Talk Radio: Forgiving James Holmes for the Colorado Massacre?

Chris —  July 23, 2012

Image of Knowing the Truth Radio.Kevin Boling of Knowing the Truth will interview me tomorrow regarding how Christian forgiveness relates to the senseless murders in Colorado. The interview will be streamed live at 10:00 AM, Tuesday, July 23, and can be heard online here.

Forgiving James Holmes is a topic that we wish was not in the news. Yet, we live in a fallen world and in the coming days we will need to shut our eyes and mute our televisions often if we do not wish to encounter the image of James Holmes’ orange hair in the news.

So many questions quickly come to the fore. In the below interview, Justin Davis, a brave young man who was in the movie theater, is quoted as saying that James Holmes deserves forgiveness. Davis says (at about the 1:17 mark): “We should just forgive. We don’t know what he’s going through . . .”

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Justin Davis is obviously a brave and articulate young man. He should be commended for his courage and, most of all, for his commitment to bringing his Christian faith to bear on how he views this situation. I have children Justin’s age and my heart goes out to him.

Yet, Davis must also be shepherded regarding what the Bible teaches about forgiveness. Does Scripture really say that James Holmes deserves forgiveness for the Colorado Massacre? Should Christian victims say to James Holmes, “We forgive you because we don’t know what you were going through?”

As I have pointed out in the past regarding the problems with unconditional forgiveness, too many times Christians have proclaimed a cheap, therapeutic forgiveness that does not truly point people to the cross.

These are the sorts of questions we will discuss tomorrow during the interview. You are encouraged to call in with questions. A Toll-Free Number (1.888.660.9535) is open during the program to take your questions or comments.

If you are unable to listen to the interview live, it should be available soon thereafter in the archives.
See also:

The Forgiveness Quiz

5 Problems With Unconditional Forgiveness


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2 responses to Talk Radio: Forgiving James Holmes for the Colorado Massacre?

  1. I am so glad someone is talking about what forgiveness really is. It has bothered and saddened me for years that forgiveness has been cheapened amongst christians just like grace has. Now it has almost lost all sense of what the word actually represents and what forgiveness REALLY is. Forgiveness is a two part action that cannot occur without two people, the one repenting and the one forgiving. People espouse it in all cases of sin and evil, when it is actually the command of loving our enemies that comes into play when unrepentant sin has occurred. REAL forgiveness is not as easy as people flippantly claim it is, it is much harder and more loving to actually hold to the standard of REAL forgivness. There is a price. But real forgiveness is worth the price because it is powerful and beautiful. A part of the price is we are judged by others christians as being ‘unforgiving’. This is a very important topic because cheap ‘forgiveness’ can cause so much damage and lose out on the wonder and beauty of REAL REDEMPTION AND CHANGE. I’m so glad you wrote this book!!!

  2. Sally, thanks so much for taking the time to express your thoughts. I agree that when we point people to what the Bible teaches, when we often pay a price.

    As you know doubt agree, we must stress that forgiveness is gracious – – – meaning as Christians we do not insist that the offender pay a price (though restitution may be appropriate). But like any gift, forgiveness must be received. Christians should always wrap the package. But the gift must be received in order for forgiveness to be complete.