Is it biblical for a father to ask for forgivness from his children?

Question:

Our father made a lot of mistakes against our family, I told him that he should ask for forgiveness, but he said it was not biblical for a father to ask for forgiveness from the children. Is it mistaken from the point of view of the Bible that a father may ask for forgiveness from the children?

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“. Every earthly father must reflect the image of the heavenly Father in the relationship with his children.

I heard a case when the father, being under the influence of alcohol, hit his son who had done nothing wrong. That day, mother and son did not sleep at home. In the morning when they came back home and when the father was confronted in his pride, he did not accept and did not want to ask for forgiveness from them. I’m thinking how many things could have been solved if father had asked for forgiveness! For a long time, the child lived with bitterness and hatred in his heart against his father. Was it wrong or too much for this father to ask forgiveness from his son?

Negative emotions or parents’ hypocrisy can be crushing for children, but recognizing guilt before the child will mold repentance into his life and produce authentic character in both himself and his parent. It is not wise to cover up the mistake and not to confess it. By recognizing my mistake as a parent, I can teach the child the love of God that I experience in my life.

As a parent I understand that I am not perfect and my behavior is not perfect. I can hurt my children through shouting, anger, ignorance, injustice, etc. The Bible tells us that “for we all stumble in many ways” (James 3: 2) and if we are wrong, we must ask for forgiveness, be it our wife, our husband or our children. Recognition of mistakes towards children will help them understand that we are all sinners and that we need Jesus Christ who gave His life to forgive our sins and commanded us to forgive one another in love.

King David is known as “the man after the heart of God.” In 2 Samuel 13, it is reported the story of David’s daughter Tamar dishonored by Amnon. “King David heard of all these matters, he was very angry (2 Samuel 13:21).” As a father, David had to investigate Amnon’s request and prevent such incidents. Not only did David confront Amnon, but after Tamar is dishonored, David does not ask for forgivenes from her, nor does he apply disciplinary action to Amnon. Anger and silence – that’s what David did. After two years, Absalom kills his brother Amnon (2 Sam. 13: 28-29), then flees for two years. Absalom dwelt in Jerusalem for two years without seeing his father David’s face. And when Absalom saw the face of the king, there was no reconciliation involving the request of forgiveness from either the king or Absalom. David had to ask for forgiveness from Tamar and Absalom for the unconscious decision he made. Even if it happened, he had to make every effort now to build and maintain relationship with his children, and to stop the evil that resulted in Tamar’s dishonor: the death of Amnon and Absalom.

Here is an example from which we can learn: not recognizing the mistakes and lack of forgiveness is followed by serious consequences that destroy family relationships.

Asking for forgiveness or forgiving others is a principle that must be applied in all areas of life. In the Gospel of Mark 11: 25-26, Jesus says,

“ Whenever you stand praying, forgive, if you have anything against anyone, so that your Father who is in heaven will also forgive you your transgressions. But if you do not forgive, neither will your Father who is in heaven forgive your transgressions”

Whenever we make a mistake, or someone made a mistake against us, either we ask for forgiveness or forgive others, this is the condition of the person that experiences God’s forgiveness in his life. Asking for forgiveness is an action regarded by those outside the church as something weak, but not by the Lord Jesus Christ who came to give His life for our sins that we can receive God’s forgiveness as a gift.

If you have not been asked for forgiveness, forgive and do not live with bitterness in your life. Bitterness will make you lose your peace and will affect you both emotionally and physically. Joseph, who was sold by his brothers in slavery for twenty shekels of silver and endured much suffering and 13 years of imprisonment, later forgave his brothers.

But Joseph said to them, “Do not be afraid, for am I in God’s place? As for you, you meant evil against me, but God meant it for good in order to bring about this present result, to preserve many people alive. So therefore, do not be afraid; I will provide for you and your little ones.” So he comforted them and spoke kindly to them..” (Genesis 50:19-21)(NASB)

If you have not been asked for forgiveness, forgive and do not live with bitterness in your life. Bitterness will make you lose your peace and will affect you both emotionally and physically. Joseph, who was sold by his brothers in slavery for twenty shekels of silver and edured much suffering and 13 years of imprisonment, later forgave his brothers.

But Joseph said to them, “Do not be afraid, for am I in God’s place? As for you, you meant evil against me, but God meant it for good in order to bring about this present result, to preserve many people alive. So therefore, do not be afraid; I will provide for you and your little ones.” So he comforted them and spoke kindly to them..” (Genesis 50:19-21)

Asking for forgiveness or forgiving someone will bring unity and peace, harmony, healing, and mingling in relationships.

Translated by Elizaveta Bîrlădeanu