Forgiveness by Frank Cottrell-Boyce - from How the Bible can Help Us Understand series, Publisher Darton, Longman and Todd, London.
Frank brings his prodigious talents to the service of the virtue of forgiveness here. His deepening faith and an evolving knowledge of scripture gives this guide much light. He combines secular literature and media with a very balanced and respectful use of the sacred text. He also includes the experiences and views of other peoples lives.
Jesus in the last moments of His life on the cross, dispenses forgiveness. Luke Ch. 23 v 34 captures the moment. 'Jesus said, "Father, forgive them; they do not know what they are doing." He forgives the screaming spitting mob and as some commentators add...and all humanity in the process. Moments later He turns to the criminal who has turned to Him and v 43 and ' Indeed, I promise you,' he replied ' today you will be with me in paradise.' (Heaven).
Frank brought up from my own unconscious as I read through his guide, a childhood memory. One of my aunties used to have a favourite party piece at our fireside gatherings...' I'll Forgive but I'll never forget.' I can still see her sad beautiful face in the lamp light. When growing and beginning to question I enquired why the song , ' Disappointed in Love ' I was told and advised not to ask any more questions. Ah! Love and Forgiveness.
The author treats the parables in a way that brings out this aspect of God's revelation. Christ is ' The Eternal Psychologist '. John reminds us in Ch.2v 25 that ' Jesus knew them all and did not trust himself to them; he never needed evidence about any man; he could tell what a man had in him.' The parables of Jesus are unique to Him and deal in a most vivid and revealing way with human behaviour. The teenage son is angry and just wants to grab his inheritance and go off to be free and enjoy life. The elder son is angry and feels hard done by and not appreciated. The Father in between understands anger and loves them both. Again The book of Job treats of anger but from another angle. We are all Job. The most sublime language is used to describe creation the is redeemed in Christ. In our Mass we say, ' all creation rightly gives you praise '
Frank Cottrell-Boyce guides us through Forgiveness and Love and on to a God who's essence is both of these combined.
I do hope that these Guides will be distributed in many languages. If so then The Scriptures will be known more and as a result Christ will be known more as well.
Frank Cottrell-Boyce is a screenwriter and novelist perhaps best known as the writer of the 2012 Summer Olympics opening ceremony, his sequel novels to Chitty Chitty Bang Bang, his collaborations with the film director Danny Boyle and scripts and screenplays for many films and television programmes, including Goodbye Christopher Robin, Millions, Framed, The Railway Man and Doctor Who.
The other books in this series are: Approaching the End of Life by Virginia Moffatt, Welcoming the Stranger by Denise Cottrell-Boyce and Illness, Caring and Disability by Bernadette Meaden.
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