Blasphemy of the Holy Spirit

This entry is part 370 of 394 in the series Inquiring Minds
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Why does God not forgive blasphemy against the Holy Spirit? Is there any hope for anyone who did that to be forgiven if only he repents?

Blasphemy against the Holy Spirit is taught by Jesus in Matthew 12:31-32 and Mark 1:28-29. The context explains much of why this is the unpardonable sin. Then we can understand how to apply it today and answered the full context of the question.

In Mark 1:23, the scribes and Pharisees, the teachers of the Old Testament to Israel who have the responsibility of knowing Scripture better than anyone else, accuse Jesus of having a demon because he delivers people from demons as part of his ministry.

The claim that he casts out demons by the prince of demons. Jesus goes on to explain a house divided against itself cannot stand. Why would the prince of demons allow Jesus to remove the demons he put on assignment in those people? It makes no sense.

Basically the scribes and Pharisees who are supposed to be so wise in the Scriptures make claims out of ignorance. But it’s even worse than that. Such a claim about Jesus blasphemes or speaks against his ministry and his person.

Jesus goes on to say that he will personally forgive anyone who does this and then changes their opinion of him after they believe in him (Mark 1:28). However, if a person makes this claim about the work of the Spirit it will not be forgiven (Mark 1:29).

Blasphemy against the Holy Spirit can best be defined as giving credit to demons the work of the Holy Spirit. You are literally worshiping a demon by giving it credit for the things that God is doing by his Holy Spirit.

It is unforgivable because it is a claim only someone who does not know God would make. To credit the works of God to Satan is to worship him. Anyone who knows Jesus and worships him would never do this. It is the final act of someone who is falling away from Jesus. The Bible calls it apostasy, or falling away.

It is the final step in severing your relationship with God. Or it is what an unbeliever who doesn’t believe in Jesus and doesn’t want forgiveness does. This is why it is unforgivable. It’s not because God doesn’t want to forgive the person. It’s because the person doesn’t seek forgiveness for what they say.

Our words have the power to carry with them the actions that they profess. If we speak against the Holy Spirit through attributing his works to demons, we are actually attributing his works to demons. This is the sin of speaking an action into existence.

We see the same context in Matthew 12:22-32. Jesus delivers a demon-oppressed man and Pharisees claimed the same thing they do in Mark, that Jesus delivers people from demons by the power of the Prince of demons (Matthew 12:24). They attribute the work of God to demons.

Jesus then challenges the Pharisees by asking who their disciples cast demons out by (Matthew 12:27). He then further explains that if he casts demons out by the Spirit of God, God’s kingdom has come upon them (Matthew 12:28).

He is basically saying that they are attributing the Spirit’s work through Jesus to demons. While there accusing him of operating by demons, they are attributing the work he does through the Spirit to demons.

Jesus forgives them for accusing him of operating by demons. But the Holy Spirit will not allow his work to be attributed to demons. Because those who blaspheme the Holy Spirit do it out of spite, unbelief, and a desire to mislead others about God, the Holy Spirit does not forgive the sin.

If the person were repentant it would be a forgivable sin. But no one who commits this send desires to be forgiven. This is why they sin in this manner. They do it in rebellion toward God, an act purposefully done against him and premeditated.

Once again, it is not unforgivable because God is unforgiving. It is unforgivable because the person who commits the sin of blasphemy of the Holy Spirit willfully does it against God, not desiring to be forgiven.

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