Radical Forgiveness Quotes

We've searched our database for all the quotes and captions related to Radical Forgiveness. Here they are! All 100 of them:

I am not the first person you loved. You are not the first person I looked at with a mouthful of forevers. We have both known loss like the sharp edges of a knife. We have both lived with lips more scar tissue than skin. Our love came unannounced in the middle of the night. Our love came when we’d given up on asking love to come. I think that has to be part of its miracle. This is how we heal. I will kiss you like forgiveness. You will hold me like I’m hope. Our arms will bandage and we will press promises between us like flowers in a book. I will write sonnets to the salt of sweat on your skin. I will write novels to the scar of your nose. I will write a dictionary of all the words I have used trying to describe the way it feels to have finally, finally found you. And I will not be afraid of your scars. I know sometimes it’s still hard to let me see you in all your cracked perfection, but please know: whether it’s the days you burn more brilliant than the sun or the nights you collapse into my lap your body broken into a thousand questions, you are the most beautiful thing I’ve ever seen. I will love you when you are a still day. I will love you when you are a hurricane.
Clementine von Radics
God's capacity to forgive is greater than our capacity to sin; while our sin reaches far, God's grace reaches farther. It's a message revealing the radical contrast between the sinful heart of mankind and the gracious heart of mankind's Creator.
Tullian Tchividjian (Surprised by Grace: God's Relentless Pursuit of Rebels)
Today the logic goes something like this: 'Calling a ruler Son of God is out of style. No one really does that nowadays. We can support a president while also worshiping Jesus as the Son of God.' But how is this possible? For one says that we must love our enemies, and the other says we must kill them; one promotes the economics of competition, while the other admonishes the forgiveness of debts. To which do we pledge allegiance?
Shane Claiborne (Jesus for President: Politics for Ordinary Radicals)
Jesus said his disciples would be known for their love, not for their placards of protest and angry letters to the editor.
Brian Zahnd (Radical Forgiveness: God's Call to Unconditional Love)
Peace is not just about the absence of conflict; it’s also about the presence of justice. Martin Luther King Jr. even distinguished between “the devil’s peace” and God’s true peace. A counterfeit peace exists when people are pacified or distracted or so beat up and tired of fighting that all seems calm. But true peace does not exist until there is justice, restoration, forgiveness. Peacemaking doesn’t mean passivity. It is the act of interrupting injustice without mirroring injustice, the act of disarming evil without destroying the evildoer, the act of finding a third way that is neither fight nor flight but the careful, arduous pursuit of reconciliation and justice. It is about a revolution of love that is big enough to set both the oppressed and the oppressors free.
Shane Claiborne (Common Prayer: A Liturgy for Ordinary Radicals)
Love is when you let someone be the way she is. When you let up on your judgments of someone, there is a free space in which forgiveness and love occur.
Brad Blanton (Radical Honesty: How to Transform Your Life by Telling the Truth)
We reject the lies of inequality, we affirm the Spirit, we forgive radically, we advocate for love and demonstrate it by folding laundry, and we live these Kingdom ways of shalom prophetically in the world.
Sarah Bessey (Jesus Feminist: An Invitation to Revisit the Bible's View of Women)
The point is not to find the average customer but to find early adopters: the customers who feel the need for the product most acutely. Those customers tend to be more forgiving of mistakes and are especially eager to give feedback.
Eric Ries (The Lean Startup: How Today's Entrepreneurs Use Continuous Innovation to Create Radically Successful Businesses)
I'm not always able to think about so much loss without bitterness and anger. I don't know if I'll ever be capable of loving my enemies; I'm not always capable of forgiving myself.
Sara Miles (Take This Bread: A Radical Conversion)
Mouthful of Forevers I am not the first person you loved. You are not the first person I looked at with a mouthful of forevers. We have both known loss like the sharp edges of a knife. We have both lived with lips more scar tissue than skin. Our love came unannounced in the middle of the night. Our love came when we’d given up on asking love to come. I think that has to be part of its miracle.   This is how we heal. I will kiss you like forgiveness. You will hold me like I’m hope. Our arms will bandage and we will press promises between us like flowers in a book. I will write sonnets to the salt of sweat on your skin. I will write novels to the scar on your nose. I will write a dictionary of all the words I have used trying to describe the way it feels to have finally, finally found you.   And I will not be afraid of your scars.   I know sometimes it’s still hard to let me see you in all your cracked perfection, but please know: Whether it’s the days you burn more brilliant than the sun or the nights you collapse into my lap, your body broken into a thousand questions, you are the most beautiful thing I’ve ever seen. I will love you when you are a still day. I will love you when you are a hurricane.
Clementine von Radics (Mouthful of Forevers)
Every time you forgive someone for a serious wrong, they may begin to love you a little more, but you'll begin loving them a little less. On the very day when they love you the most, you may not feel anything for them at all.
Kianu Starr
Therapy is over when a person stops incessantly demanding that other people be different from what they are, forgives his or her parents and other begrudged former intimates, reclaims the power to make life work, and takes responsibility for doing so.
Brad Blanton (Radical Honesty: How to Transform Your Life by Telling the Truth)
If you feel like a failure in any area of your life, then you are in need of some self-forgiveness.
Yancy Lael (Soulful Skincare: The ultimate guide to radically transforming your complexion)
Christian leadership should include integrity, honesty, compassion, diplomacy, perception, common sense, and forgiveness. Serving as a Christian leader involves servant leadership, which is a radical commitment to their follower’s life that requires acting in love no matter what it costs that leader.
Scott S. Haraburda (Christian Controversies: Seeking the Truth)
Forgiveness tears down the ego’s walls of separation and reunites us as one. The anger and fear of the ego’s illusion disappear. There’s no more “he said, she said.” It all just lifts. It feels as though chains have been removed and you’ve been set free from a lifetime of terror. Why continue rehearsing the role of victim when you could be free and happy?
Gabrielle Bernstein (Spirit Junkie: A Radical Road to Discovering Self-Love and Miracles)
I should address the word “forgiveness.” It’s got a bad rap. It’s become patronizing, whitewashed, upper-middle-class, a suburban kind of word in our culture that is used more often to vilify than to redeem. It’s #blessed for the twenty-first century. I hate this because to the divine, it’s radical. This word sticks in my craw the way the phrase “love the sinner, hate the sin” does. When someone says, “I’ll pray for you,” I feel like they’re saying, “From my platform of purity, I’ll pray for your iniquity.” When they say, “I forgive you,” they’re saying, “From my position of righteousness, I will accept you even though you’re wrong and inadequate.
Brandi Carlile (Broken Horses)
Mercy is radical kindness. Mercy means offering or being offered aid in desperate straits. Mercy is not deserved. It involves absolving the unabsolvable, forgiving the unforgivable. Mercy brings us to the miracle of apology, given and accepted, to unashamed humility when we have erred or forgotten.
Anne Lamott (Hallelujah Anyway: Rediscovering Mercy)
Love big, forgive always, do good, and don’t be an asshole.’ That’s yoga, that’s a life well-lived. It’s really that simple. End of story.
Seane Corn (Revolution of the Soul: Awaken to Love Through Raw Truth, Radical Healing, and Conscious Action)
Looked at from a spiritual standpoint, our discomfort in any given situation provides a signal that we are out of alignment with spiritual law and are being given an opportunity to heal something.
Colin C. Tipping (Radical Forgiveness: A Revolutionary Five-Stage Process to Heal Relationships, Let Go of Anger and Blame, and Find Peace in Any Situation)
Our spiritual evolution depends heavily upon our recovery from our worst addiction—our addiction to the victim archetype, which traps us in the past and saps our life energy. The inner child represents nothing but a metaphor for our woundedness and a cutesy form of victim consciousness.
Colin C. Tipping (Radical Forgiveness: A Revolutionary Five-Stage Process to Heal Relationships, Let Go of Anger and Blame, and Find Peace in Any Situation)
A massive and essential part of self-love is forgiveness and acceptance. So while you’re making an effort and striving to be the best person you can be, at the same time you need to recognize your own humanity. Try not to hold yourself to impeccable standards, and just do the best you can right now.
