Pastor Kevin Sanders

"He must increase, but I must decrease." -John 3:30

Sexual Sin and Regret: Esau’s Example

I often warn my students about the emotional consequences of premarital sex: heartbreak, shame, guilt, loss of self-respect, and the list goes on.

I’m beginning to think regret is more severe than all of the above.

“I wish I had waited.”

I have lost count of how many times I’ve heard this. Sometimes it comes from a student who realizes she’s given everything to an all too temporary relationship. But I’ve even heard it from Christian couples that end up happily married after falling into sexual sin. The toxic thoughts of regret can linger for years.

The Bible warns of this in the Book of Hebrews:

See that no one is sexually immoral, or is godless like Esau, who for a single meal sold his inheritance rights as the oldest son. Afterward, as you know, when he wanted to inherit this blessing, he was rejected. He could bring about no change of mind, though he sought the blessing with tears. 
–Hebrews 12:16-17

What if I asked you to trade your inheritance for a two-piece chicken meal? This is essentially what Esau did. This verse refers back to the story of Jacob and Esau (Genesis 25 and 27). For those not so familiar with it, I’ll give you a summarized version:

Jacob and Esau were twin brothers. Esau was the firstborn, so the birthright (the better share of the inheritance) was supposed to be his. But Jacob plotted to steal this birthright from his brother. One day Esau came home, famished from a day of hunting. Jacob offered a bowl of stew if only Esau would give him his birthright.

Esau agreed. He rationalized this by saying his birthright was no good if he died of starvation—can anyone say overly dramatic?

Esau paid dearly for his shortsighted oath. Jacob stole Esau’s birthright. It was given to Jacob, and this act could not be undone. Jacob, not Esau, became Israel—father of the twelve tribes.

The writer of Hebrews saw this story as an ideal analogy for sexual immorality. Virginity is a one-time gift that cannot be restored once given. Sexual intimacy creates a one-flesh bond that can never be obliterated.

It is foolish to trade the long-term benefits of purity for a few moments of pleasure.

Choose purity, not regrets.


  1. So true. We can never undo what’s already been done in the past.

    IT could be just some angry words you’ve said that you shouldn’t have, acts of impatience regarding a situation and you just couldn’t wait it out or something as bad as losing your virginity to a guy who isn’t your husband.

    Once a woman has had sex with the opposite gender she’s not married to, no matter how she denies it, there’s that guilt and shame. You’re always thinking “What does he think of me now? (after I surrendered my virginity even if we’re not married yet) What does his family think of me? What do our friends and all who knows think of me?

    Nasa huli ang pagsisisi. We only realize the mistake we’ve done when it’s too late SO it’s better to stand on our convictions no matter the pressure and what anyone says because in the end it’s sitll us who will suffer or reap the benefits of waiting till marriage.

    Good post.

  2. Kevin,

    I saw the link to this on Facebook and it caught my attention, so I came here to read further. Normally I would refrain from discussing my personal life, but this is a subject that hits very close to home. For some reason I feel compelled to share.

    From my own personal experience with this subject, I would say that regret is by far the most devistating consqequnce out of all of the things that you’ve mentioned.

    I don’t know if you can remember 20 plus years ago, but I left Pinson before my junior year of high school and moved to TN. I wasn’t happy there and I had every intention of coming back for my senior year. Pinson was my home, it is where I wanted to be, and I had grand plans about what I was going to do when I returned.

    While in TN I became involved with a girl and the result was an unplanned pregnancy. All of those plans that I had made, all of the hopes and dreams that I had for the future just vanished. Instead of enjoying what should have been the best year of being a teenager, I was forced to grow up and become a father.

    For many years I struggled with regret – almost to the point where it consumed me. I had done just what Esau had done, and traded my long term goals for self instant gratification. The decision that I made back then, a decision not to wait until marriage before engaging in a sexual relationship, had long term consequences, ones that I could not fathom as a youth.

    I tried to do the ‘right thing’, and the girl and I were married once high school was over. However, the marriage did not last. A byproduct of that has been a less than stellar relationship with my son over the past 19 years or so.

    I don’t want people to misunderstand what I am saying here, beacuse I know that it can be percieved as a selfish ‘woe is me rant’. The point I am trying to make is this – if you make a decision to have sex before marriage, there will be consequences. Those consequences may be superficial, or they may affect your life for years. As someone who has carried around a lot of regret, I can assure anyone reading this that they do not want to be in that position.

    God bless.

    Jimmy B.

  3. Jimmy,

    Thanks so much for sharing!

  4. Short post, but very essential and wisdom-packed.
    God bless you

  5. another great post kuya kevin 🙂
    and the comments shared were enough to justify the meaning you want to come across. 🙂

    i know my brother and most of my friends had or has been suffering with the same regret as Jimmy did; and I had felt the same regret in one time or another after “giving in” for premarital sex.

    what i do want to share, though, is that regret won’t get me anywhere now. But to just be lonely and sad in thinking of “what might have been” had I not gave it all. So I decided to just move on, enjoy the life i was given, and just charge that to experience. ^_^

  6. Jane,

    I agree–it is best to learn how to move on. I’m just observing what I’ve seen–even in situations where people have gone on to live happy lives.

  7. Hi! I haven’t visited your blog site in a good while until today. I have always admired your conviction on maintaining sexual purity before (and during) marriage. It has been a blessing reading your Godly counsels and insights especially on varied relationship issues confronting our present society. I know this is off-topic but I would like to know if you also have a Facebook account in addition to your Friendster and Myspace ones? I am hoping that you have a Group created in Facebook wherein updates regarding recent blogs, etc., would get posted on our Wall Feeds as opposed to checking our emails for them. Just wondering. Thanks and God bless! 😀

  8. Hi Joy,
    I’ve put a networked blogs (facebook app) here on the right side.

  9. heloo Kevin,

    its amazing that many of us believe that being pure is a greatest gift we can share during the marriage.

    According to my readings in the internet, there are 1.5M teenagers who committed pre marital sex, maybe out of curiousity., but what they think is out of physical pleasure, and have regrets after all…

    Your articles kuya kevin help enlighten the mind of those who are dying hard for their principles in life…keep it up , hope to read more articles from u,,,,im a dying hard fan of u……..hehehe

  10. Jay Anne,

    I’m glad this blog helped you!!

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