Forgiveness is powerful. For the offender, being forgiven of an offense removes the burden of wanting to undo the wrong we have done. For the offended, when we are able to forgive someone who has wronged us, that removes the heavy burden of retribution we carry. For those who have been on the giving or receiving end of forgiveness, you understand this.
“Absolution is the most powerful form of forgiveness.” – Revenge, 2012
Every so often I’ll hear a quote from the pop culture of TV that is absolutely true. Yes, it may be said in the context of fictional entertainment, but fiction needs to have elements of truth in order to capture the audience. Today’s quote is from the TV show Revenge, and although you could argue that there is not much value that can come out of Hollywood, this quote about absolution and forgiveness has the ring of Biblical truth to it.
The word absolution means: 1. A formal release from guilt, obligation, or punishment; 2.In the Bible and in Christian practice, it is the forgiveness of sins afforded to one who has repented.
In the Old Testament God pardoned Israel of their sin at the request of Moses, releasing them from their burden of guilt, thus allowing them to progress to the promised land.
“Pardon the iniquity of this people, I pray, according to the greatness of Your mercy, just as You have forgiven this people, from Egypt even until now. Then the Lord said: ‘I have pardoned, according to your word’.” – Numbers 14:19-20 NKJV
In the New Testament the Apostle Paul uses the word Justified to define an even deeper meaning to the absolution that comes from Christ. Surely if someone goes to jail we say they are paying their debt to society for the offense they have committed. When someone is pardoned of a crime, they are absolved of the wrong doing, and the requirement for payment or restitution is dropped. To be justified however means that the sinner is absolved as if the sin was not committed, but the payment is made nonetheless.
“Much more then, having now been justified by His blood, we shall be saved from wrath through Him.” – Romans 5:9 NKJV
The absolution we get from Christ is for sure the most powerful form of forgiveness available to mankind, since Jesus Himself paid the price with His own blood.