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The Unforgivable Sin

 

So is there really a sin that God canít or wonít forgive?   Well, when I was very young every so often some of us would ask our Sunday School teachers what blaspheming against the Holy Spirit was.  We called this the unpardonable sin in those days.   We never got a straight forward answer.  The reply usually went like this.  ďIf you have to ask this question, you havenít committed the sin, so donít worry about itĒ.  That answer never really satisfied me.  My guess is that our teachers didnít want to admit that they didnít  know the answer.

 

So I had to figure things out on my own, which can be dangerous according to some of my friends.   With the reasoning of a child I concluded that the unforgivable sin was a sexual sin.  I had good reason to believe this, because no one wanted to talk about sex, and no one wanted to talk about the unforgivable sin.  So because of the silence on both issues I just figured that both must be related to each other.  Of course my knowledge about both subjects was limited.  

 

A pastor friend of mine once told me that blaspheming against the Holy Spirit, or the unforgivable sin was ďattributing the work of Jesus to the devilĒ as seen in Mark 3.  I wasnít  really satisfied with that answer either.   The Pharisees accused Jesus of castintg demons out of people because they believed He was associated with the devil. (Mark 3:22)  I believe my pastor friend was on the right track, but he fell short in his explanation.

 

If you look closely at Mark 3:20-30 the Pharisees were doing more than attributing the work of Jesus to the devil.  They were actually attributing Jesus to the devil.  They were claiming that Jesus was associated

with satan, and not God.   By saying this they were denying the divinity of Jesus because  Jesus couldnít be God in human flesh and also be associated with satan at the same time.

 

Blasphemy against the Holy Spirit is simply denying the divinity of Jesus, and His divinity has a lot to do with the Holy Spirit.  The way the Pharisees denied Jesusí divinity was to associate Him with the devil.  Others may deny the Deity of Christ in other ways.  Therefore, not believing in who Jesus really is cannot be forgiven.  As Mark puts it, itís an ďeternal sinĒ. (Mark 3:29)

 

This only makes sense.  If Jesus called everyone to repent and believe in Him, why would He then say itís okay not to believe in who He really is.   If this was the case, all of what Jesus did on earth would have been in vain.  God could have just pronounced everyone forgiven without sending Jesus to the cross.  All of what the early apostles preached and  experienced would have been worthless.  And all of our Christian activity today would be meaningless.  If all sin is forgivable, including not believing in who Jesus is, then all are saved.  I know thatís a popular teaching these days, but itís just not Biblical.  

 

All sins can be forgiven upon true repentance and trust in Jesus, but believing that Jesus isnít divine, well, whereís the logic in saying thatís forgivable.  Besides, if you deny who Jesus says He is, you have to question everything He said, including His claim to deity, making all of His teaching questionable.  If He Ďs wrong on one point, then He could be wrong on other things He said. At this point the foundation of our Christian life falls apart.    

 

OF course if you repent and turn from not believing who Jesus really is, then you donít have to worry about this sin any more as my Sunday School teachers said.  The bottom line to all of this is that Jesusí death provides  forgive for all sin, except the sin of not believing in who He really is.  By denying the deity of Jesus you blaspheme the Holy Spirit, the One who descended upon Jesus at His baptism, showing Him to be the Son of God.  The Holy Spirit is also the One who speaks to ours hearts by convicting us of sin and pointing us to Jesus our Saviour. When we deny the One the Holy Spirit is pointing us to, we blaspheme or denounce the Holy Spirit as a liar. 

 

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