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Have I Committed The Unforgivable Sin?
What is blasphemy of the Holy Spirit? Why does Jesus say that it is unpardonable? Can Christians commit blasphemy against the Holy Spirit?
This week on the Straight Truth Podcast, host Dr. Josh Philpot sits down with Dr. Richard Caldwell to talk about a group of verses found in Matthew 12. In this text, Jesus has what appears to be a damning discussion with the religious leaders of Israel. He speaks to them about blaspheming the Holy Spirit and states that anyone who commits this will never have forgiveness. Many Christians are aware of this saying and often find themselves caught up in fear and dread over something that they may have done before or after accepting Christ. This thinking can even escalate to where believers believe they aren’t saved. Dr. Philpot asks Dr. Caldwell to explain this text in Matthew and help us understand what Jesus means by what He says here.
Dr. Caldwell first explains that when we talk about blasphemy, what we are speaking about is something that is insulting to an outrageous degree. As it relates to God, this involves our thoughts and attitudes. It involves words that insult Him, words that are dismissive, and words that mock Him. This passage involves words that are spoken. The Lord Jesus says there is a kind of speech against the Holy Spirit of God that will not be forgiven. It is of such kind that it will not be forgiven either in this age or in the age to come; it is an eternal sin. Dr. Caldwell says that due to the nature of these words in their context, he isn’t certain that this particular sin can be committed.
We have Jesus Christ, the eternal Son of God, working miracles and performing signs in the power of the Holy Spirit. God, the Father, attesting to His Son, the Messiah, by what He does. Those people had been eyewitnesses of these things. But instead of recognizing the source of Jesus’ power, believing that He was the Messiah, and accepting Him as God’s Son, the religious leaders deliberately chose to deny the truth. They verbally attack Him by slandering Him and attributing what He has done to the power of Satan. Dr. Caldwell says he sees this really as an unrepeatable set of circumstances.
Second, Dr. Caldwell shares with us the circumstances surrounding the salvation of the Apostle Paul. Before being saved, Paul was a Christian persecuting, Christ-hating, religious zealot. He ravaged Christ’s Church, entering house after house, dragging off men and women putting them in prison. Paul, himself shares that he was the chief of sinners, a blasphemer, a persecutor, and a violent aggressor, doing these things in ignorance before being saved.
So, says Dr. Caldwell, you can get Jesus wrong in one part of your life story yet be forgiven. You can get Him right, come to faith, and be saved before you die. But if you hear the truth and receive such light that you know who Christ is and are unwilling to admit it, you close your eyes and reject it; what more can be given to you? Dr. Caldwell says he thinks this is the danger. If you receive the fullness of the Light of Christ, the fullness of revelation, and then reject Him, there is nowhere else to go; there is no hope for such a soul.
Third, Dr. Caldwell points out that the Lord never gives evidence when someone has committed this sin. Christ gives it as a warning without any attempt to quantify it. Dr. Caldwell shares that there are other similar warnings, post-resurrection and post ascension, in the book of Hebrews. The Word here teaches we can’t receive the truth, be enlightened by it, know what the truth is and go on rejecting it anyway. The warning is clear there is nothing left for the person who does this but judgment. Dr. Caldwell says there is a similarity to that warning found in Matthew 12 but cannot say it is the same sin that Jesus describes. However, if you care about whether you have committed this sin, you haven’t. Because what is envisioned, there, is someone who sees, and then with viciousness and blasphemy, rejects the truth.
Lastly, he reminds us to remember the character of God. God is not cruel; He is good. He is loving, compassionate, and delights in mercy. God desires that no one should perish but for all to come to repentance and salvation. He has revealed Himself to the extent that in Christ Jesus, we had God with man; Immanuel. He came to us in the person of His Son, revealing how we can be saved. So if there is this fear in us, we need to go to the gospel. We need to hear God’s promises, hear His pleadings, and believe.
We need to repent and believe in the Lord Jesus Christ. Yes, the gospel is a command, but it comes with the promise that everyone who believes in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ will be saved. Know this then, if you believe, you are saved by grace alone, through faith alone, in Christ alone. You can rest your mind, heart, and eternity on the surety of the promises of God. So believe in the Lord Jesus Christ, and you will be saved.
About The Straight Truth Podcast
The Straight Truth Podcast: Christian Opinions in an Increasingly Secular World. Join Dr. Richard Caldwell, Dr. Josh Philpot, and their guests as they discuss news events, current affairs, and cultural issues from a Biblical point of view. Find the truth at www.straighttruth.net
The Straight Truth Podcast is a weekly opinion show hosted by Dr. Richard Caldwell and Dr. Josh Philpot. Straight Truth is available as an audio podcast on iTunes or as a video podcast through YouTube or Vimeo. The duration of the podcast is approximately 10 minutes. We release new episodes every Thursday.
The topics discussed in the Straight Truth Podcast are current events, matters that challenge traditional Christian values, and questions submitted by audience members. Dr. Caldwell, Dr. Philpot, and their guests seek to answer these questions with Biblical truths and from a Christian conservative point of view. The Holy Bible is the inspired, infallible, and inerrant Word of God; it alone is and will be the basis and authority of
answering any and all questions.
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