TRUE FORGIVENESS


#108

This is the fallacy you use to justify your whole rationale; but it is weak and assumes too much. One does NOT need to condone such aberrant behaviour for one to truly forgive… sure, one can be left feeling exacerbated by the offendant’s continual negative behaviour, but to give a supposed wink and nod as your assertion suggests goes too far. The reality is… forgiveness DOES NOT negate nor set aside potential consequences of continual abhorrent behaviour.

Although what follows are OT texts and as such carry little weight or place with you Don there are some biblical examples saying in kind what I’ve just said above. With regards to Israel and forgiveness and the outworking of remedial justice under the Old Covenant, we find the following…

So it was there were times of punishment involving the outworking of temporal consequences for temporal actions i.e., their actions had real time consequences in this life where Israel’s temporal pain was the fruit of their trespasses; thus their judgment.

As can be seen by these verses above… the TRUE nature, goal and resolve of divine justice and FORGIVENESS is restorative, and NOT carte blanche wrath. God’s “justice” was met fully in Christ at Calvary, met fully in LOVE imputing forgiveness to all once and for all…
from this we can learn and do in kind.


#109

I am puzzled, Davo, how you can forgive a person and still execute wrath on him (or punish him) for his wrongdoing. What is MEANT by forgiveness in such a case? When you forgive while providing “remedial justice” what do you actually DO in your forgiving? How does the recipient KNOW that he has been forgiven by you while being chastised by you concerning his wrongdoing?

As for the 2nd and 3rd verses you quoted, they clearly say that God will show a little correcting now so that He might have mercy and compassion on them later. That makes sense from my point of view. After they have been corrected, they will have had a change of mind about their actions (repentance) so that God can then be merciful to them. Just as an earthly father sometimes administers correction to a child who misbehaves, but is then kind to him after he changes his ways.

  • Lam 3:31-32 For the Lord will not cast off forever. Though He causes grief, YET He will show compassion according to the multitude of His mercies.
    Isa 54:8 With a little wrath I hid My face from you for a moment; but with everlasting kindness I will have mercy on you,” says the LORD, your Redeemer.*

As to the first verse you quoted, it seems that translating the Hebrew as “God-Who-Forgives” is taking liberty. I have not studied Hebrew, but my Online Bible gives the meaning of the Hebrew as “god-like-one.” The Greek Septuagint uses the word “ευιλατος”. Ι have never encountered that word before. But consulting a translation, it may mean, “You have become favourably disposed to them, though you took judgment on all their wrongdoing.” This is much the same as the thought in the first two verses. After God judged them for their wrongdoing and they repented, He became favourably disposed to them.

Davo, I wish you would desist from saying such things to me as “Although what follows are OT texts and as such carry little weight or place with you Don.” It is untrue that OT texts in general carry little weight for me. Many of them are wonderful! It is only when Moses and some of the prophets depict God’s character in a way that is contrary to the way His character is depicted by Jesus and Paul, that I reject the former depiction and accept the latter. I am a Christian, so in case of conflict, I choose to believe what my Lord Jesus taught about God’s character.


#110

Paidion, do you think a person must confess every sin to escape punishment? Luther didn’t think confessing every sin is necessary, much less possible.


#111

“Repentance” is having a change of heart and mind concerning one’s ongoing wrongdoing. To give a literal example, if one is heading east in his car and suddenly realizes that he is going in the wrong direction, he changes his mind about going east and turns around and heads west.

Repenting does not necessarily mean confession of sin. One can change his mind about his sin practice and stop doing it without saying a word. However, if we have offended someone and have truly changed our mind about our actions, then I think it would be a natural outcome of repentance to tell the person we offended that we had changed, maybe also tell him that we are truly sorry for what we did to him. Yet this “natural outcome” is not a necessary condition for repentance. If we had a change of heart and mind about what we were doing, and quit doing it, then we have repented whether we say a word to anyone or not.


#112

Paidion, I am saddened at and feel insulted by you for giving reasoned, considered, and balanced answers on this thread. `It’s obvious that you know nothing about forgiveness, or the plan of God, or the meaning of the atonement, the scriptures in general, and you probably hate your mother; and that you are a devious, prevaricating, mendacious man of ill-will and need to be confronted on every word you speak.

