Lent Reflection: Remorse or Repentance?
Did you know there can be a false repentance, which we call remorse? Let’s consider the example of Esau, described in Hebrews 12.
Pursue peace with all people, and holiness, without which no one will see the Lord: looking carefully lest anyone fall short of the grace of God;(…) lest there be any fornicator or profane [godless] person like Esau, who for one morsel of food sold his birthright. For you know that afterward, when he wanted to inherit the blessing, he was rejected [by God], for he found no place of repentance, though he sought it diligently with tears (Hebrews 12:14–17).
We have no record whatever that Esau ever committed fornication. But in God‘s eyes, his attitude was just as bad as fornication. He had the birthright as the elder son—all the inheritance could have gone to him. But just because he was physically hungry and could smell that delicious soup that Jacob had prepared, he gave it up.
The Greek makes it clear that he was not seeking the place of repentance, but he was seeking the blessing. He was rejected because he found no place—no way—to repent. In this life, people can pass the point where it is possible for them to change.
To me, this is a solemn thought. The most significant moment in any human life is the moment when God begins to deal with you about repenting. If you shrug your shoulders and say, ‘I‘m not interested. Maybe later’, there is no guarantee that God will ever give you the opportunity again.
This Reflection is taken from