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Blasphemy Against the Holy Spirit & Sinful Remarriages
1. Blasphemy against the Holy Spirit has generated much discussion.
2. Some have misunderstood this sin. And now, they are using their mistaken notion to support their false conclusions about sin, repentance & salvation as it relates to unlawful remarriages.
3. It is practical & pertinent that we understand this subject within the context of inspired scripture & not the wisdom & will of man (2 Tim. 2:15; 1 Cor. 2:1-5; Col. 2:3-4).
I. THE HOLY SPIRIT UPON JESUS: A MARK OF MESSIAHSHIP – Isa. 42:1-4 (Matt. 12:15-21).
A. “Could This Be The Son of David”?
1. Miracles of Jesus proof He is the Son of God – Jno. 20:30-31.
2. People were getting the point! – Matt. 12:22-23 (Isa. 61:1-2 → Lk. 4:18)
B. The Pharisees Rejected This Evidence, & Their Rejection Blasphemed the Holy Spirit – Matt. 12:24; Mk. 3:22.
C. Jesus Demolished Their False Charge – Matt. 12:25-30.
1. Chaos principle (12:25): A divided house (kingdom) cannot stand.
2. Principle applied (12:26): If Jesus was acting by the power of Satan, Satan was defeating himself!
3. Hypocrisy exposed (12:27): Their alleged exorcisms judged them as hypocritical and evil. (cf. Acts 19:13-16)
4. True conclusion (12:28): By divine power (Spirit of God), then the kingdom has come upon you (Messiah, as prophesied, was w/ them).
5. Plunder principle (12:29): Jesus’ battle with Satan (1 Jno. 3:8).
6. No neutrality (12:30): Time for a moral decision!
D. The Depth of Their Problem: Blasphemy Against the Holy Spirit.
1. Blasphemy against the Holy Spirit (Matt. 12:31; Mk. 3:29): Attribute to the devil the Holy Spirit’s work.
2. Will not be forgiven (subject to eternal condemnation) (Matt. 12:32; Mk. 3:29-30): Continued rejection – No forgiveness.
3. Sequential argument (12:31-32):
a. Blaspheme Christ: May yet be persuaded by gospel (Acts 2:36-37).
b. Blaspheme Holy Spirit: Reject the power & evidence which forms the basis for faith & forgiveness! – cf. Heb. 2:3-4; Mk. 16:17-20, 16
E. Putting Oneself into a State of Continual Sin & Perpetual Rejection of the Power of God Produces “Eternal Condemnation” (no forgiveness!).
1. As long as a person continues to oppose, reject and blasphemy the Spirit-given evidence that Jesus is the Christ, he will not be forgiven.
2. J. W. McGarvey correctly observed:
“But blasphemy against the Holy Spirit is in its nature an eternal sin, for if one rejects the evidence given by the Holy Spirit and ascribes it to Satan, he rejects the only evidence upon which faith can be based; and without faith there is no forgiveness. The difference in the two sins is therefore in no way due to any difference in the Son and Spirit as to their degrees of sanctity or holiness. The punishment is naturally eternal because the sin is perpetual.” (The Fourfold Gospel, p. 303)
II. FORGIVENESS NEVER AVAILABLE? -No-
A. Some Brethren Teach Forgiveness is Never Possible Once Blasphemy Against the HS is Committed.
1. Extrapolating, they then say sinful remarriages must necessarily be “forgiven” – And tell people to stay in the sinful remarriages! (Matt. 19:9; 1 Cor. 7:10-11)
a. Unlawful remarriages can be forgiven when sinner ceases his practice of sin! (Rev. 9:20-21) So can blasphemy!!
b. God’s power to save is never diminished nor His mercy abated by any sin of man (Isa. 59:1-2; cf. Lk. 15:24).
c. When adulterer will cease adultery he will be forgiven in his repentance! – cf. Acts 19:18-20
2. If there is one sin which will never be forgiven, no matter if the sinner repents, then…
a. Gospel not powerful to save all believers – Rom. 1:16.
b. Some cannot call on the Lord’s name & be saved – Rom. 10:11-13.
c. Jesus is neither the Savior of all men, nor of all who believe! – 1 Tim. 4:10
3. It is a strange and perverted exegesis of scripture which concludes there is one sin God will never forgive (blasphemy against the Holy Spirit) - even when the sinner repents and obeys the gospel - yet there is another sin God will allow the sinner to continue practicing even though he has not repented of it! – cf. Ezek. 18:4, 23, 32
B. A Blasphemer Against The Holy Spirit Who Was Forgiven: Saul of Tarsus – 1 Tim. 1:13.
1. Paul indeed blasphemed against the Holy Spirit by resisting the Spirit-provided evidence that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God – cf. Acts 26:9; 7:58, 51; 8:1.
2. But, he was forgiven when he believed the gospel, repented of his sins & obeyed the gospel! – Acts 22:16
3. Therefore, the premise brethren are using about this sin is false, & their application is equally false!
C. Practicing Sin – Rom. 6:1-2. (Any sinner who does not repent of his sin “will not be forgiven” – 1 Jno. 5:16-17)
1. The blasphemer who persists in (will not repent of but continues to practice) his blasphemy will not be forgiven of his blasphemy (“it will not be forgiven him”, Matt. 12:32). [But, remember Saul was forgiveness when he repented of his blasphemy!]
2. The drunkard who persists in (will not repent of but continues to practice) his drunkenness will not be forgiven of his drunkenness (“it will not be forgiven him”, Matt. 12:32) – Gal. 5:21.
3. The polygamist who persists in (will not repent of but continues to practice) his polygamy will not be forgiven of his polygamy (“it will not be forgiven him”, Matt. 12:32) – Rom. 7:2-3; Matt. 19:4-6.
4. The adulterer who persists in (will not repent of but continues to practice) his adultery will not be forgiven of his adultery (“it will not be forgiven him”, Matt. 12:32) – 1 Cor. 6:9-11; Heb. 13:4.
D. Repentance & the Nature of Sin.
1. Repentance does not change the nature of sin, it changes heart & life in respect to practicing the sin! (Lk. 3:8-14)
2. Forgiveness is only applied when the sinner ceases his sin – Rom. 6:1-4, 11-12.
1. God’s forgiveness of our sins is a wonderful, glorious thing! We lessen the value of forgiveness and fail to properly esteem God’s mercy whenever we redefine forgiveness to imply that one can continue in sin that grace may abound (Rom. 6:1)! To teach people they can remain in unlawful remarriages with God’s approval and forgiveness cheapens God’s forgiveness, nullifies the demands of repentance and deceptively says “peace, peace” when there is no peace.
2. God’s word never approves forgiveness in spite of one’s sin. The sin of blasphemy against the Holy Spirit cannot be used successfully to prop up the false teaching that sinful remarriages are “forgiven” after baptism in spite of its ongoing practice.
3. We urge brethren who teach otherwise to give up their false conclusion that adulterers can continue in their adultery when they become Christians “because God forgives their sin of adultery”.
4. God forgives every sinner when he repents of his sin and obeys the gospel, not before (Acts 17:30; 2:37-38).