From reading the thread, I think I’m in good company.

p.s. yes, I think the word for this is ‘satire’. :laughing:


#113

I remember plenty of times as a kid having my ears clipped for doing some wrong and then enduring the consequences of my actions… I WAS forgiven BUT THAT didn’t always remove the chastening; love and forgiveness sometimes hurts.

Again Don… the cart before the horse. His mercy (forgiveness) facilitates repentance — see Rom 2:4. It’s not a case of ‘no repentance’ it’s a case of forgiveness is NOT DEPENDANT UPON repentance; it is often something learnt FROM the pre-existing forgiveness.

The God who is propitious i.e., is gracious or favourably inclined, aka “forgiving” — it’s more a stretch IMO to claim the translation “is taking liberty.”

It is amazing what your eyes seek to READ INTO a passage that says no such thing.

I’ve only been taking you at your own word where you in dismissing away dealing with OT passages that don’t meet your requirements you have yourself exclaimed… “I don’t care what is written in the Hebrew Scriptures.” — your words, not mine.

Jesus didn’t reject Moses nor the Prophets… quite the contrary Lk 21:22; 24:44-45.

How do you explain away Jesus’ words here… “but he who does not believe is condemned already” for “…the wrath of God abides on him.” Or, “But I will show you whom you should fear: Fear Him who, after He has killed, has power to cast into hell; yes, I say to you, fear Him!” — Jesus wasn’t being wishy-washy; do you likewise whitewash these from the text because they cut across your sensitivities?


#114

Surely you are able to see that I said that only with respect to the false portrayal of the God’s character!

I’ve waited a long time for you to indicate what you understand by “forgiving.” But you never answer when I ask you directly. But now it comes out! You equate “forgiving” as being “gracious and favourably inclined.” If that is the meaning you assign to it, then I can well understand why you believe in forgiveness without repentance. I also believe one can be gracious and favourably inclined toward an unrepentant person. Indeed, I believe a Christian ought to be such.

However, “forgiveness” as I understand it includes not only a letting go of any ill will or retaliation toward the person, but also his release from any demands upon him and a restoration of relationship with him. This requires repentance on his part! Of course if he is truly repentant, he will want to make amends for his wrongdoing as far as that is possible.


#115

Folks, rigorous debate is good, but I think some of you have gone beyond that and are picking on paidion.


#116

It is disappointing you keep making this ridiculous claim. I have answered plainly and clearly a number of times now as is indicative when you cannot offer a reasoned and honest reply. You have done this by either… 1) ignoring or dismissing given texts. 2) blatantly changing the definition of various words within texts. 3) inserting repentance into texts where such is not mentioned. Playing fast and loose like this is not sound exegesis.

Again, you are hung by your own words… “but also his release from any demands upon him” — and what follows? — your demand for repentance. Humbug Don!

An honest reading of this thread shows I have made it clear, as in it can be read in this thread, where I AGREE repentance CAN BE a vital part in forgiveness. I just DO NOT hold your narrow view, and have argued accordingly with relevant texts, that said “true forgiveness” is NOT solely reliant on repentance.

But all that said… I think this poor old horse has been near flogged to death and fit for the knackery. :confused:


#117

So you think it humbug that a restoration of relationship is a necessary element of forgiveness of sin?

I once knew another person who thought the same. Concerning one who sinned against him, he said, “Yes, I forgave him, but I’m not going to go out and have dinner with him!” No restoration of relationship.

If you should sin against God, Davo, I wonder how God’s forgiveness of you would play out if there were not restoration of relationship. Would God say, Yes, I forgive you Davo, but don’t bother praying to me. I won’t listen!" Would such “forgiveness” satisfy you, Davo?

And there can be no restoration of relationship without repentance on your part—a mind-change concerning your sin.


#118

No. As always you spin the obvious to your own machinations.

What is humbug and quite obviously so is that out of one side of your mouth you bleat… “release from any demands upon him” and yet from the over side of your mouth you demand… “repent!” A nonsensical contradiction. Off to the knackery with such silliness!