Gala Darling (Radical Self-Love: A Guide to Loving Yourself and Living Your Dreams)
Forgiveness is a full time job, and sometimes very difficult. Few of us always succeed, yet making the effort is our most noble calling. It is the world’s only real chance to begin again. A radical forgiveness is a complete letting go of the past, in any personal relationship, as well as in any collective drama.
Marianne Williamson (Return to Love)
I remember preaching on Jesus’s call to the practice of radical forgiveness and being challenged by a church member who said, “Yeah, but the Bible says, ‘An eye for an eye, a tooth for a tooth.’ ” I had to explain to him that a Christian can’t cite Moses to silence Jesus. When we try to embrace Biblicism by placing all authority in a flat reading of Scripture and giving the Old Testament equal authority with Christ, God thunders from heaven, “No! This is my beloved Son! Listen to him!
Brian Zahnd (Sinners in the Hands of a Loving God: The Scandalous Truth of the Very Good News)
Therefore, the more we use Radical Forgiveness, the more the ego fights back and tries to seduce us into remaining addicted to the victim archetype. One way it accomplishes this task is by using our own tools of spiritual growth. A good example of this is found in the ego’s use of “inner child work” to keep us stuck in victimhood.
Colin C. Tipping (Radical Forgiveness: A Revolutionary Five-Stage Process to Heal Relationships, Let Go of Anger and Blame, and Find Peace in Any Situation)
The power of our activism, campaigns, movements, and strategies cannot forgive sins or raise the dead.
Michael S. Horton (Ordinary: Sustainable Faith in a Radical, Restless World)
Forgiveness is a radical act of setting your soul free, and the person you blame, hate, fear or resent cannot help you with that. Only your heart holds the key.
Anthon St. Maarten
The practice of radical forgiveness, the extension of compassion-this is grace.
Jiulio Consiglio
Mercy is radical kindness. Mercy means offering or being offered aid in desperate straits. Mercy is not deserved. It involves absolving the unabsolvable, forgiving the unforgiveable.
Anne Lamott (Hallelujah Anyway: Rediscovering Mercy)
We simply cannot engage with either the ills or promises of society if we continue to turn a blind eye to the egregious and willful ignorance that enables us to still not “get it” in so many ways. It is by no means our making, but given the culture we are emerging from and immersed in, we are responsible. White folks’ particular reluctance to acknowledge impact as a collective while continuing to benefit from the construct of the collective leaves a wound intact without a dressing. The air needed to breathe through forgiveness is smothered. Healing is suspended for all. Truth is necessary for reconciliation. Will we express the promise of and commitment to liberation for all beings, or will we instead continue a hyper-individualized salvation model—the myth of meritocracy—that is the foundation of this country’s untruth?
Angel Kyodo Williams (Radical Dharma: Talking Race, Love, and Liberation)
Living out this spiritual fatherhood requires the radical discipline of being home. As a self-rejecting person always in search of affirmation and affection, I find it impossible to love consistently without asking for something in return. But the discipline is precisely to give up wanting to accomplish this myself as a heroic feat. To claim for myself spiritual fatherhood and the authority of compassion that belongs to it, I have to let the rebellious younger son and the resentful elder son step up on the platform to receive the unconditional, forgiving love that the Father offers me, and to discover there the call to be home as my Father is home.
Henri J.M. Nouwen (The Return of the Prodigal Son: A Story of Homecoming)
Perhaps one of the most powerful things the contemporary church could do is to confess our sins to the world, the humbly get on our knees and repent for the terrible things we have done in the name of God.
Shane Claiborne (The Irresistible Revolution: Living as an Ordinary Radical)
The problem is that ideas about forgiveness are not forgiveness. They don't even help. What you are left with is the experience of resentment and the concept of forgiveness and a deteriorating relationship.
Brad Blanton (Radical Honesty: How to Transform Your Life by Telling the Truth)
Forgiveness is not just a selfish pursuit of personal satisfaction or righteousness. It actually alleviates the amount of suffering in the world. As each one of us frees ourselves from clinging to resentments that cause suffering, we relieve our friends, family, and community of the burden of our unhappiness. This is not a philosophical proposal; it is a verifiable and practical truth. Through our suffering and lack of forgiveness, we tend to do all kinds of unskillful things that hurt others. We close ourselves off from love, for example, out of fear of further pains or betrayals. This alone—a lack of openness to the love shown to us—is a way that we cause harm to our loved ones. The closed heart lets no one in or out.
Noah Levine (The Heart of the Revolution: The Buddha's Radical Teachings of Forgiveness, Compassion, and Kindness)
The yoke is hard because the teachings of Jesus are radical: enemy love, unconditional forgiveness, extreme generosity. The yoke is easy because it is accessible to all — the studied and the ignorant, the rich and the poor, the religious and the nonreligious. Whether we like it or not, love is available to all people everywhere to be interpreted differently, applied differently, screwed up differently, and manifested differently.
Rachel Held Evans (Evolving in Monkey Town: How a Girl Who Knew All the Answers Learned to Ask the Questions)
Like most people who decide to get sober, I was brought to Alcoholics Anonymous. While AA certainly works for others, its core propositions felt irreconcilable with my own experiences. I couldn't, for example, rectify the assertion that "alcoholism is a disease" with the facts of my own life. The idea that by simply attending an AA meeting, without any consultation, one is expected to take on a blanket diagnosis of "diseased addict" was to me, at best, patronizing. At worst, irresponsible. Irresponsible because it doesn't encourage people to turn toward and heal the actual underlying causes of their abuse of substances. I drank for thirteen years for REALLY good reasons. Among them were unprocessed grief, parental abandonment, isolation, violent trauma, anxiety and panic, social oppression, a general lack of safety, deep existential discord, and a tremendous diet and lifestyle imbalance. None of which constitute a disease, and all of which manifest as profound internal, mental, emotional and physical discomfort, which I sought to escape by taking external substances. It is only through one's own efforts to turn toward life on its own terms and to develop a wiser relationship to what's there through mindfulness and compassion that make freedom from addictive patterns possible. My sobriety has been sustained by facing life, processing grief, healing family relationships, accepting radically the fact of social oppression, working with my abandonment conditioning, coming into community, renegotiating trauma, making drastic diet and lifestyle changes, forgiving, and practicing mindfulness, to name just a few. Through these things, I began to relieve the very real pressure that compulsive behaviors are an attempt to resolve.
Noah Levine (Refuge Recovery: A Buddhist Path to Recovering from Addiction)
We become attached to each pleasant thought, feeling, taste, smell, and sound. But because everything is impermanent, we’re craving and clinging to fleeting experiences. Pleasure never lasts long enough; we can never sustain enough pleasure to satisfy the cravings. Suffering is the inevitable outcome of clinging to experiences that are unsustainable. Each moment of attachment or clinging creates some level of suffering in our lives as we grieve the loss of pleasure. What we often forget is that we have the power and ability simply to let go, and each moment of letting go is an act of mercy. The subversive act of nonclinging is an internal coup d’état.
Noah Levine (The Heart of the Revolution: The Buddha's Radical Teachings of Forgiveness, Compassion, and Kindness)
The beauty of Radical Forgiveness lies in the fact that it does not require us to recognize what we project. We simply forgive the person for what is happening at the time. In doing so, we automatically undo the projection, no matter how complicated the situation. The reason for this is simple, in that the person represents the original pain that caused us to project in the first place. As we forgive him or her, we clear that original pain.
Colin C. Tipping (Radical Forgiveness: A Revolutionary Five-Stage Process to Heal Relationships, Let Go of Anger and Blame, and Find Peace in Any Situation)
after letting go, there is forgiveness; after forgiveness, there is faith. My key now was a radical alignment with truth, a radical faith that in leaning into love and letting go of everything else, the path unfolds as it should.
