To err is Human, to forgive is Devine

Categories: HumanReligion

Everyone makes mistakes, commit sins at some point in their life. It’s human nature to make mistakes.

But to forgive someone from those mistakes is indeed very hard. It doesn’t happen naturally like making a mistake. People are acting in a godlike (divine) way when they forgive. One almost have to be in a real holy place in their mind and heart to forgive someone. So the proverbs are trying to say “To err is human” is human to make mistakes. As humans, we think we forgive and forget but usually we can’t let it go that easily, which is a larger part of forgiveness and “to forgive is divine” means that it’s very difficult for a human to forgive. Man should always be forgiving as it is human nature to commit mistakes. Adam and Eve, who disobeyed God were punished and driven out from the Garden of Eden by God To err is human, to forgive is Devine is a saying expressing the idea that forgiveness is a worthy response to human failings or weaknesses.

The phrase to err is human, to forgive is Devine was first said by Pope Alexander. Pope Alexander means by this phrase is that while everyone can make a mistake, we should aspire to do as God does, that is, show mercy and forgive sinners. God does not demand that we be perfect before He will love us. He simply asks us to accept His guidance so that we can learn from our mistakes and grow in perfection.

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Christ gave his power to other men so the Church, which is the persistence of his presence throughout time (Matt. 28:20), would be able to offer a forgiveness to future generations. He gave his power to the apostles, and it was a power that could be passed on to their, successors and agents, since the apostles wouldn’t always be on earth, but people would still be sinning. God has sent Jesus to forgive sins, but after his resurrection Jesus told the apostles, “As the Father has sent me, even so I send you”. And when he said this, he breathed on them, and said to them, “receive the Holy Spirit.

If you forgive the sins of any, they are retained” (John 20: 21-23). For sin certainly does exist. It’s a reality which causes us to become separated and isolated from God. Particular actions can be, and often are, sinful, but sin is primarily a matter of values and attitudes. If the whole law of God, all the commandments, depends on this double commandment of love, love of God and of neighbour, then it follows that sin is basically a lack of love. The bible teaches us that God can and will forgive any sin, no matter how serious, as long we are truly sorry. The story of David and Bathsheba (2 Samuel chs 11-12) is a realistic account of serious sin, repentance, forgiveness, and of God’s attitude to the sinner. St Paul teaches, no one lives for oneself (Rom 14:7).

As the body of Christ, we suffer together and rejoice together (1 Cor 12:26-27). Because we share a common world, we are part of a network of relationships that joins each of us in responsibility to other and to all of creation. All of us are human. We all have our weaknesses and strength. No one is perfect. So when someone does something wrong to us, why can’t we forgive them? Forgiving that person brings out the holy nature that lies in human. It is not very easy to do it but once we truly forgive someone for his mistake we will feel an inner peace within our self. “All people commit sins and make mistakes. God forgives them, and people are acting in a godlike (divine) way when they forgive.” This saying is from “An Essay on Criticism,” by Alexander Pope.

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To err is Human, to forgive is Devine. (2016, Apr 01). Retrieved from

To err is Human, to forgive is Devine
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