#119

Davo, it’s fine that you disagree with paidion, but please refrain from picking on him.


#120

Give it a break qaz… me and Don are fine with a bit of give-and-take robustness. Believe it or not I actual agree with Don on some stuff. :astonished:


#121

I demand nothing!

However, I acknowledge your active imagination.

Can’t you see that “release from any demands upon him” FOLLOWS forgiveness of a wrong since it is an element of forgiveness, whereas “repentance” must precede forgiveness since it is a condition for forgiveness? The same consistent words emerge from BOTH sides of my mouth.

It seems that you require NOTHING of the offender. Your words to the offender seems to be, “You don’t need to repent. Go your own merry way. No need to change anything in your life. I forgive you totally. God may require people to repent, but I’m nicer than God.”


#122

“There is no true forgiveness without repentance”

“Forgiveness is a response to repentance”

I think I have those quotes about right(but they are from memory).

I agree that everyone must repent to receive the full benefit of forgiveness, but I believe there are two things wrong with those statements

1)The first statement goes beyond the word(imo). It is too broad. A more correct statement(imo), within what the scriptures teach is something like, “Forgiveness cannot be fully accessed without repentance”, or even something like, “True forgiveness can be given at anytime by anyone, but the benefits of that forgiveness may not be fully received without repentance on the part of the transgressor”

  1. the second gets the cart before the horse and also goes beyond the scriptures. Often repentance is the response to forgiveness. God forgave us first. Christ died first. Christ forgave on the cross.

Defining forgiveness as a response to repentance is too narrow. The definition is not complete as represented, so, it is not correct, because it obcures the truth, which is quite a bit broader. Forgiveness cannot always be defined as a response to repentance. Sometimes it is a gift of grace, totally unmerited, extended by the forgiver as an act of love and hope. This does not mean the forgiver is saying “just go do whatever you want”, anymore than “Father forgive them they dont know what they are doing”, meant, “Father it doesnt matter if they kill me, just let it all go.” It was more like, “Father dont destroy them, they are ignorant, give them time to repent”.

The idea that it must be one(let them do whatever forever and just overlook it) or the other( there is no forgiveness before repentance and there is forgiveness that does not require repentance) is just (imo) a 2 dimensional view. Quite like a stick picture, not an image of reality.

God forgives us daily for sins we dont even know we have committed.

“The Lord is not slow in keeping his promise, as some understand slowness. Instead he is patient with you, not wanting anyone to perish, but everyone to come to repentance.” 2 Peter 3:9

The fact that repentance is the eventual destination does not mean that God cannot bestow measures of forgiveness along the way to drawing us there.

“It is of Jehovah’s loving-kindness we are not consumed, because his compassions fail not” (Lam 3:22)

When Jesus says, “If I am lifted up from the earth I will draw all men unto me”. It is forgiveness that is drawing them." Christ crucified is the heart of the gospel. The serpent on the stick is the cure for the death of the serpents bite(“he will bruise your heel but you will crush his head”)


#123

I just watched a commercial for Liberty Mutual Insurance and they claim if you have a car accident they won’t raise your rates or penalize you in any way for the accident.

They call it “accident forgiveness” and if i were a policyholder i would say “awesome sauce” but the fact would remain that with or without accident forgiveness i still would have no relationship with Liberty Mutual.


#124

Actually, I think all insurance companies - offer accident forgiveness, as an add on. Liberty Mutual just includes it and incorporates it in the rate - they charge you.

Just as all Protestant denominations…as well as the Roman Catholic and Eastern Orthodox churches…have different spins on “what constitutes true forgiveness”. Basically…if you follow their theology…you will be assured of true forgiveness. It’s included in the theological package (just like Liberty Mutual).

It’s good to see that Paidion and Davo, have a lot in common - concerning this subject. :laughing:


#125

:mrgreen:


#126

Let’s see what George MacDonald had to say:


#127

I recommend reading MacDonald’s entire article “It shall not be forgiven” based on the text of Luke 12:10

online-literature.com/george-macdonald/unspoken-sermons/4/