Once for all is the forgiveness granted through Christ’s giving of himself for humanity. No longer necessary is the older covenant’s repeated offerings of sacrifice for sins. Once and for all; it’s over and done. Yet, I may not find myself living in that reality. I may revisit, again and again, a forgiven sin, chiding myself for my past foolishness, or maybe outright viciousness, stewing over that which has already been reconciled.
Likewise, when it comes to forgiving, I may say “yes” because that’s what I’m supposed to do, but in my mind, I hedge my forgiveness, fearful that the one requesting it is not really serious enough in confessing or may be getting off too easily. Again, I can continually revisit a past forgiven sin, stewing in its causes and consequences with the illusionary assumption that I’m bringing justifiable hurt to the perpetrator when actually I’m bringing emotional, spiritual, even physical, pain upon myself in my refusal to let go and move on.
Once and for all is the forgiveness brought to humanity by Christ’s giving of himself so that I, too, can give of myself in receiving and giving forgiveness from and to others.
O God, our heavenly parent, forgive our sins as we forgive those who sin against us. Amen. — LDK