preacherman

Thursday, November 06, 2008

Blasphemy-The Eternal Sin?

In my years of ministry I have had from time to time Christians come into my office wondering and stressed out that they have committed the unforgivable sin. The Christians who had believed that they had committed this eternal sin wanted to repent and change their life in becoming a better believer. As they had this desire in their life I assured them that they had not committed this sin.

The questions I want us to look at and discuss are: What is blasphemy? Why do so many Christians think that they have committed this sin? Why is blasphemy unforgivable? Do you think we stress the seriousness of this sin in churches today? Do think it is important for clergy and other leaders in the church to educate believers about blasphemy? Why? How would that help their spiritual life? Would it remove guilt that many have today in believing they have committed this sin? Have you personally felt as if you have committed this sin? Why do so many believers think that they have committed it? What do you think can be done in dealing with this subject? What are other sins that Christians treat as unforgivable (ie: homosexuality and divorce)?

What do you think?
Share your thoughts.

35 Comments:

Blogger Jared Henry said...

Below is the outline of a sermon that I preached on this topic...

http://jhsermons.blogspot.com/2008/09/unpardonable-sin.html

11:59 AM  
Blogger preacherman said...

Jared,
Thank you so much for sharing this with me and my readers. I appreciate you stopping by and want you to know that your thoughts and comments are welcome any time.

12:53 PM  
Blogger cwinwc said...

To be honest and I might be the odd ball of the folks who leave comments, I've never had someone tell me they've committed "blasphemy."

I am interested in the discussion though. Which I could add something.

1:20 PM  
Blogger jeleasure said...

Precherman,
Thanks for the invitation to write my thoughts.
There is one place in the Gospels that outlines what the Pharisees considered to be blaspheme. It is Mark 2:7.
In Mark 2:7, the Pharisees respond to Jesus forgiveness of sin, by asking who this man thinks he is. Only God can forgive sin.
So, you see, taking the roll of God in anything we do can and should be considered blasphemous.
I read jared's notes on blasphemy, my ideas agree when Jared speaks of speaking or acting in a way that displays contempt or irreverence for God.

6:15 PM  
Blogger Kansas Bob said...

When I think of this topic I think of what Steven said to the religious folks of his day in Acts 7:

"You stiff-necked people, with uncircumcised hearts and ears! You are just like your fathers: You always resist the Holy Spirit!"

6:17 PM  
Blogger laymond said...

Mat 12:31 Wherefore I say unto you, All manner of sin and blasphemy shall be forgiven unto men: but the blasphemy [against] the [Holy] Ghost shall not be forgiven unto men.

βλασφημία blasphēmia
1) slander, detraction, speech injurious, to another's good name
2) impious and reproachful speech injurious to divine majesty

Mat 12:32 And whosoever speaketh a word against the Son of man, it shall be forgiven him: but whosoever speaketh against the Holy Ghost, it shall not be forgiven him, neither in this world, neither in the [world] to come.

9:07 PM  
Blogger Bob Bliss said...

Kinney, I've had people worry that they have committed an unpardonable sin but they usually don't think of it in terms of blasphemy.

I don't think that it is the sin itself which is unpardonable. I think it is our lack of trust. In these passages Jesus is dealing with people who are denying the message of forgiveness from the Spirit. Once you deny the message, then how will you find forgiveness? If David could commit adultery and then murder, forgiveness is available to everyone and anyone.

I worry that I might drift outside the boundaries of forgiveness. When that happens I realize that the problem is I don't trust God. The solution isn't to bolster my determination but to go back and get to know God better. The more I know Him the more I trust Him and His forgiveness and the less I worry about having committed the unpardonable sin.

6:37 AM  
Blogger Royce Ogle said...

In my view that best way to combat error is to teach truth. Christians who are worried that they might have done something so terrible that they will be guilty of committing the "unpardonable sin" have not been taught the doctrine of Justification.

What is the grevious sin? (unpardonable sin) Romans 1:18-28 describes such people. And, Romans 2:5-11 speaks of the same sort of people who reject the truth of God (brought to man by the Holy Spirit) and choose their own way. They are bound to perish.

There is no clear example of people who violated the passages correctly quoted by Laymond. Most people who teach on this use 1st Opinions 12:4

Royce

Royce

2:08 PM  
Blogger laymond said...

Preacherman ; let me explain the following scripture in the simple way in which I read the bible.
Mat 12:32 And whosoever speaketh a word against the Son of man, it shall be forgiven him: but whosoever speaketh against the Holy Ghost, it shall not be forgiven him, neither in this world, neither in the [world] to come.
The way I see it. If we go out and speak against the Holy Spirit, whether it be to believers, who we convince and they become non-believers, or to non-believers who we put a stumbling block in their way so they will never become believers.
why should we ever be forgiven, while they remain condemned, by our teachings. I believe those who teach atheism should be concerned.

6:05 PM  
OpenID lmouser said...

Although blasphemy is listed as the unpardonable sin, what sin is pardonable if we die without accepting God!

Larry

7:50 PM  
Blogger Royce Ogle said...

