God uses flawed people.

The Rev. Dr. Chuck Thebeau
Weekly Blog
Dear saints of Christ Our King:
Does God use flawed people?  Do you feel spiritually mature enough to be used by God?  The passage from this past Sunday, the story of Jacob and Esau, gives us an answer. 
Esau is described in Genesis 25 as the first-born son of the patriarch, Isaac.  Isaac was the son of the promise given to Abraham, Genesis 12, that he would be the father of many nations and that through his descendants would come blessing to the world.  What we know looking back is that Jesus the Messiah is the fulfillment of that promise.  So, through the descendants of Abraham would come a promised people and through them a promised Messiah.  Well the natural expectation would be that Esau as the firstborn would be heir through whom the promise would continue.  However, that is not what was prophesied before his birth and is not what happened historically.  In chapter 25 of Genesis God communicates that Esau’s younger twin brother, Jacob, would be preeminent.  Why would that be?
On the surface, most of us would probably pick Esau as the heir of the promise.  Esau is described as a skillful hunter, an outdoorsman.  You might imagine a rugged broad-shouldered Texan who is self-sufficient and able to provide for those around him. And in fact, that is one of the things his father Isaac so appreciated about him.  He took delight in the game that Esau would bring back to eat.  Jacob on the other hand is described as a quiet man who stayed at home.  A momma’s boy.  Who would you pick?
Well not so fast on making that choice.  There are other elements to this story.  First, Esau is revealed as one who didn’t take the promises of God all that seriously. We are told that because he was tired out and hungry he sold his birthright to Jacob for a bowl of stew!  On the other hand, later in chapter 27, Jacob deceives his father Isaac in order to get the family inheritance (blessing) bestowed on himself!  Who do you pick?  One might still lean toward Esau, who wants to bless a deceiver?  Ah, but there is more.  The Bible makes a brief statement in Gen. 26 that Esau went ahead and married two women that did not follow the God of Abraham and Isaac.  This showed again little regard for the promises of God.  The New Testament tells us more.  In Hebrews 12:16 we are told that actually, Esau was a sexually immoral and unholy man.  So, who does God pick for the promise?  Neither one of them is of the kind of character that “deserves” to be the heir of the promise made to Abraham and Isaac! 
What we see is that both of them are flawed people!  So to go back to our original question, yes God uses flawed people.  Actually, other than His Son Jesus, that is all he has to work with!  What we discover as the story goes on is that this “quiet” man Jacob is actually serious about God and His promises, though flawed.  Indeed, the word translated quiet can be translated “upright,” “wholesome,” or “having integrity.”  In the context of his concern for the blessing, it at least suggests that he was concerned with the promises of God.  In other words, unlike Esau, Jacob, though a flawed sinner, was concerned with the things of God.  And it is such people that God chooses.  St. Paul was flawed, St. Peter was flawed, Moses was flawed, King David was flawed, Abraham was flawed.  But nevertheless, they had hearts that responded to God, they were used of God, and they became more holy.  So also, you!  It is because of the grace of God that you, having a heart that seeks Him, are chosen to be heirs of His promises.  By His grace, not your merit, you have been grafted in to the family of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, the family of the Messiah, Jesus.  And He will use you, imperfect as you are, and He will use your study of His Word and your life’s journey with Him to shape you more into the likeness of His Son!
In Jesus’ love,
Fr. Chuck