Michele Harper (The Beauty in Breaking: A Memoir)
Do what you have to do. Make doing what you have to do a priority for your life, because if you don't, you leave yourself behind. You do not have to prostrate yourself at the feet of shame for one more minute or keep begging for forgiveness for being yourself. We need you. We need you to stop waiting to be ready. To stop waiting to act until you become the self you imagine you would be if only you were different than you are. We need your radical truth-telling, your willingness to speak from your heart, but most of all, we need the unrepeatable essence of you. Come back.
Geneen Roth (This Messy Magnificent Life: A Field Guide)
Seen in the light of the Easter dawn, the cross is revealed to be the lost Tree of Life. In the middle of a world dominated by death, the Tree of Life is rediscovered in the form of a Roman cross. The cross is the act of radical forgiveness that gives sin, violence, and retribution a place to die in the body of Jesus.
Brian Zahnd (Water To Wine: Some of My Story)
as humans, we automatically attach a whole string of judgments, interpretations, questions, and beliefs to situations. Our task involves accepting the imperfection of our own humanity and loving ourselves for having these judgments, including the one that says we must be a spiritually moribund person for creating this reality.
Colin C. Tipping (Radical Forgiveness: A Revolutionary Five-Stage Process to Heal Relationships, Let Go of Anger and Blame, and Find Peace in Any Situation)
Parents, if your eyes ever see or your ears ever hear the sin and weakness of your children, it’s never an accident, it’s never a hassle, it’s never an interruption; it’s always grace. God loves your children and because he does, he has placed them in a family of faith so that you can be his tool of convicting, forgiving, and transforming grace.
Paul David Tripp (Parenting: 14 Gospel Principles That Can Radically Change Your Family)
the core christian values- radical hope, universal forgiveness- are the core values of the book's final chapter.
John Green (Looking for Alaska)
Looked at from a spiritual standpoint, our discomfort in any given situation provides a signal that we are out of alignment with spiritual law and are being given an opportunity to heal something. It
Colin C. Tipping (Radical Forgiveness: A Revolutionary Five-Stage Process to Heal Relationships, Let Go of Anger and Blame, and Find Peace in Any Situation)
the real scandal is not the existence of sinners, for mercy and forgiveness always exist precisely for them, but rather the confusion between good and evil caused by Catholic shepherds. If men who are consecrated to God are no longer capable of understanding the radical nature of the Gospel message and seek to anaesthetize it, we will be going the wrong way. For that is the real failure of mercy. While
Robert Sarah (God or Nothing: A Conversation on Faith)
God always prepares you and gives you the signs when your breakthrough is about to show up on your doorstep: 1 The increase of compassion that leads you to a radical giving. 2 The heart of repentance that leads you to the heart of forgiveness. 3 The outpouring love that leads you to understanding and respect of humanity. 4 The overwhelming peace that leads you to calmness in the midst of the shakey grounds.
Euginia Herlihy
The truth is that there is no such thing as a negative emotion. Emotions only become “bad” and have a negative effect on us when they are suppressed, denied, or unexpressed. Positive thinking is really just another form of denial.
Colin C. Tipping (Radical Forgiveness: A Revolutionary Five-Stage Process to Heal Relationships, Let Go of Anger and Blame, and Find Peace in Any Situation)
We all know that rainbows are temporary optical illusions based on the factors of sunlight, moisture, and heat. The environment creates each rainbow like the mind creates a self. Both creations are relatively real, in that we can genuinely experience them temporarily; but just as the factors that created the illusion (whether rainbow or self) arose, so will they also pass. There is no permanent self; there is no permanent rainbow. It is not true to say that there is no self at all or that everything is empty or illusory, but it is true that everything is constantly changing and that there is no solid, permanent, unchanging self within the process that is life. Everything and everyone is an unfolding process.
Noah Levine (The Heart of the Revolution: The Buddha's Radical Teachings of Forgiveness, Compassion, and Kindness)
Through relationship we grow and learn. Through relationship we heal and are returned to wholeness and truth. We need others to mirror our misperceptions and our projections and to help us bring repressed material to consciousness for healing.
Colin C. Tipping (Radical Forgiveness: A Revolutionary Five-Stage Process to Heal Relationships, Let Go of Anger and Blame, and Find Peace in Any Situation)
To say I woke up one day and reached a point where I no longer cared about the pains to befall me would be a lie. Nor can I say that I have ever fully forgiven those who willfully did me harm. On a deep, internal battlefield, I wrestle with the thought that I have been robbed of any chance of normalcy by the losses suffered. Therapists and gurus alike tell us to, “Let go or be dragged,” as Zen proverb urges—to forgive for our own sake. But, in my experience, there is no letting go and forgiveness is transient. My inability to be free of it all isn’t for lack of an evolved consciousness on my part. I’ve “done the work” to process it all; rather, it is my irreconcilable, inescapable humanity that causes to clutch the pain close to me.
L.M. Browning (To Lose the Madness: Field Notes on Trauma, Loss and Radical Authenticity)
Let a man radically alter his thoughts, and he will be astonished at the rapid transformation it will effect in the material conditions of his life. Men imagine that thought can be kept secret, but it cannot; it rapidly crystallizes into habit, and habit solidifies into circumstance. Bestial thoughts crystallize into habits of drunkenness and sensuality, which solidify into circumstances of destitution and disease: impure thoughts of every kind crystallize into enervating and confusing habits, which solidify into distracting and adverse circumstances: thoughts of fear, doubt, and indecision crystallize into weak, unmanly, and irresolute habits, which solidify into circumstances of failure, indigence, and slavish dependence: lazy thoughts crystallize into habits of uncleanliness and dishonesty, which solidify into circumstances of foulness and beggary: hateful and condemnatory thoughts crystallize into habits of accusation and violence, which solidify into circumstances of injury and persecution: selfish thoughts of all kinds crystallize into habits of self-seeking, which solidify into circumstances more or less distressing. On the other hand, beautiful thoughts of all kinds crystallize into habits of grace and kindliness, which solidify into genial and sunny circumstances: pure thoughts crystallize into habits of temperance and self-control, which solidify into circumstances of repose and peace: thoughts of courage, self-reliance, and decision crystallize into manly habits, which solidify into circumstances of success, plenty, and freedom: energetic thoughts crystallize into habits of cleanliness and industry, which solidify into circumstances of pleasantness: gentle and forgiving thoughts crystallize into habits of gentleness, which solidify into protective and preservative circumstances: loving and unselfish thoughts crystallize into habits of self-forgetfulness for others, which solidify into circumstances of sure and abiding prosperity and true riches. A particular train of thought persisted in, be it good or bad, cannot fail to produce its results on the character and circumstances. A man cannot directly choose his circumstances, but he can choose his thoughts, and so indirectly, yet surely, shape his circumstances.
James Allen (As a Man Thinketh)
It has become clear to me during my workshops that a lot of the pain people carry is not their own and may go back several generations. Most frequently it is their parents’ pain they have taken on, but it might also be their grandparents’ or siblings’.
Colin C. Tipping (Radical Forgiveness: A Revolutionary Five-Stage Process to Heal Relationships, Let Go of Anger and Blame, and Find Peace in Any Situation)
It seems as though we Christians have developed a nasty habit of leading people into a radical encounter with God’s unconditional love, forgiveness, acceptance, and union only to spend the ensuing years teaching them how to become close to God to earn his approval.
Ted Dekker (Waking Up: To The Way of Love)
And so the Savior of the world directs us toward a re-appropriation of Lamech’s seventy time seven equation, applying it to the practice of radical forgiveness. The most remarkable thing about Christ-informed ethics is its commitment to forgiveness—indeed, if Christianity is about anything, it’s about forgiveness. So Jesus calls us beyond the ever-escalating revenge of Lamech and beyond the mitigated revenge of Moses into a world where revenge is renounced altogether. Jesus saves the world by turning exponential revenge into exponential forgiveness.
