And They Say Revenge is Sweet

Ye have heard that it hath been said, An eye for an eye, and a tooth for a tooth: But I say unto you, That ye resist not evil: but whosoever shall smite thee on thy right cheek, turn to him the other also. Many in today’s world would agree with Lord Byron’s verse “Sweet is revenge” (Don Juan, Canto 1, Stanza 124). Revenge appears to recalibrate the balance of justice and restore a damaged ego. There seems to be something mathematically fair, … [Read more...]

Oaths, Simple Speech, and Control

Again, ye have heard that it hath been said by them of old time, Thou shalt not forswear thyself, but shalt perform unto the Lord thine oaths: But I say unto you, Swear not at all; neither by heaven; for it is God’s throne: Nor by the earth; for it is his footstool: neither by Jerusalem; for it is the city of the great King. Neither shalt thou swear by thy head, because thou canst not make one hair white or black. But let your communication be, … [Read more...]

Some Patristic Thoughts and the REACH Model of Forgiveness


Early in the morning New Year’s Day in 1996, psychologist Everett Worthington received a call that would alter his life. It would also transform the work of a lifetime from the rarefied air of academia to the cruel practicalities of existence in a fallen world. He had just received a phone call from his brother that his 76-year-old mother had been murdered. Worthington had recently finished his book, To Forgive is Human. Yet, in the wake of … [Read more...]

Stages of Forgiveness, Natural Development, and the Human Will


Our lives are characterized by constant change. We move from helplessness to semi-independence, to autonomous living. We progress from barely being able to roll over, to crawling, and to walking. We learn how to speak by making sounds, then forming words, and finally, speaking in sentences. These are stages of human development that are common to all of us. Some excel further by will and by skill learning to dance with grace and write poetry … [Read more...]

It hath been said, whosoever shall put away his wife, let him give her a writing of divorcement: But I say unto you, that whosoever shall put away his wife, saving for the cause of fornication, causeth her to commit adultery: and whosoever shall marry her that is divorced committeth adultery.


Divorce is a tragedy. Two people united in love find themselves so divided in hurt that a relationship meant to last a lifetime lasts only for a season. According to psychologist Robert Sternberg, the love that holds marriage together consists of three components: 1) intimacy meaning sharing confidences and one’s inner life with another, 2) commitment meaning the understanding that the relationship is permanent, and 3) eros, meaning the … [Read more...]

Is Forgiveness Essential?


I think it should be clear from what we have discovered about forgiveness in earlier posts that forgiveness is beneficial at many levels of human life, physically, psychologically, socially, and spiritually. Is it at the same time essential to human existence? This is one of the important questions posed by E. Wayne Hill in his article, “Discovering forgiveness through empathy: implications for couple and family therapy” published in the Journal … [Read more...]