With regard to God’s promise to forgive our sins if we turn to Him, If a person has committed a serious crime or sin against another and eventually does turn to God, but refuses to show remorse for the act toward the one they have committed the sin against, resulting in continuing pain to the victim(s), will God forgive that person?
This is a very hard question to answer as scripture does not give a clear answer to this question. In my attempt to give a biblical response to this question, I do not assume to know the mind of God, what He would do or not do with this individual as it is ultimately His decision;
“Who has known the mind of the Lord? Or who has been his counselor?” “Who has ever given to God,
that God should repay them? Romans 11:34-35
However, our Loving God does not keep us in the dark pertaining to His character or His expectations of us. His word in scripture does give us clear understanding of His mercy and when it is granted to us.
Scripture is very clear about the forgiveness of sins. It is mentioned several times throughout both the Old and New Testaments. Verses such as;
If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness. 1 John 1:9
In every commentary I have studied there is one key word that scripture speaks about that must take place in order for God’s gracious gift of forgiveness to occur and that is repentance.
Repent, then, and turn to God, so that your sins may be wiped out, that times of refreshing may come from the Lord. Acts 1:19
So it makes sense to try and give a definition of repentance. In the verse of John 1:9 given above it mentions confession of the sin. But does that act alone of confessing take care of it all? No, it does not. Anyone can say “Lord, I’m sorry” and continue in the sin even if they have believed they have come to faith in Jesus Christ. It’s the showing of their actions that automatically comes with true faith;
What good is it, my brothers and sisters, if someone claims to have faith but has no deeds? Can such faith save them? James 2:14
So it must be more than verbal confession, and that is this repentance that shows a truly change of heart resulting in the turning away from such an act which is ultimately evident by our actions. Here are two of the best definitions of repentance I have researched;
1. Deep sorrow, compunction, or contrition for a past sin, wrongdoing, or the like.
2. Repentance, which literally means to turn, is the activity of reviewing one's actions and feeling contrition or regret for past wrongs. It generally involves a commitment to personal change and the resolve to live a more responsible and humane life.
Given the specifics of the question my honest answer to this is, if the person who has committed this act is not remorseful resulting in the attempt to stop the ‘continuing pain’ as you put it, then no, in my opinion they have not truly repented of the sin and is basically continuing in it;
But because of your stubbornness and your unrepentant heart, you are storing up wrath against yourself for the day of God’s wrath, when his righteous judgment will be revealed. God “will repay each person according to what they have done.” Romans 2:5-6
As stated above, ultimately, It’s God decision if this person is truly repentant or not. He knows what’s really in the heart of man.