Brian Zahnd (The Unvarnished Jesus: A Lenten Journey)
By judging my partner, I kept our unforgiving dynamic alive. Once I released my judgment against her, I was able to take a huge step toward forgiving her. Take this time to acknowledge how you’ve been judging those people you need to forgive. Ask yourself, How have I been judging? F
Gabrielle Bernstein (Spirit Junkie: A Radical Road to Discovering Self-Love and Miracles)
The ambassador doesn’t have any authority in and of himself. He has authority only because he represents a king who has authority. Here’s God’s amazing plan. He makes his invisible authority visible by sending visible authority figures as his representatives. This means that every time you exercise authority in the lives of your children, it must be a beautiful picture of the authority of God. In the lives of your children, you are the look of God’s face, you are the touch of his hand, and you are the tone of his voice. You must never exercise authority in an angry, impatient way. You must never exercise authority in an abusive way. You must never exercise authority in a selfish way. Why? Because you have been put into your position as parent to display before your children how beautiful, wise, patient, guiding, protective, rescuing, and forgiving God’s authority is. This
Paul David Tripp (Parenting: 14 Gospel Principles That Can Radically Change Your Family)
You want to prove that the Bible is right? It is not done by self-fulfilling prophecies or by pointing to world events as prophecy fulfillment. That is not how you prove that the Bible is right. We prove that the Bible is right by radical obedience to the teachings of Jesus and by validating that Jesus' teachings actually do work and can make our world better. Let us love our enemies, forgive those who sin against us, feed the poor, care for the needy and oppressed, walk the extra mile, be inclusive not exclusive, turn the other cheek, and maybe then the world will start taking us seriously and believe our Bible!
Munther Isaac (The Other Side of the Wall: A Palestinian Christian Narrative of Lament and Hope)
It is important to recognize that the mechanism of projection does not just apply to our shadow side. We also project onto other people the things we like about ourselves yet have a hard time acknowledging. Thus we see in those people our own inner beauty, our own creative talent, our own intelligence, and so on.
Colin C. Tipping (Radical Forgiveness: A Revolutionary Five-Stage Process to Heal Relationships, Let Go of Anger and Blame, and Find Peace in Any Situation)
We’re not taught to look at what is going on and say, ‘Look what I have created in my life. Isn’t that interesting?’ Instead, we are taught to judge, lay blame, accuse, play victim, and seek revenge. Neither are we taught to think that our lives are directed by forces other than our own conscious mind—but, in truth, they are.
Colin C. Tipping (Radical Forgiveness: A Revolutionary Five-Stage Process to Heal Relationships, Let Go of Anger and Blame, and Find Peace in Any Situation)
Paul’s exciting and paradoxical proclamation is that “God’s folly is wiser than human wisdom, and God’s weakness is stronger than human strength” (1 Corinthians 1:25). He says that only Spirit can hold and absorb the seeming contradictions and allow us to see and to know from an utterly new and unitive vantage point, which is the deepening fruit of contemplation. Only Spirit-in-us can know non-dually or paradoxically and absorb contradictions—inside of and with God. Only God’s Spirit-with-us can fully forgive, accept, and allow reality to be what it is. Neither logic nor law can fully achieve this, but participation with and in God can. (This does not make logic or law unnecessary; they are simply inadequate to the work of transformation.)
Richard Rohr (Radical Grace: Daily Meditations)
There is not a verse in the Bible, however, that presents Calvinism’s radical idea that the sinner is incapable of believing the very gospel that offers him forgiveness and salvation, and yet he is condemned by God for failing to believe. In fact, as we shall see, the Bible declares otherwise. “All men everywhere” (Acts 17: 30) are repeatedly called upon to repent and to believe on Christ.
Dave Hunt (T.U.L.I.P. and the Bible)
Our failure to forgive others keeps us in bondage. When you fail to take the hard road of learning to love your neighbor, or your enemy, or the one who painfully wronged you, you will find yourself forever stuck in a pit that from time to time overwhelms you. Forgiveness is hard in the short term. But staying stuck in the pit of unforgiveness, while easier in the short term, is death in the long term.
Dan Lacich (The Provocative God: Radical Things God Has Said and Done)
True mercy toward others, as with true forgiveness, requires a Christian disposition. As Christ said, even the sinners love their friends. It is easy to show kindness to people who are kind to us. It is easy to be charitable to those who are agreeable to us. The completely counterintuitive, radical proposal of Christianity, the thing that differs from every other world religion and makes us look like fools according to Scripture, is forgiveness of our enemies.
Gregory Bottaro (The Mindful Catholic: Finding God One Moment at a Time)
Quote from Father Tim during a sermon given after the former priest was found after a suicide attempt. "      'Father Talbot has charged me to tell you that he is deeply repentant for not serving you as God appointed him to do, and as you hoped and needed him to do.         'He wished very much to bring you this message himself, but he could not.  He bids you goodbye with a love he confesses he never felt toward you...until this day.  He asks--and I quote him--that you might find it in your hearts to forgive him his manifold sins against God and this parish.'         He felt the tears on his face before he knew he was weeping, and realized instinctively that he would have no control over the display.  He could not effectively carry on, no even turn his face away or flee the pulpit.  He was in the grip of a wild grief that paralyzed everything but itself.          He wept face forward, then, into the gale of those aghast at what was happening, wept for the wounds of any clergy gone out into a darkness of self-loathing and beguilement; for the loss and sorrow of those who could not believe, or who had once believed but lost all sense of shield and buckler and any notion of God's radical tenderness, for the ceaseless besettings of the flesh, for the worthless idols of his own and of others; for those sidetracked, stumped, frozen, flung away, for those both false and true, the just and the unjust, the quick and the dead.           He wept for himself, for the pain of the long years and the exquisite satisfactions of the faith, for the holiness of the mundane, for the thrashing exhaustions and the endless dyings and resurrectings that malign the soul incarnate.           It had come to this, a thing he had subtly feared for more than forty years--that he would weep before the many--and he saw that his wife would not try to talk him down from this precipice, she would trust him to come down himself without falling or leaping.         And people wept with him, most of them.  Some turned away, and a few got up and left in a hurry, fearful of the swift and astounding movement of the Holy Spirit among them, and he, too, was afraid--of crying aloud in a kind of ancient howl and humiliating himself still further.  But the cry burned out somewhere inside and he swallowed down what remained and the organ began to play, softly, piously.  He wished it to be loud and gregarious, at the top of its lungs--Bach or Beethoven, and not the saccharine pipe that summoned the vagabond sins of thought, word, and deed to the altar, though come to think of it, the rail was the very place to be right now, at once, as he, they, all were desperate for the salve of the cup, the Bread of Heaven.             And then it was over.  He reached into the pocket of his alb and wondered again how so many manage to make in this world without carrying a handkerchief.  And he drew it out and wiped his eyes and blew his nose as he might at home, and said, 'Amen.'                 And the people said, 'Amen.
Jan Karon
What Herod realizes is that this Child and the message he brings of universal forgiveness and reconciliation with God do not offer a rival source of power and order but a radical alternative to what the classical world understands as “power” and “order.” They do not seek to replace him on the throne of his kingdom but to usher in a wholly new Kingdom, not providing “spiritual benzedrine for the earthly city” but replacing that city with a new one: the City of Man passes away, the City of God abides forever.
Alan Jacobs (The Year of Our Lord 1943: Christian Humanism in an Age of Crisis)
The teachings of Jesus, of course, cannot be separated from the actions of his ministry. His teachings evoked radical energy, for they announced as sure and certain what had been denied by careful conspiracy. If anything, his teachings were more radical than his actions, for his teachings played out the implications of the harsh challenge and radical transformation at which his actions hinted. It was one thing to eat with outcasts, but it was far more radical to announce that the distinctions between insiders and outsiders were null and void. It was one thing to heal/forgive but quite another to announce that the conditions which had made one sick/guilty were now irrelevant. Of course the teachings cannot be separated from the actions, for it is the actions that give concreteness and reality to the teachings. The teachings, like the actions, are shattering, opening, and inviting. They conjure futures that had been closed off, and they indicate possibilities that had been defined as impossibilities. For our consideration it will be adequate to focus on the Beatitudes because they form an appropriate counterpart to the woes, especially as Luke has presented them (Luke 6:20–26).6
Walter Brueggemann (Prophetic Imagination)
What Herod realizes is that this Child and the message he brings of universal forgiveness and reconciliation with God do not offer a rival source of power and order but a radical alternative to what the classical world understands as “power” and “order.” They do not seek to replace him on the throne of his kingdom but to usher in a wholly new Kingdom, not providing “spiritual benzedrine for the earthly city” but replacing that city with a new one: the City of Man passes away, the City of God abides forever. This Child marks the end of the machine, the end of the military-industrial complex, the end of force.
