Blessing · Children · Esau · Genesis · Isaac · Jacob · Parenting · Rebekah · Siblings

How to Avoid Ungodly Sibling Rivalries

When it comes to a lot of subjects, we think that Scripture seems silent. This is often because we are looking for blatant commands instead of realizing Scripture has a lot of principles. These principles can be used for a plethora of situations.

We also need to realize that often, there are many principles we can take from stories of people in the Bible. The New Testament has many, but especially the Old Testament are full of these. Sometimes Scripture is blatant on what we should and shouldn’t do. Other times it assumes that we will take time to contemplate the stories and see the blessings from obedience, or the downfalls from sin.

One such story is about the rivalry of Jacob and Esau. This was not a healthy rivalry, but an ungodly one. According to their story in Genesis 25 they were rivals from the womb (22). God prophesied that two nations would come from them and they would be divided (23).

We may see the boys as the only problem. The reality is that their parents were a large part of the problem. These boys had very different personalities. Esau was an outdoorsman. He was “a skillful hunter, a man of the field (27).” Jacob was a homebody. He was “a quiet man, dwelling in tents (27).” Tents didn’t mean he loved camping, but were where they lived.

What should have happened is that their parents Isaac and Rebekah should have loved both boys equally. They should have attempted to take time to enjoy each boy and what they enjoyed. Instead they loved the boy who was like them, and ignored the one who wasn’t. It says, “Isaac loved Esau because he ate of his game, but Rebekah loved Jacob (28).” This fed the fuel of the boys hatred for each other, and the ungodly rivalry.

If you have multiple children, you could be facing the same thing. We all have children who love the things we love more than their siblings. We have children who have similar personalities to us. We should love and enjoy those children. 

We should also take time to foster a relationship with the other children. We should spend just as much time with them. We should learn to love the things that they love, because they are our children and we love them. This will help all children feel loved equally. 

Do you have a child who is more like you than the others? Is it easier to enjoy one child more than the others? Are you creating ungodly sibling rivalry by loving one child more than the others? How can you love and spend time with each child equally?

Thanks for taking time to read this Maddening Theology post. If you enjoyed this content you can find Pastor Tim’s sermons at You can also join us at 520 Marion St. Browndale, PA 18421 on Sundays at 10 AM. To make following the blog easier you can also register. You can also join us on Facebook at Cornerstone Forest City. Also, don’t forget to download our APP on iTunes  or Googleplay.