Quotes — Forgiveness (5 entries)

After his death Judas found himself at…

There is an old legend that after his death Judas found himself at the bottom of a deep and slimy pit. For thousands of years he wept his repentance, and when the tears were finally spent he looked up and saw, way, way up, a tiny glimmer of light. After he had contemplated it for another thousand years or so, he began to try to climb up towards it. The walls of the pit were dank and slimy, and he kept slipping back down. Finally, after great effort, he neared the top, and then he slipped and fell all the way back down. It took him many years to recover, all the time weeping bitter tears of grief and repentance, and then he started to climb up again. After many more falls and efforts and failures he reached the top and dragged himself into an upper room with twelve people seated around a table. “We’ve been waiting for you, Judas,” Jesus said. “We couldn’t begin till you came.”

— Madeline L’Engle, “Waiting for Judas”

« πλ | 28 Mar 2005 »

Against the heart of the gospel…

[F]or a Christian the issue is clear: the death penalty is always wrong, not because it isn’t a deterrent and doesn’t bring closure, but because it goes against the very heart of the gospel. The one thing that Jesus asks us to do that sets us apart as Christians, more than anything else, is to love those who hate us, to do good to those who curse us, to not give back in kind, murder for murder, but to forgive our enemies, including murderers.

Jesus witnessed to this in his own death (“Forgive them for they know not what they do!”) and he challenged us to the same by telling us that our virtue needs to go deeper than that of the scribes and the pharisees, that is, the virtue of strict justice which, precisely, prescribed the death penalty in the name of fairness and in the name of God.

— Ronald Rolheiser, “Don’t Worship Your Emotions”

« πλ | 31 Jul 2006 »

The weak can never forgive…

The weak can never forgive. Forgiveness is the attribute of the strong.

— Mohandas Gandhi [via]

« πλ | 3 Aug 2004 »

To write straight with our crooked lines…

The goodness of this God of ours is perhaps most strikingly evident in his willingness to write straight with our crooked lines.

— Thomas H. Green, Weeds Among the Wheat

« πλ | 4 Oct 2005 »

We know we really must accept…

God’s mercy and forgiveness is radical, extravagant, and very costly indeed. It is also completely beyond our control and understanding, and that can be very, very frightening. In a way, more frightening because it is good than it might be if it were evil, because it is something we know we really must accept, someting we really aren’t supposed to have any defenses against. Frightening the way major surgery is—you really, really need it, you don’t completely understand it, you realize that it is really going to hurt before everything is finished, and you are not sure how things are really going to work out.

Claude Muncey

« πλ | 29 Mar 2005 »