Alan Jacobs (The Year of Our Lord 1943: Christian Humanism in an Age of Crisis)
It’s not the task of the church to “Make America Great Again.” The contemporary task of the church is to make Christianity countercultural again. And once we untether Jesus from the interests of empire, we begin to see just how countercultural and radical Jesus’ ideas actually are. Enemies? Love them. Violence? Renounce it. Money? Share it. Foreigners? Welcome them. Sinners? Forgive them. These are the kind of radical ideas that will always be opposed by the principalities and powers, but which the followers of Jesus are called to embrace, announce, and enact. And the degree to which the church is faithful to Jesus and his radical ideas is the degree to which the church embodies a faith that is truly countercultural.
Brian Zahnd (Postcards from Babylon: The Church In American Exile)
There’s a story in Luke, where an apparently “good,” religious, and rich young man approaches Jesus, wondering what he must do to inherit eternal life. Ultimately, Jesus places a demand on him—sell everything and give to the poor—and we’re told the young man heard that and walked away, sad. I think for many of us who live in this society that is so riven with anger, even addicted to it, Jesus is giving us a similar demand: “Give up your anger. Because of what I’ve done for you, give it up, and forgive.” Sadly, our response is, “That’s not fair.” And we walk away too. One thing that strikes me about the rich young man story: Jesus doesn’t leave him with room to wriggle. The man will either do what Jesus says, or walk away. There’s no splitting the difference, paying lip service, or trying to split theological hairs. But we love to do this with forgiveness. Jesus tells His followers to forgive as we have been forgiven, yet we find reasons why this doesn’t quite apply in our situation. (Maybe He didn’t anticipate what I was going to have to endure . . . Does He realize what He’s asking?) But we don’t walk away sad, like the rich young man. Instead, we tell ourselves that we can live a Christian lifestyle, and integrate our own decisions about whom to forgive, and when. This is especially dangerous, because when we do that, we’re walking away. But we’re not aware we’ve walked away at all. We’ve just de-radicalized the very nature of following Jesus, because we think we know a better way.
Brant Hansen (Unoffendable: How Just One Change Can Make All of Life Better)
Jesus made it clear that he did not come to abolish the laws of the Torah, “but to fulfill them” (Matthew 5:17). The life and teachings of Jesus, then, embody all that these laws were intended to be. Jesus is what the living, breathing will of God looks like. This includes compassion for the poor, esteem for women, healing for the sick, and solidarity with the suffering. It means breaking bread with outcasts and embracing little children. It means choosing forgiveness over retribution, the cross over revenge, and cooking breakfast for the friend who betrayed you. As Elton Trueblood put it, “The historic Christian doctrine of the divinity of Christ does not simply mean that Jesus is like God. It is far more radical than that. It means that God is like Jesus.
Rachel Held Evans (Inspired: Slaying Giants, Walking on Water, and Loving the Bible Again)
So when Jesus comes along and says to us, “Love your enemy,” we instinctively feel how radical it is. He’s not just giving individuals a personal ethic; he is striking at the very foundation of the world! The world was founded on hating enemies, and now Jesus says, “Don’t do it!” When Jesus said, “Turn the other cheek,” he wasn’t just trying to produce kinder, gentler people; he was trying to refound the world! Instead of retaliatory violence; the world is to be refounded on cosuffering love. Jesus understood that the world had built its societal structures upon shared hatred, scapegoating, and what René Girard calls “sacred violence.” In challenging “sacred violence” (which Israel cherished in their war stories), Jesus was challenging the world at its most basic level. We cherish, honor, and salute sacred violence. We have to! We have a dark instinct that we must honor Cain’s war against Abel—and our own wars upon our hated enemies—or our whole system will fall apart. But Jesus testified against it—that those deeds were evil. This is where the tension begins to build. What Jesus called evil are the very things our cultures and societies have honored in countless myths, memorials, and anthems. It was this deep insight into the dark foundations of the world that Jesus possessed and his brothers did not. James and the rest of Jesus’s brothers and disciples could testify against symptomatic evil of greed and immorality, but they could not testify against the systemic evil of hating national enemies. This is why the world hates Jesus in a way it could not hate his brothers. Ultimately, Jesus’s brothers belonged to the same system as Caesar, Herod, and Caiaphas—the system of hating and seeking to kill one’s national or ethnic enemy. Jesus’s call to love our enemies presents us with a problem—a problem that goes well beyond the challenge we find in trying to live out an ethic of enemy love on a personal level. How can a nation exist without hating its enemies? If nations can’t hate and scapegoat their enemies, how can they cohere? If societies can’t project blame onto a hated “other,” how can they keep from turning on themselves? Jesus’s answer is as simple as it is revolutionary: instead of an arrangement around hate and violence, the world is now to be arranged around love and forgiveness. The fear of our enemy and the pain of being wronged is not to be transferred through blame but dispelled through forgiveness.
Brian Zahnd (A Farewell to Mars: An Evangelical Pastor's Journey Toward the Biblical Gospel of Peace)
Living in regret robs you of your confidence. Living in regret renders you timid. Living in regret kidnaps your courage. Living in regret weakens or steals your hope. Living in regret drags the past into the present. Living in regret even drags the past into the future. And for all of its remembering, regret can be tragically forgetful. What is it that regret tends to forget? Regret tends to forget the cross of the Lord Jesus Christ. On the cross, Jesus bore the entire burden of our guilt and our shame. On the cross, Jesus purchased, by the shedding of his blood, our complete forgiveness: past, present, and future. This means that we can boldly come to him in our failure, receive his forgiveness, deposit our regret at his feet, and move on to new and better ways of doing what he has called us to do as parents.
Paul David Tripp (Parenting: 14 Gospel Principles That Can Radically Change Your Family)
The historical Jesus . . . does not make any direct demand on us, nor does he condemn us for any deed we have committed against him. . . . I have done him no wrong and there is nothing for which he has to forgive me.255 I have never yet felt uncomfortable with my critical radicalism; to the contrary, I have been entirely comfortable. But I often have the impression that my conservative New Testament colleagues feel very uncomfortable, for I see them perpetually engaged in salvage operations. I calmly let the fire burn, for I see that what is consumed is only the fanciful portraits found in life-of-Jesus theology, and that is precisely the Christos kata sarka [Christ according to the flesh]. But the Christos kata sarka is no concern of ours. How things looked in the heart of Jesus I do not know and do not want to know.256
Konrad Hammann (Rudolf Bultmann: a Biography)
First, we must develop and maintain the capacity to forgive. He who is devoid of the power to forgive is devoid of the power to love. It is impossible even to begin the act of loving one’s enemies without the prior acceptance of the necessity, over and over again, of forgiving those who inflict evil and injury upon us. It is also necessary to realize that the forgiving act must always be initiated by the person who has been wronged, the victim of some great hurt, the recipient of some tortuous injustice, the absorber of some terrible act of oppression. The wrongdoer may request forgiveness. He may come to himself, and, like the prodigal son, move up some dusty road, his heart palpitating with the desire for forgiveness. But only the injured neighbor, the loving father back home, can really pour out the warm waters of forgiveness.
Martin Luther King Jr. (The Radical King)
The irony about a ridiculous command from God is that it will usually seem like the exact opposite of what we “should” do. When we’ve been wronged, our natural response is to retaliate, but God’s ridiculous command is to forgive entirely. When we’ve lost deeply, it makes sense that we’d pull back for fear of enduring loss again, but God’s ridiculous command is to push forward. When we’ve gained something, our initial response is to hold on tight to preserve it, but God’s ridiculous command is to give it away. These commands give us a revelation that God’s methods are often radically different from ours. It’s not going to make sense to us because we don’t see the way our story ends. All we see is an ask of faith from God that puts us at a crossroads between what is logical and illogical. Yet however ridiculous it seems, we must obey.
