Essay by josheilandHigh School, 10th gradeA+, November 2014

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Josh Eiland

2 October 2014

Period 4 Allen

Old Testament

Forgiveness Reflection

The first article, Do I Have to Forgive?, tells a very interesting perspective focusing on the question of a woman who had all four of her sons murdered by the same men- "To be a good Christian, do I have to forgive them?" She asks the preacher, but he can tell that "she wanted more than my opinion"- what she is really looking for is Biblical evidence to help her in this decision. It was interesting to me that the preacher didn't know right away how to answer, and took six months to simply look at other victims and try to gather an answer from their stories. It shows that even very religious and knowledgeable people don't have all the answers, and they have to think about the world and contemplate moral questions too.

I was particularly interested in the idea that "not even God forgives what you have done to another," and had a bit of trouble understanding what exactly this meant. I interpreted it as meaning that you can't expect for all your actions against other people to be automatically forgiven by God, but that you should also seek their personal forgiveness after you have properly repented. The three-step process of repentance laid out as "remorse, restitution, and regeneration" was helpful for me to see an effective way to go about seeking forgiveness, because often this process can be awkward at first if you don't have direction on how to start.

The second article was a very touching and thought-inspiring scenario in which a Nazi who had persecuted others asked a Jew for forgiveness for his actions. I found that the main question and topic of interest in this article was...