In die Skriflig
On-line version ISSN 2305-0853
Print version ISSN 1018-6441
MOLLER, Francois P.. Forgiveness: A Christocentric perspective. In Skriflig (Online) [online]. 2015, vol.49, n.1, pp.1-9. ISSN 2305-0853. http://dx.doi.org/10.4102/IDS.v49i1.1938.
Forgiveness is at the core of Christianity and is a gift of God in conquering sin and its destructive fruits. It is therefore important to understand the biblical principles and norms in this regard. This will be done from a dogmatic-ethical view that will be motivated by a Christocentric perspective. Central to forgiveness is what God has done in Christ to move towards us in brokenness and sin whilst inviting our repentant response. Christ has done a complete work in this regard, and therefore God is faithful and righteous to Christ to forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness. A Christocentric view accentuates God's initiative in forgiveness and necessitates us to differentiate between God's unconditional offering of forgiveness and his conditional applying of forgiveness. It is shown that this differentiation is crucial in the understanding and application of forgiveness as portrayed in the Bible. Christ is normative in offering forgiveness, and therefore it should be done in his name. Christ is also normative in the realisation of forgiveness and therefore he is the Subject of forgiveness, not a human being. In conclusion the problem of offered forgiveness that does not evoke repentance and confession is dealt with.