John Piper's treatment of this subject makes more sense than any I have seen.

Go to: http://74.125.45.104/search?q=cache:L5K7pcYo_QEJ:www.soundofgrace.com/piper84/040184m.htm+blasphemy+of+the+holy+spirit,+john+piper&hl=en&ct=clnk&cd=1&gl=us

...still learning,
Royce

8:13 PM  
OpenID kingdomseeking said...

When Jesus accused his enemies of blaspheming the Holy Spirit, in the context they were attributing the good works of Jesus to the power of Satan. So if blapheming the Holy Spirit is attributing good works done in the name of Jesus to the power of Satan, then the closest example I have ever witnessed of such blasphemy what a preacher who stood in the pulpit and attributed all of the charitable hospility of the church across the street to the work of the Devil. What was real interesting was to hear half of the congregation erupt with an 'Amen!'

Grace and peace,

Rex

10:32 AM  
Blogger Royce Ogle said...

kingdomseeking,

That would have been my last visit to that church.

10:36 AM  
Blogger jeleasure said...

Preacher Man,
It looks as though you picked a hard topic for your readers.
I wanted to let you know that I posted an accedemic peice on my blog. I will probably do a new one tomorrow evening.
Jim

4:17 PM  
Blogger preacherman said...

Thanks Jim!

6:13 PM  
Blogger preacherman said...

I want to encourage everyone to check out Jims blog. Aka "Jeleasure"! Great stuff. It is extremely worth it.

Jared thank you so much for sharing this with us. It is incredible as welll. I pray God's richest blessing in your family and ministry. Always remember that no matter how hard ministry gets God is with us.

7:59 PM  
Blogger preacherman said...

Do we limit the power of the Holy Spirit? Would that be the same as blasphemy? Why do so many believer limit what the Holy Spirit? Are we afraid? Do we not know as much as much as we should about it? What would happen to the church if we used all the it could do in our life?

Discuss!

8:02 PM  
OpenID kingdomseeking said...

Royce,

I was serving as a p/t Associate Minister with this congregation but not for long because this was just the beginning of the problems.

-Rex

10:14 PM  
Blogger lorenzothellama said...

I think you well know when you have committed a sin. Also, different people have different idea of what sin is. To one person something is wrong that to someone else is just a bit of a joke. As Louis de Berniers said in his wonderful book 'Birds without Wings' "I feel a great wavering in my soul".

Thank you for visiting again. There are Christian churches in Japan. In fact our friend Yoshtsune is the vicar of a Congregational Church and we stayed at the Church when we visited Osaka.

Mostly though, it is Shinto or Bhuddhism. I have a great leaning towards Buddhism. I think their philosophy is amazing. Christ said many of the same things that Buddha said 500 years earlier.

I sort of combine my Buddhism idealism with my Catholic Christain faith and jog along quite happily. A great hero of mine is Anthony de Mello. He was an American, born in India. He was a Jesuit priest and combined the Eastern philosophies with his Jesuit beliefs. At one time I believe he was excommunicated by the Pope but was reinstated before he died.

His books are wonderful. They are gentle and witty and a joy to read. Maybe you could google him and find out a bit about his writing.

7:30 AM  
Blogger Kansas Bob said...

This is a good question Kinney:

"Why do so many believer limit what the Holy Spirit?"

I think that most of us have gotten used to living our "Christian" lives from our heads. I think that many do not understand that the Holy Spirit speaks to us from within and not from without. It is a matter of learning to discern His voice spoken to our inner most being (John 7:38) and not trying to discern His voice with our brains.

Of course to live this way would involve rejecting the worldly wisdom that our heads so often embrace and living from our innermost being.. not that I fully understand it :)

I think that it is an issue of spiritual maturity. Sadly many seem to judge based on carnal/fleshly fruit (like the Pharisees did) discounting the work of the Holy Spirit as evidenced by His fruit (Galatians 5:22).

Long answer to a simple question.. I'd be interested in your thoughts on it Kinney.. maybe you could share them in another post?

10:41 AM  
Blogger preacherman said...

Kansas BOb,
Thank you so much for sharing your thoughts on this topic. I totally agree. My prayer is that more and more believers will listen to the HolY Spiirts. I agree that we us our intelllect instead of being lead by the spirit and using our heart to make a differernce in our lives. Thank you for making it so plain and clear. I hope you have a wonderful week.

11:48 AM  
Blogger lorenzothellama said...

Kansas Bob: If you had been brought up a Catholic I don't think there would be any problem with the Holy Spirit. So much of what we learn and accept as children carries on through our adult life.

1:19 PM  
Blogger Kansas Bob said...

I was raised Episcopal Lorenzo.. but I don't get what you are say.. perhaps you can explain?

1:50 PM  
OpenID westcoastwitness.com said...

Hey Royce - thanks for posting that Piper link.

-Wes

4:06 PM  
Blogger preacherman said...

Yes I really enjoyed the Piper link as well.

7:28 PM  
Blogger preacherman said...

Do people confuse not excepting Christ when they die as blasphemy? Is there a difference? What do you guys think? (yes I threw in my california lingo in that last question).

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