…The New Testament suggests that there is nothing more paschal in character, nothing more closely aligned with the great transitus of Jesus’ death and resurrection, than the transitional moment represented by our repentance and God’s forgiveness, which brings new life out of the death we’ve constructed for ourselves.
Rowan Williams noted in his book Resurrection that the disciples’ experience of resurrection was inextricably linked to their own desertion of him and their failure as his friends. When they encountered the risen Lord they experienced forgiveness. “If forgiveness is liberation, it is also a recovery of the past in hope, a return of memory, in which what is potentially threatening, destructive, despair-inducing, in the past is transfigured into the ground of hope” (32).
“On the far side of the resurrection, vocation and forgiveness occur together, always and inseparably …. To know that Jesus still invites is to know that he accepts, forgives, bears and absorbs the hurt done: to hear the invitation is to know oneself forgiven, and vice versa” (35-36).
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