Sergio de la Mora (Paradox: The God Who Breaks the Rules)
What we are faced with in our culture is the post-Christian version of the doctrine of original sin: all human endeavor is radically flawed, and the journalists who take delight in pointing this out are simply telling over and over again the story of Genesis 3 as applied to today’s leaders, politicians, royalty and rock stars. And our task, as image-bearing, God-loving, Christshaped, Spirit-filled Christians, following Christ and shaping our world, is to announce redemption to the world that has discovered its fallenness, to announce healing to the world that has discovered its brokenness, to proclaim love and trust to the world that knows only exploitation, fear and suspicion. So the key I propose for translating Jesus’ unique message to the Israel of his day into our message to our contemporaries is to grasp the parallel, which is woven deeply into both Testaments, between the human call to bear God’s image and Israel’s call to be the light of the world. Humans were made to reflect God’s creative stewardship into the world. Israel was made to bring God’s rescuing love to bear upon the world. Jesus came as the true Israel, the world’s true light, and as the true image of the invisible God. He was the true Jew, the true human. He has laid the foundation, and we must build upon it. We are to be the bearers both of his redeeming love and of his creative stewardship: to celebrate it, to model it, to proclaim it, to dance to it. “As the Father sent me, so I send you; receive the Holy Spirit; forgive sins and they are forgiven, retain them and they are retained.” That last double command belongs exactly at this point. We are to go out into the world with the divine authority to forgive and retain sins. When Jesus forgave sins, they said he was blaspheming; how then can we imagine such a thing for ourselves? Answer: because of the gift of the Holy Spirit. God intends to do through us for the wider world that for which the foundation was laid in Jesus. We are to live and tell the story of the prodigal and the older brother; to announce God’s glad, exuberant, richly healing welcome for sinners, and at the same time God’s sorrowful but implacable opposition to those who persist in arrogance, oppression and greed. Following Christ in the power of the Spirit means bringing to our world the shape of the gospel: forgiveness, the best news that anyone can ever hear, for all who yearn for it, and judgment for all who insist on dehumanizing themselves and others by their continuing pride, injustice and greed.
N.T. Wright (The Challenge of Jesus)
The myth of redemptive violence is, in short, nationalism become absolute. This myth speaks for God; it does not listen for God to speak. It invokes the sovereignty of God as its own; it does not entertain the prophetic possibility of radical judgment by God. It misappropriates the language, symbols, and scriptures of Christianity. It does not seek God in order to change; it embraces God in order to prevent change. Its God is not the impartial ruler of all nations but a tribal god worshiped as an idol. Its metaphor is not the journey but the fortress. Its symbol is not the cross but the crosshairs of a gun. Its offer is not forgiveness but victory. Its good news is not the unconditional love of enemies but their final elimination. Its salvation is not a new heart but a successful foreign policy. Its usurps the revelation of God's purposes for humanity in Jesus. It is blasphemous. It is idolatrous.
Walter Wink (The Powers That Be: Theology for a New Millennium)
Radically new spiritual movements are cropping up, notably the “atheist” practice of Syntheism. And musicians are creating stranger and stranger electrical sounds and rhythms, mixing them with strained voices, as if to underscore just how mysterious, yet peculiarly familiar, it all seems. And fashionable, tattooed young female DJ s play that music on the dance floor, and we dance under flashing lights into the darkness and get high and drunk and make out, as the reality we thought we knew is being torn down and we plunge into the sublime and the unknown. And far out into the desert, under the clear skies of that luminous, open blackness lit by perfect stars, we find each other in an intimate, loving embrace. Without the slightest effort we converse for hours and all of reality melts away as we let go of our inner shields and. become one. In that timeless moment of forgiving embrace we lose ourselves and find ourselves, both at once.
Hanzi Freinacht (The Listening Society: A Metamodern Guide to Politics, Book One)
My hypothesis is mimetic: because humans imitate one another more than animals, they have had to find a means of dealing with contagious similarity, which could lead to the pure and simple disappearance of their society. The mechanism that reintroduces difference into a situation in which everyone has come to resemble everyone else is sacrifice. Humanity results from sacrifice; we are thus the children of religion. What I call after Freud the founding murder, in other words, the immolation of a sacrificial victim that is both guilty of disorder and able to restore order, is constantly re-enacted in the rituals at the origin of our institutions. Since the dawn of humanity, millions of innocent victims have been killed in this way in order to enable their fellow humans to live together, or at least not to destroy one another. This is the implacable logic of the sacred, which myths dissimulate less and less as humans become increasingly self-aware. The decisive point in this evolution is Christian revelation, a kind of divine expiation in which God through his Son could be seen as asking for forgiveness from humans for having revealed the mechanisms of their violence so late. Rituals had slowly educated them; from then on, humans had to do without. Christianity demystifies religion. Demystification, which is good in the absolute, has proven bad in the relative, for we were not prepared to shoulder its consequences. We are not Christian enough. The paradox can be put a different way. Christianity is the only religion that has foreseen its own failure. This prescience is known as the apocalypse. Indeed, it is in the apocalyptic texts that the word of God is most forceful, repudiating mistakes that are entirely the fault of humans, who are less and less inclined to acknowledge the mechanisms of their violence. The longer we persist in our error, the stronger God’s voice will emerge from the devastation. […] The Passion unveiled the sacrificial origin of humanity once and for all. It dismantled the sacred and revealed its violence. […] By accepting crucifixion, Christ brought to light what had been ‘hidden since the foundation of the world,’ in other words, the foundation itself, the unanimous murder that appeared in broad daylight for the first time on the cross. In order to function, archaic religions need to hide their founding murder, which was being repeated continually in ritual sacrifices, thereby protecting human societies from their own violence. By revealing the founding murder, Christianity destroyed the ignorance and superstition that are indispensable to such religions. It thus made possible an advance in knowledge that was until then unimaginable. […] A scapegoat remains effective as long as we believe in its guilt. Having a scapegoat means not knowing that we have one. Learning that we have a scapegoat is to lose it forever and to expose ourselves to mimetic conflicts with no possible resolution. This is the implacable law of the escalation to extremes. The protective system of scapegoats is finally destroyed by the Crucifixion narratives as they reveal Jesus’ innocence, and, little by little, that of all analogous victims. The process of education away from violent sacrifice is thus underway, but it is going very slowly, making advances that are almost always unconscious. […] Mimetic theory does not seek to demonstrate that myth is null, but to shed light on the fundamental discontinuity and continuity between the passion and archaic religion. Christ’s divinity which precedes the Crucifixion introduces a radical rupture with the archaic, but Christ’s resurrection is in complete continuity with all forms of religion that preceded it. The way out of archaic religion comes at this price. A good theory about humanity must be based on a good theory about God. […] We can all participate in the divinity of Christ so long as we renounce our own violence.
René Girard (Battling to the End: Conversations with Benoît Chantre)
CRT teaches that a person’s identity cannot be separated from the group to which they belong. If you are born white, you are labeled an oppressor regardless of your character or personal attitude; individuality is lost within the group you belong to. And if you are born white and you choose to defend yourself against the charge of racism, this only proves that indeed you are racist! Wealthy black Americans are not considered persons of privilege, but a white person born into abject poverty is considered a person of privilege. There is no room for individuality, kindness, forgiveness, or meaningful reconciliation. Even more importantly, in the purely secular application of CRT, redemption is viewed as separating a group from oppressors, not as the need to be freed from sin by the gospel of God’s saving grace. Salvation, in the radical view of CRT, is to gain power over your oppressors. Until the oppressed triumph over their oppressors, the conflict must continue. Pure Marx.
