Buffy: He wants forgiveness.
Giles: Yes. I imagine he does. But when James possesses people, they act out exactly what happened that night. So he’s experiencing a form of purgatory instead. I mean, he’s, he’s doomed to, to kill his Ms. Newman over and over and over again, and… forgiveness is impossible.
Buffy: Good. He doesn’t deserve it.
Giles: To forgive is an act of compassion, Buffy. It’s, it’s not done because people deserve it. It’s done because they need it.
Buffy the Vampire Slayer – Season 2: Episode 19 – “I Only Have Eyes For You”