According to N.T. Wright (Jesus and the Victory of God) “Forgiveness of sins is another way of saying ‘return from exile’”.
‘However,’ (writes Robert Stein) ‘this is at best an overstatement. There is much in the Gospels concerning the great joy in heaven over one sinner who repents and receives forgiveness (Luke 15:7, 10). It is difficult to see in Jesus’ forgiving the paralytic’s sins (Mark 2:1–12), in his forgiving of the sinful woman (Luke 7:36–50), in the story of Zacchaeus (Luke 19:1–10), and in all the accounts of the forgiving of sinners the theme of the return of the nation from exile as being more central than the forgiveness of these individuals.’