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In a Christian context, that has in recent years, emphasized forgiveness in almost a 'passive' sense, without demanding justice. Christian faith, nevertheless calls for forgiveness, but this is not the same as "letting people off the hook". Accountability is also a hallmark of the Christian faith. We need foundations for managing these two crucial elements in balance.In A Just Forgiveness: Responsible Healing without Excusing Injustice Everett L. Worthington explains how this can occur in the Christian life, and also in churches, homes, and in the broader society. Insightful, real, and poignant, this book promises to provide a great service to leaders, pastors, and laity as they grapple with how difficult forgiveness can be, and the shape it must take.
When serious injury or wrongdoing takes place, we cry out for justice to be done. At the same time, Christian faith calls for forgiveness and mercy. But forgiveness is often seen as letting people off the hook. Is it truly possible to forgive a betrayal, a rape, a genocide? How can Christians forgive without excusing wrongdoing? Psychologist and leading forgiveness researcher Everett Worthington demonstrates how Christians can and must hold forgiveness and justice together. He gives Christian foundations for understanding just forgiveness and dealing with wrongdoers. With concrete examples and field-tested exercises, Worthington shows how just forgiveness can be accomplished in families, churches and the world at large. This comprehensive guide offers practical resources for both individuals and communities, addressing situations from interpersonal to societal levels. Scripture tells us that righteousness and peace will kiss. Here's how we can respond to transgressions with justice, forgiveness and humility.
Everett L. Worthington Jr. (Ph.D., University of Missouri) is professor of psychology at Virginia Commonwealth University. He is a licensed clinical psychologist and former executive director of the Templeton Foundation's A Campaign for Forgiveness Research. Worthington has studied forgiveness since the 1980s and has published more than 200 articles and papers on forgiveness, marriage and family, psychotherapy and virtue in a wide variety of journals and magazines. He was the founding editor of and sits on the editorial boards of several professional journals. He has appeared on CNN and and been featured in award-winning documentary movies on forgiveness such as and He is the author of seventeen books including and
"Everett Worthington is one of the most respected psychologists in America. He promises a book that will be a 'thoughtful and thoroughly Christian exploration of justice, humility and forgiveness in the face of injustice and evil,' and he delivers. This book is a lifeboat for those drowning in the murky waters of theodicy. In it you will find compassion, honesty, wisdom and practical advice."
"This thought-provoking book highlights the positive role forgiveness plays in healing individuals and groups while allowing room for justice to be served."
"Emotionally honest and realistic, A Just Forgiveness offers a redemptive, clear look at the concepts of justice, forgiveness and humility. This book is universal in scope, but also extremely practical and full of real-life examples. Worthington has wrestled personally with grave injustice, and his own journey of forgiveness after personal tragedy is uplifting. A Just Forgiveness is a much-needed addition to the literature. I recommend it highly!"
"We are all broken and in need of healing--and healing comes through learning to forgive. From years of experience and research in the area of forgiveness, Dr. Worthington once again has written a book beyond compare that will teach you the steps to forgive justly, break free and move forward in your healing journey."
"Everett L. Worthington Jr. has devoted so many years of his life as a practitioner and student of forgiveness. He is among just a small handful of distinguished Christian thinkers who have made the topic of forgiveness one that nowadays is on the lips of almost everyone across our society and around the world. This book is a model of integrative Christian wisdom, lifting up a culture that so much needs to be transformed. Dr. Worthington stands at the pinnacle of creative Christian achievement with this outstanding book, one that speaks with love and clear thinking about that great gift that Christ brought to the world when he said, 'Forgive them, for they know not what they do.'"