The importance of forgiveness in the bible
In the bible there are many references and teachings about the importance of forgiveness. But when we talk about forgiveness about what we are talking about? There is a parable that teach to us about the gift of forgiveness:
"There was a man who had two sons. The younger one said to his father, "Father, give me my share of the state". So he divided his property between them. Not long after that, the younger son got together all he had, set off for a distant country and there squandered his wealth in wild living. After he had spent everything, there was a severe famine in that whole country, and he began to be in need. So he went and hired himself out to a citizen of that country, who sent him to his fields to feed pigs. He longed to fill his stomach with the pods that the pigs where eating, but no one gave him anything.
When he came to his senses, he said: How many of my father's hired servants have food to spare, and here I am starving to death! I will set out and go back to my father and say to him: "Father I have sinned against heaven and against you. I am no longer worthy to be called your son; make me like one of your hired servants". So he got up and went to his father.
But while he was still a long way off, his father saw him and was filled with compassion for him; he ran to his son, threw his arms around him and kisses him. The son said to him, "Father, I have sinned against heaven and against you. I am no longer worthy to be called your son". But the father said to his servants, "Quick! Bring the best robe and put it on him. Put a ring on his finger and sandals on his feet. Bring the fattened calf and kill it. Let's have a feast and celebrate. For this son of mine was dead and is alive again, he was lost and is found"", Luke 15:11-24.
This father of unconditional love shares his fortune among his sons, and one of them asks for the inheritance to leave. What happens in the father is the aversion to the son's behavior: "Son, I cannot follow your way", the father responds. The aversion does not destroy the love bond, it simply obscures it, hides it.
If hate occurs, it is because the misconduct is shared, and forgiveness cannot occur. Who hates does not forgive. After a while, the son rethinks about the mistake and returns home. And it is here that the aversion disappears, the unconditional love is reestablished and the father forgives him, but always the basis of forgiveness is the rejection of the wrong behavior, the error. Forgiveness occurs because the error is amended and does not relapse.
The basis of forgiveness is the unconditional love and the wisdom to live, the book of proverbs reminds us of a beautiful quote about knowing how to forgive:
"Whoever would foster love covers over an offense, but whoever repeats the matter separates close friends", Proverbs 17:9.