egypt, He first killed the firstborn of all Egypt’s livestock.  Then He killed the firstborn sons of Egypt’s population.  Why the firstborn?  Because other societies esteemed them higher than He did, maybe?  I never thought of it that way, but it’s possible.  Could it be because the firstborn were the most troublesome PITAs, and God was taking out the worst of ’em?  I honestly don’t know – I’m just speculating, but from what I’ve seen in my time on this planet…

Just thinking out loud, today.
((As I piss off every firstborn son out there…))

((More thoughts…)) and I may add to this, throughout the day…

About the ‘only’ sons:  I think that seems to be different to the Lord.  Otherwise wouldn’t it have been ‘For God so loved the world that He gave his FIRSTBORN son’, not ‘only begotten son’?  The choice of wording there seems very poignant.  So apparently there’s a distinction between ‘firstborn’ and ‘only born’?  Interesting to contemplate.

OTOH, Messiah is the ‘firstborn’ of those who will inherit the New Earth prophesized in Revelation… which is another deviation.  But that’s a different story, too – Hebrews is clear that Adam was the first man of the earth, but Messiah is the first man of the spiritual… so it takes things a different direction, entirely.  Fascinating, the more I consider these things!

((another update))  My friend Sarah brought something else up in the comments at Facebook (cuz… that’s where comments are, now).  She said that the firstborn of Israel were also required to serve in the temple.  Well, until the Golden calf incident, then the Levites took over.  Sorry, but I still see that as more of a punishment… to be elbow deep in everyone else’s sins and sacrifices?  To take on that burden isn’t really a huge blessing, either.  Nor is cleaning the crap of all those said sacrifices that happen while the sinners are waiting their turn… just sayin’.  Maybe it was a way of working out the troublemaker in them…?

((one last update)) At supper, later the same night:
Lydia:  That whole firstborn thing sucks.  Wanna know why?  Because the firstborn teaches all that bad stuff to his younger brothers!
Anna:  Maybe that’s why they were sent off to serve in the temple…

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