From: Arise Malaysia Booklet.
Pastor's Fellowship Kota Kinabalu
The Myth of Sabah’s Twenty Points
29And Jacob sod pottage: and Esau came from the field, and he was faint:
30And Esau said to Jacob, Feed me, I pray thee, with that same red pottage; for I am faint: therefore was his name called Edom.
31 And Jacob said, Sell me is day thy birthright.
32And Esau said, Behold, I am at the point to die: and what profit shall this birthright do to me?
33And Jacob said, Swear to me this day; and he swore unto him: and he sold his birthright unto Jacob.
34Then Jacob gave Esau bread and pottage of lentils; and he did eat and drink, and rose up, and went his way: thus Esau despised his birthright.
This story appears to remind us to pray about the rights which were granted Sabah at the time of the formation of Malaysia, with the hope that all these rights be restored in the promises of the year of Jubilee. Otherwise the Twenty Points for the protection of the rights of the people will become red pottage! The eldest son in a family has a very important status and responsibility, he will not only inherit double portion of his father’s wealth; he is also the leader of the family. Esau did not treasure this status; he coveted food which was for a moment, and gave up his right as the eldest son for just a bowl of red pottage. His brother Jacob cheated him, and wrestled the right from him.
Malaysia was originally formed with 4 members. During the early stage of promoting the concept of Malaysia, because of the special political environment and background, Malaya, Singapore agreed, under the agreement between the representatives of the United Kingdom and the United Nations, to give to Sabah and Sarawak the Twenty Points and the Eighteen Points for the protection of their rights, which included immigrant rights, land rights, the rights for religious freedom etc. Hence, the two states of Sabah and Sarawak agreed with Singapore and the Federation of Malaya to form Malaysia. At that time, the governments of Sarawak and Sabah and their natives were given special rights just like the eldest son of the country.
Since the 1970s, the federal government had continuously implementing policies imposing restrictions upon the states of Sabah and Sarawak. However, the political leaders of Sabah were like Esau, who because of blindness and personal interests, had sold out Sabah’s birthright as the eldest son, i.e. the rights of the state government, hence losing the opportunities to protect the rights of the two states.
The Twenty Points and the Eighteen Points were originally the basic protected rights given by the Malaya Agreement and the Federal constitution to the two East Malaysia states. However the federal government did not honor their promises, exploiting the development of the people of the two states, resulting in the two states becoming the poorest regions.
Today, let us again ponder upon the story of the red pottage, let our political leaders and the native churches stop despising the birthright of the eldest son, but value the rights to inherit the land and the spiritual authority. As such, churches must pray for the native churches of Sabah, help them to come out of the spiritual bondage in the coming Jubilee, have the birthright of the eldest son restored to them, and help them to lead Sabah to restore all the rights which were lost in the past, so that we can enter from poverty into the promises of abundance.
1) To recognize that in the establishment of the Malaysia agreement, the Twenty Points and the Eighteen Points are meant to protect the rights of the two states of Sabah and Sarawak
2) To recognize that the natives, the eldest son of the land hold the key to revival of this land