One aspect of forgiveness that causes some confusion–and thus adds to the picking–is the association of forgiveness with punishment. In a juridical context, sure, forgiveness means not receiving punishment. However, experiencing consequences is not the same as being punished. God forgives us our sin, yet we still experience many of the consequences of our sins. This is an aspect of human freedom. Freedom wouldn’t be real if consequences were not real. If I chose to go left, but experienced the consequences of the path on the right, then I never had a real choice. While forgiveness averts punishment, it doesn’t change consequence.
“Fr. Michael Gillis”
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