The privilege of the firstborn son. Among the Hebrews, as indeed among most other nations, the firstborn enjoyed particular privileges; and wherever polygamy was tolerated, it was highly necessary to fix them, Deuteronomy 21:15-17. Besides the father’s chief blessing, Genesis 27:1-46, and various minor advantages, the firstborn son was, first, specially consecrated to the Lord,
Exodus 13:11-16 22:29; and the firstborn son of a priest succeeded his father in the priestly office. Among the sons of Jacob, Reuben the firstborn forfeited the right of the firstborn, Genesis 35:22 49:3,4, and God gave it to Levi, Numbers 3:12,13 8:18. Secondly, the firstborn was entitled to a share of his father’s estate twice as large as any of the other brethren received, Deuteronomy 21:17. Thirdly, he succeeded to the official dignities and rights of his father, 2 Chronicles 21:3. In some of these privileges there is an allusion to Him, who is "the firstborn among many brethren," Romans 8:29 Colossians 1:18 Hebrews 1:2-6. Universal dominion is his, and an everlasting priesthood.