"I do not think that in the mouth of Jesus Christ repentance has the force of a condition but rather of a route. Jesus seems to me to be a penetrating and realistic observer of men, who describes things as they take place. Certainly, in the parable of the prodigal son what happened was that the son repented and as a sequel to his repentance he returned home; he then found that his father had already forgiven him in advance, and without any conditions. . . . Forgiveness leapt spontaneously from the father's heart, for indeed it had never been absent from it."
Paul Tournier, Guilt & Grace, page 190.