The Absolution

What about the Absolution?

Almighty God, the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who desireth not the death of a sinner, but rather that he may turn from his wickedness, and live; and hath given power, and commandment, to his Ministers, to declare and pronounce to his people, being penitent, the Absolution and Remission of their sins : He pardoneth and absolveth all them that truly repent, and unfeignedly believe his holy Gospel. Wherefore let us beseech him to grant us true repentance, and his Holy Spirit, that those things may please him, which we do at this present; and that the rest of our life hereafter may be pure, and holy; so that at the last we may come to his eternal joy; through Jesus Christ our Lord. (BCP 1662)

Can a priest truly pronounce remission of sins?

Numbers 6.22-7 – “The LORD said to Moses, ‘Say to Aaron and his sons, Thus you shall bless the people of Israel: you shall say to them, The LORD bless you and keep you: The LORD make his face to shine upon you, and be gracious to you: The LORD lift up his countenance upon you, and give you peace. ‘So shall they put my name upon the people of Israel, and I will bless them.'”

2 Samuel 12.13 – “David said to Nathan, ‘I have sinned against the LORD.’ And Nathan said to David, ‘The LORD also has put away your sin; you shall not die.'”

Job 33.23-6 – “If there be for him an angel, a mediator, one of the thousand, to declare to man what is right for him; and he is gracious to him, and says, ‘Deliver him from going down into the Pit, I have found a ransom; let his flesh become fresh with youth; let him return to the days of his youthful vigor’; then man prays to God, and he accepts him, he comes into his presence with joy.”

Ezekiel 33.12 – “And you, son of man, say to your people, The righteousness of the righteous shall not deliver him when he transgresses; and as for the wickedness of the wicked, he shall not fall by it when he turns from his wickedness; and the righteous shall not be able to live by his righteousness when he sins.”

St. John 20.23 – “If you forgive the sins of any, they are forgiven; if you retain the sins of any, they are retained.”

The Absolution follows the General Confession. It is carefully worded: “He pardoneth and absolveth all them that truly repent, and unfeignedly believe his holy Gospel.” Only those who prayed the General Confession in true faith and repentance are pardoned and absolved. Every congregation is mixed. Jesus taught, “But he said, ‘No; lest in gathering the weeds you root up the wheat along with them. Let both grow together until the harvest; and at harvest time I will tell the reapers, Gather the weeds first and bind them in bundles to be burned, but gather the wheat into my barn.'” There are both sons of the kingdom and sons of the evil one.

But the truly repentant are truly forgiven.

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