Josh Duggar: Have His Sisters Forgiven Him For His Sex Crimes?

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We're approaching the four-year anniversary of the day on which the world learned that Josh Duggar had molested five young girls, four of whom were his sisters.

At the time, it looked as though the Duggar media empire had come to close.

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It was impossible to imagine that such an ostensibly wholesome family could come back from something like that, particularly following revelations that Josh's parents had helped him avoid prosecution.

But the Duggars went into damage control mode with an all-hands-on deck approach.

Several members of the family sat for in-depth interviews with Megyn Kelly, who was then a correspondent at Fox News.

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Among them were two of Josh's victims, Jill and Jessa Duggar.

To the surprise of many, the sisters not only defended their brother, they even laughed off his actions, jokingly describing him as a "very sneaky" molester and claiming they did not know they were being victimized.

At the time, it was widely assumed that the sisters had been brainwashed or strongarmed into giving such a response,

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All these years later, however, and the official Duggar stance remains that Josh was forgiven long before news of the scandal went public.

“I have forgiven him and I feel that, but the trust is not there,” Joy said in an interview.

“I definitely have forgiven Josh. It is a process, though, that you have to work through in your heart,” Jessa echoed when speaking with People magazine.

Josh Duggar Family Photo

“And trust is not quickly rebuilt. It is something that takes a while," she added.

"We love him very much, though, and we are very hopeful for the future.”

So as far as we can tell, the sisters forgive Josh, but they wisely do not trust him yet.

It's good that they've remained wary, as many of them now have children of their own -- but does Josh deserve forgiveness?

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His parents went to great lengths to keep him from facing any legal repercussions, and he's seldom shown any remorse for his actions.

When word got out that Josh had used the website Ashley Madison to try and cheat on his long-suffering wife, the back-to-back scandals led the family to ship the former lobbyist off to a faith-based rebab center to be treated for sex addiction.

There, Josh endured long days of physical labor.

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He was punished, to be sure -- but had he been rehabilitated?

These days, Josh lives his life in a state of semi-exile.

He's in a different town than his parents, and he's banned from appearing on the family reality show.

There's been talk of Josh making a comeback, beginning with a cameo on Counting On -- but something tells us the Duggars are savvy enough to avoid that sort of controversy.

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