Restitution and Forgiveness
Read pp. 458-463 in Institutes of Biblical Law.
corresponding Rushdoony lectures
Listen to the R. J. Rushdoony lecture, Restitution and Forgiveness, that corresponds with this section.
Video summary lecture (Andrea Schwartz)
questions for thought & discussion
1. Rushdoony makes the distinction between forgiven sin and forgiven sins. Christ’s death on the cross accomplished what? What did his resurrection accomplish?
2. What statement about its own sovereignty is the state making when in criminal proceedings the phrasing is “The state of California against.....”? Who does the state require restitution of?
3. Rushdoony stated, “Criminal law no longer has more than survivals of the principle of restitution; civil suit must now be filed by an offended party to recover damages, and then without regard to Biblical principle.” Explain what he means.
4. How are forgiveness and restitution dependent upon the definition of what is lawful and what is not? Describe aspects of forgiveness and restitution from a humanistic perspective.
5. Why is “I’m sorry” a sorry substitute for restitution? How do we foster an anemic version of forgiveness in dealing with the offenses of children?
6. If as a result of “soul searching” one discovers areas in his/her past where theft occurred, how should the principle of restitution be applied?
One of the surest ways to identify whether you understand a subject is to write a point of view paper (sometimes referred to as a position paper). This exercise helps to unearth areas of confusion, uncertainty, and/or disagreement, many times revealing that a number of unanswered questions remain. Once completed, you may submit your paper for comments.
After formulating your position(s) on the subjects covered in each lesson, a good next step is to engage in conversation (with your spouse, children, parents, friends, or co-workers) to better hone your skill in communicating the concepts you have learned and are assimilating into your own thinking. Do not be concerned about “messing up” or doing it the “wrong way” as you will do plenty of both! As with anything worth doing, practice will refine this skill, which is vital in order to fulfill the Great Commission. If you find you need some one-on-one interaction, you may submit a question or request an appointment.