Erwin W. Lutzer (We Will Not Be Silenced: Responding Courageously to Our Culture's Assault on Christianity)
to affirm “Jesus is the sacrifice for sin” was to deny the temple’s claim to have a monopoly on forgiveness and access to God. It was an antitemple statement. Using the metaphor of sacrifice, it subverted the sacrificial system. It meant: God in Jesus has already provided the sacrifice and has thus taken care of whatever you think separates you from God; you have access to God apart from the temple and its system of sacrifice. It is a metaphor of radical grace, of amazing grace. Thus “Jesus died for our sins” was originally a subversive metaphor, not a literal description of either God’s purpose or Jesus’ vocation. It was a metaphorical proclamation of radical grace; and properly understood, it still is. It is therefore ironic to realize that the religion that formed around Jesus would within four hundred years begin to claim for itself an institutional monopoly on grace and access to God. Because the sacrificial metaphor has often been taken quite literally, we in the church have often domesticated the death of Jesus—by speaking of it as the foreordained will of God, as something that had to happen, as a dying for the sins of the world.
Marcus J. Borg (The Heart of Christianity)
Not long ago I was in Istanbul, Turkey. While there I toured the Topkapi Palace—the former royal palace of the Ottoman sultans and center of the Ottoman Empire. Among the many artifacts collected throughout the centuries and on display was an item I found quite remarkable—the sword of the prophet Muhammad. There, under protective glass and illuminated by high-tech lighting, was the fourteen-hundred-year-old sword of the founder of Islam. As I looked at the sword with its curved handle and jeweled scabbard, I thought how significant it is that no one will ever visit a museum and be shown a weapon that belonged to Jesus. Jesus brings freedom to the world in a way different from Pharaoh, Alexander, Caesar, Muhammad, Napoleon, and Patton. Jesus sets us free not by killing enemies but by being killed by enemies and forgiving them … by whom I mean us. Forgiveness and cosuffering love is the truth that sets us free—free from the false freedom inflicted by swords ancient and modern. Muhammad could fight a war in the name of freedom to liberate his followers from Meccan oppression, but Jesus had a radically different understanding of freedom. And lest this sound like crass Christian triumphalism, my real question is this: Do we Christians secretly wish that Jesus were more like Muhammad? It’s not an idle question. The moment the church took to the Crusades in order to fight Muslims, it had already surrendered its vision of Jesus to the model of Muhammad. Muhammad may have thought freedom could be found at the end of a sword, but Jesus never did. So are Christians who most enthusiastically support US-led wars against Muslim nations actually trying to turn Jesus into some version of Muhammad? It’s a serious question.
Brian Zahnd (A Farewell to Mars: An Evangelical Pastor's Journey Toward the Biblical Gospel of Peace)
When you said our engagement is subject to your family’s approval,” he ventured, “I hope you don’t expect it to be unanimous.” “I would like it to be. But it’s not a requirement.” “Good,” he said. “Because even if I manage to talk Trenear into it, debating with West will be like tilting at windmills.” She looked up at him alertly. “Was Don Quixote one of the books you read?” “To my regret, yes.” “You didn’t like it?” Tom gave her a sardonic glance. “A story about a middle-aged lunatic who vandalizes private property? Hardly. Although I agree with Cervantes’ point that chivalry is no different from insanity.” “That’s not at all what he was saying.” Cassandra regarded him ruefully. “I’m beginning to suspect you’ve missed the point of every novel you’ve read so far.” “Most of them are pointless. Like the one about the French bread thief who violated his parole—” “Les Misérables?” “Yes. It took Victor Hugo fourteen hundred pages to say, ‘Never let your daughter marry a radical French law student.’ Which everyone already knows.” Her brows lifted. “Is that the lesson you took from the novel?” “No, of course not,” he said promptly, reading her expression. “The lesson of Les Misérables is …” Tom paused cagily before taking his best guess. “… ‘It’s usually a mistake to forgive your enemies.’” “Not even close.” Amusement lurked at the corners of her mouth. “I have my work cut out for me, it seems.” “Yes,” Tom said, encouraged by the remark. “Take me on. Influence me for the better. It will be a public service.” “Hush,” Cassandra begged, touching his lips with her fingers, “before I change my mind.” “You can’t,” Tom said, knowing he was taking the words more seriously than she’d intended. But the very idea was like an ice pick to the heart. “That is, don’t. Please. Because I …” He couldn’t break their shared gaze. Her blue eyes, as dark as a cloudless midnight, seemed to stare right inside him, gently and inexorably prying out the truth. “… need you,” he finally muttered. Shame caused his face to sting as if from spark burns. He couldn’t believe what he’d just said, how weak and unmanly it had sounded. But the strange thing was … Cassandra didn’t seem to think less of him for it. In fact, she was looking at him with more certainty now, nodding slightly, as if his mortifying admission had just cemented the bargain. Not for the first time, Tom reflected there was no understanding women. 
Lisa Kleypas (Chasing Cassandra (The Ravenels, #6))
Notice that Jesus knows exactly who he is asking to lead his community: a sinner. As all Christian leaders have been, are, and will be, Peter is imperfect. And as all good Christian leaders are, Peter is well aware of his imperfections. The disciples too know who they are getting as their leader. They will not need—or be tempted—to elevate Peter into some semi-divine figure; they have seen him at his worst. Jesus forgives Peter because he loves him, because he knows that his friend needs forgiveness to be free, and because he knows that the leader of his church will need to forgive others many times. And Jesus forgives totally, going beyond what would be expected—going so far as to establish Peter as head of the church.11 It would have made more earthly sense for Jesus to appoint another, non-betraying apostle to head his church. Why give the one who denied him this important leadership role? Why elevate the manifestly sinful one over the rest? One reason may be to show the others what forgiveness is. In this way Jesus embodies the Father in the Parable of the Prodigal Son, who not only forgives the son, but also, to use a fishing metaphor, goes overboard. Jesus goes beyond forgiving and setting things right. A contemporary equivalent would be a tenured professor stealing money from a university, apologizing, being forgiven by the board of trustees, and then being hired as the school’s president. People would find this extraordinary—and it is. In response, Peter will ultimately offer his willingness to lay down his life for Christ. But on the shore of the Sea of Galilee, he can’t know the future. He can’t understand fully what he is agreeing to. Feed your sheep? Which sheep? The Twelve? The disciples? The whole world? This is often the case for us too. Even if we accept the call we can be confused about where God is leading us. When reporters used to ask the former Jesuit superior general Pedro Arrupe where the Jesuit Order was going, he would say, “I don’t know!” Father Arrupe was willing to follow, even if he didn’t know precisely what God had in mind. Peter says yes to the unknowable, because the question comes from Jesus. Both Christ’s forgiveness and Peter’s response show us love. God’s love is limitless, unconditional, radical. And when we have experienced that love, we can share it. The ability to forgive and to accept forgiveness is an absolute requirement of the Christian life. Conversely, the refusal to forgive leads ineluctably to spiritual death. You may know families in which vindictiveness acts like a cancer, slowly eating away at love. You may know people whose marriages have been destroyed by a refusal to forgive. One of my friends described a couple he knew as “two scorpions in a jar,” both eagerly waiting to sting the other with barbs and hateful comments. We see the communal version of this in countries torn by sectarian violence, where a climate of mutual recrimination and mistrust leads only to increasing levels of pain. The Breakfast by the Sea shows that Jesus lived the forgiveness he preached. Jesus knew that forgiveness is a life-giving force that reconciles, unites, and empowers. The Gospel by the Sea is a gospel of forgiveness, one of the central Christian virtues. It is the radical stance of Jesus, who, when faced with the one who denied him, forgave him and appointed him head of the church, and the man who, in agony on the Cross, forgave his executioners. Forgiveness is a gift to the one who forgives, because it frees from resentment; and to the one who needs forgiveness, because it frees from guilt. Forgiveness is the liberating force that allowed Peter to cast himself into the water at the sound of Jesus’s voice, and it is the energy that gave him a voice with which to testify to his belief in Christ.
