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The Moral GapKantian Ethics, Human Limits, and God's Assistance$
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John E. Hare

Print publication date: 1997

Print ISBN-13: 9780198269571

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: October 2011

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198269571.001.0001

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(p.222) 9 Forgiveness
The Moral Gap


Oxford University Press

This chapter examines what it means for one human being to forgive another. It aims to show that God’s forgiveness is both like and unlike people’s forgiveness of each other. It considers why the burden of past failures should matter to people when they cannot be amended. This chapter illustrates how an offender and victim can undo the past together and explains the connection between forgiveness and mutuality. It also evaluates the cases where the offender tried to do what is necessary to amend the past, but was not forgiven by the victim, and the reverse case where the offender was forgiven without doing anything to correct his mistakes.

Keywords:   forgiveness, God, past failures, offender, victim, mutuality

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