Father Forgive Them....?

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Homer
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Father Forgive Them....?

Post by Homer » Thu Jun 18, 2009 10:17 pm

While on the cross Jesus prayed:

Luke 23:34 (New King James Version)
34. Then Jesus said, “Father, forgive them, for they do not know what they do.”


Did Jesus mean that God should forgive them absent any repentance on their part? What I have believed is that Jesus was asking God to bring them to repentance and thus to forgiveness at some point in the future. Some of the reasons I believe this to be the case are as follows:

1. If Jesus meant that they ought to be forgiven at the time He made the request, He could have done that Himself:

Matthew 9:6 (New King James Version)
6. But that you may know that the Son of Man has power on earth to forgive sins” then He said to the paralytic, “Arise, take up your bed, and go to your house.”


Thus it seems Jesus was requesting God to act to bring about repentance and, as a result, forgiveness.

2. In his Pentecost sermon, Peter accused them of being guilty of Jesus' death:

Acts 2:36-38 (New King James Version)
36. “Therefore let all the house of Israel know assuredly that God has made this Jesus, whom you crucified, both Lord and Christ.”
37. Now when they heard this, they were cut to the heart, and said to Peter and the rest of the apostles, “Men and brethren, what shall we do?”
38. Then Peter said to them, “Repent, and let every one of you be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins; and you shall receive the gift of the Holy Spirit.


So Peter put conditons on their forgiveness, and they were still unforgiven for Jesus' death. They must repent and be baptized. The remission of sins here must also include the guilt for being, directly or indirectly, responsible for the crucixion of Jesus. It might be argued that these people were not directly responsible, but if so they would be less guilty, not more, and thus would seem to have been more readily forgiven, yet they hadn't been.

3. Jesus said they crucified Him not knowing what they were doing. This does not absolve them of their culpability. Paul also persecuted the Church in ignorance and unbelief:

1 Timothy 1:13 (New King James Version)
13. although I was formerly a blasphemer, a persecutor, and an insolent man; but I obtained mercy because I did it ignorantly in unbelief


But the mercy shown Paul was not without his being brought to repentance. The mercy was shown by a direct intervention by the Lord which turned Paul around.

Repentance is a requirement of forgiveness:

Luke 13:2-3 (New King James Version)
2. And Jesus answered and said to them, “Do you suppose that these Galileans were worse sinners than all other Galileans, because they suffered such things? 3. I tell you, no; but unless you repent you will all likewise perish.


It is my view that Jesus' prayer from the cross was answered at Pentecost when 3,000 Jews repented and were saved.

I would appreciate any comments on this position.

Thanks, and God bless, Homer

Jill
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Post by Jill » Sat Jun 20, 2009 4:39 pm

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Last edited by Jill on Thu Feb 17, 2011 2:09 pm, edited 2 times in total.

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Paidion
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Re: Father Forgive Them....?

Post by Paidion » Sat Jun 20, 2009 5:19 pm

Homer, this is one issue in which I fully agree with you! This is somewhat rare, but nevertheless, it's great to have a few points of total agreement.
Paidion

Man judges a person by his past deeds, and administers penalties for his wrongdoing. God judges a person by his present character, and disciplines him that he may become righteous.

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Murf
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Re: Father Forgive Them....?

Post by Murf » Mon Jun 22, 2009 3:20 pm

I like your thoughts Homer. I have always had a question of the scope of the persons forgiven. Is it just the Roman soldiers who are following orders? This one sin will not be held against them.

One thing I'm not sure about is your statement:
Repentance is a requirement of forgiveness

I agree that it is a requirement for me to receive forgiveness from God. If I repent God is faithful and just and forgives me. I'm not sure it is a requirement for God to offer it unilaterally.

My wife & I had an interesting discussion on this very topic and I was going to ask for input on her view. She thinks Jesus was forgiving everyone for all sins for all time. Basically I think she sees his request as part of the process of Jesus taking on our sins for us.

tim

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Paidion
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Re: Father Forgive Them....?

Post by Paidion » Mon Jun 22, 2009 5:08 pm

Murf, I think how one views this is closely related to our concept of forgiveness itself.

If you haven't read our detailed discussion of this you might want to do so at the following link:

True Forgiveness
Paidion

Man judges a person by his past deeds, and administers penalties for his wrongdoing. God judges a person by his present character, and disciplines him that he may become righteous.

Avatar shows me at 75 years old. I am now 81.

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kaufmannphillips
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Re: Father Forgive Them....?

Post by kaufmannphillips » Tue Aug 11, 2009 10:54 pm

So - why does G-d ask G-d to forgive these people? If G-d's heart is to forgive or not to forgive, why does he ask themself to do what is already in their heart?
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"The more something is repeated, the more it becomes an unexamined truth...." (Nicholas Thompson)
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brody196
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Re: Father Forgive Them....?

Post by brody196 » Thu Sep 17, 2009 8:58 am

kaufmannphillips wrote:So - why does G-d ask G-d to forgive these people? If G-d's heart is to forgive or not to forgive, why does he ask themself to do what is already in their heart?

I don't get it?

As for "God asking God" to forgive these people...I take it you don't understand the teaching of the Trinity?

lee
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Re: Father Forgive Them....?

Post by lee » Thu Sep 17, 2009 4:46 pm

I've heard that this verse is an interpolation, which would actually resolve the issue quite easily...in other words, Jesus might not have even said this.

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kaufmannphillips
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Re: Father Forgive Them....?

Post by kaufmannphillips » Thu Sep 17, 2009 11:38 pm

brody196 wrote:
kaufmannphillips wrote:So - why does G-d ask G-d to forgive these people? If G-d's heart is to forgive or not to forgive, why does he ask themself to do what is already in their heart?

I don't get it?

As for "God asking God" to forgive these people...I take it you don't understand the teaching of the Trinity?
Enlighten me.
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"The more something is repeated, the more it becomes an unexamined truth...." (Nicholas Thompson)
========================

lee
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Re: Father Forgive Them....?

Post by lee » Fri Sep 18, 2009 5:05 am

Again, this could just as well be a later addition to this portion of the text. The oldest manuscripts do not contain this.

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