James Martin (Jesus: A Pilgrimage)
Loving-kindness is the experience of having a friendly and loving relationship toward ourselves as well as all others. The experience of sending loving-kindness toward ourselves is perhaps as simple as bringing a friendly attitude to our minds and bodies. Typically, we tend to judge ourselves and be quite critical and harsh in our self-assessments, identifying with the negative thoughts and feelings that arise in our minds. Being loving and kind isn’t our normal habit, so training the heart/mind to be kind is a great task. Mindfulness brings the mind’s negative habits into awareness.
Noah Levine (The Heart of the Revolution: The Buddha's Radical Teachings of Forgiveness, Compassion, and Kindness)
The next step in the process of liberation is to break this chain reaction of suffering whenever life is unpleasant and feeling content only when life is pleasurable.
Noah Levine (The Heart of the Revolution: The Buddha's Radical Teachings of Forgiveness, Compassion, and Kindness)
It is not true to say that there is no self at all or that everything is empty or illusory, but it is true that everything is constantly changing and that there is no solid, permanent, unchanging self within the process that is life.
Noah Levine (The Heart of the Revolution: The Buddha's Radical Teachings of Forgiveness, Compassion, and Kindness)
Gramsci set out to provide a revolutionary blueprint that would pervert the Roman Catholic Church’s values of goodness and forgiveness into a mind control tool in the hands of the new Marxists. He knew that the working classes were defined by their Christian faith and their Christian culture. Christianity, Gramsci recognized, blocked the way toward uprisings by the workers against the ruling class. No matter how strong might be their oppression, the working classes defined themselves in terms of their Christian faith. Christian culture liberated the working classes against even the most repressive secular abuses. While Gramsci shared the world views of Marx and Lenin concerning a future “workers paradise,” he knew that it had to come about in a wholly different way than through violent revolution.21 A high priority item for contemporary radical Leftists, therefore, is to destroy religion, a competitor for winning the “hearts and minds” necessary for Marxist revolution. For the Left, worship of God must be replaced by a worship of man, or “secular humanism.
Robert Chandler (Shadow World: Resurgent Russia, the Global New Left, and Radical Islam)
Answer: “First, so that the longer we live the more we may come to know our sinfulness and the more eagerly look to Christ for forgiveness of sins and righteousness.” Even in the Christian life we need this first use of the law to drive us out of ourselves to cling to our Savior. “Second, so that we may never stop striving, and never stop praying to God for the grace of the Holy Spirit, to be renewed more and more after God’s image, until after this life we reach our goal: perfection.”16 “Because
Michael S. Horton (Ordinary: Sustainable Faith in a Radical, Restless World)
But “redemption” in the Bible and in Paul is not about the forgiveness of sins. Rather, it is a metaphor of liberation from bondage—from life in Egypt, from a life of slavery. “The redemption that is in Christ Jesus” would be better translated “the liberation that is in Christ Jesus.” We are liberated through him.
Marcus J. Borg (The First Paul: Reclaiming the Radical Visionary Behind the Church's Conservative Icon)
Jesus had not come only to forgive sin, but to liberate us from everything that could separate us from God and life, whether that meant crushing illness, dehumanizing poverty, or spirals of destructive behavior.
Derek Flood (Healing the Gospel: A Radical Vision for Grace, Justice, and the Cross)
It is forgiveness alone that has the capacity to break the chains of injustice and give us the possibility of a new future—a future unchained from the past and free of bitterness. The world of resentment and bitterness is a small, ever-shrinking world. It is a world of ever-diminishing possibilities. It is a world on a trajectory of collapse into the singularity of resentment. Unforgiveness has a devastating way of eliminating new possibilities. Everything remains chained to the past, and the suffered injustice becomes the single informing event in the life of the embittered soul. But the choice to forgive breaks the tyranny of injustice and the bitterness it seeks to create.
Brian Zahnd (Unconditional?: The call of Jesus to radical forgiveness)
Hope dares to imagine the future as a legitimate alternative to the vicious repetitions of the past. But the refusal to forgive is a toxic memory that endlessly pulls the painful past into the present. The toxic memory of the unforgiven past poisons the present and contaminates the future. This toxic
Brian Zahnd (Unconditional?: The call of Jesus to radical forgiveness)
This,” says John, “is how we know what love is: Jesus Christ laid down his life for us. And we ought to lay down our lives for our brothers and sisters” (1 John 3:16), for our neighbors (Mark 12:31) and our enemies (Matt. 5:44). For disciples of the Lamb, laying down our lives means laying down the sword of coercion and lethal force, and picking up the Cross of self-giving, radically forgiving love. This ‘ought’ sounds like law and obligation—and yes, Jesus calls it a commandment—but this is not a new religious ladder to climb. Rather, it is what you become when Love comes to live inside of you. What Christ asks is that we willingly receive God’s transforming grace and surrender to the impulses of Christ’s love in our hearts. Once we let go of the willful ‘No!’ in our hearts, this naturally supernatural process of grace simply unfolds.   Pausing
Bradley Jersak (A More Christlike God: A More Beautiful Gospel)
True generosity is measured not by how much we give away but by how much we have left, especially when we look at the needs of our neighbors. We have no right not to be charitable. The early Christians taught that charity is merely returning what we have stolen. In the seventeenth century, St. Vincent de Paul said that when he gives bread to the beggars, he gets on his knees and asks forgiveness from them.
Shane Claiborne (The Irresistible Revolution, Updated and Expanded: Living as an Ordinary Radical)
In describing Intertestamental Judaism from a Christian perspective, I want to make it clear that in no way do I see the differences between Judaism and Christianity providing even the slightest support for anti-Semitism, the darkest blot on the face of the church. Anti-Semitism is a fact of Christian history, but one of which I am ashamed. I believe all vestiges of it must be purged from our midst. Even anti-Semitic feelings are, in the Christian sense, a sin—a sin from which we must repent with that true repentance which produces radical change in our minds, emotions, and actions. We must seek forgiveness from both God and the Jewish people.
J. Julius Scott Jr. (Jewish Backgrounds of the New Testament)
The only way I am able to forgive another person is to remind myself daily of the forgiveness I have in Christ. I am compelled to forgive another, who is really my equal, fellow human being, because I have been forgiven by Christ, the Lord of Lords and King of Kings. I cannot and must not withhold from my equal what has been freely given to me by He who is my superior in every conceivable way.
Dan Lacich (The Provocative God: Radical Things God Has Said and Done)
The entire contradictory package of Christianity was present in the Eucharist. A sign of unconditional acceptance and forgiveness, it was doled out and rationed to insiders; a sign of unity, it divided people; a sign of the most common and ordinary human reality, it was rarefied and theorized nearly to death.
Sara Miles (Take This Bread: A Radical Conversion)
One need only look at the cross of Jesus to see how the Trump administration subverts this way of God. Jesus dies at the hands of the government and religious people for claiming to be the God of the marginalized, destitute, and left behind. His murder on the cross is a warning of what happens when religious leaders or the so-called pious and powerful align with political power. Jesus demonstrates on the cross that people are not won over through violence and domination, but through radical forgiveness, indiscriminate inclusivity, and enemy love.
Jonathan P. Walton (Keeping the Faith: Reflections on Politics & Christianity in the Era of Trump & Beyond)
Forgiveness, she continues, exists only between people who are qualitatively different from one another. Thus parents can forgive their children as long as the children are young, because the parents are their absolute superiors. Between equals, the gesture of forgiveness destroys the foundations of human interaction so radically that after such an act, there can basically no longer be a relationship. To forgive someone can mean only to forego taking revenge, to pass by in silence, and that is a fundamental leave-taking, "while revenge always remains close to the other person and does not sever the relationship." Revenge "remains close to the other person" because people manifest themselves to each other in speech and action. That is, even in their mistakes and misdeeds, people are people and form relationships. In the same entry, Arendt went even further to say that forgiveness between equals was a "sham event." The burden that someone has put on his own shoulders is apparently lifted, while the other, the forgiving person, must accept a burden and at the same time appear to be "unburdened," to rise above the other and his misdeed. Only thus can the wrongdoer be unburdened of his wrong action. No one, Arendt wrote, can be that unburdened.
Marie Luise Knott (Unlearning with Hannah Arendt)