Forgiveness in Greek literally means, “untying a knot” so that both perpertrator and victim are free from hurt or shame. So an act of forgiveness is actually a mutual liberation. Both sides are forever changed by it. It doesn’t replace justice, but it does move us beyond the feeling that retribution is enough (which it isn’t since we can never get back what has been lost). Forgiveness grants both parties to be equal again and paves the way for atonement.