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The Blasphemy of the Holy Spirit (Part 2)



Last week we began our discussion on the the blasphemy of the Holy Spirit. We focused our thoughts on Matthew 12:22-37. The parallel account in Mark 3:23-27 reveals a similar situation. The scribes, who were also religious leaders, accused Jesus of casting out demons by the power of Beelzebub. Jesus, once again, responds by illustrating the absurdity of Satan working against himself. He explains that no one can enter a strong man's house and plunder his goods unless he first binds the strong man. By this, Jesus implies that He is the strong man who has power over Satan. He came into this world to free people from Satan's influence through the work of the Holy Spirit.


The account found in Luke 11:17-22 echoes similar points to the story. Jesus addresses the accusation of casting out demons by Beelzebub, repeating the argument that a house divided against itself cannot stand. He then emphasizes the power of the Holy Spirit by comparing it to a stronger man who overcomes and defeats the strong man, referring to Himself overcoming the power of Satan by the Holy Spirit's work.

The blasphemy of the Holy Spirit seems to refer to a deliberate and persistent rejection of the work of the Holy Spirit and attributing it to Satan. It is essentially a willful and defiant opposition to God's Spirit, refusing to recognize His power and truth. This sin is considered particularly grave because it reflects a hardened heart that resists the very source of forgiveness and reconciliation with God.


Maybe at the beginning of this study I should have emphasized how essential it is to interpret these passages with caution and sensitivity. There is no question that they deal with complex theological concepts. The exact nature and implications of the blasphemy of the Holy Spirit have been subjects of various interpretations and debates throughout Christian history. Most denominations and theologians hold differing views on this matter. So how can we know the truth?


Elvis Denney asked me two specific questions… 1) What did Jesus say? 2) Was it something they said? Great questions. First, what was Jesus actually talking about? Pay particular attention to the illustrations he used after referencing the sin against the Spirit: trees, vipers, treasure chests (Matthew 12:33-35, Luke 11:17). Second, what did Jesus actually say about what the did? Was it something they said or what they did? Pay particular attention to the words he used just before referencing the sin against the Spirit “…is not… is…gathers not… scatter…” Notice the verbs and participles, and that it is the present tense (Matthew 12:30). It wasn’t what they did but what they thought in their heart that condemned them.


The real issue is that the sin is a mindset, a impenitent heart (Jeremiah 6:16-17, 7:16, Romans 1:24-28, 1 John 5:16). There are many things to consider about the way we treat the Holy Spirit. What we do can impact the feelings of God. Consider, for example, the Holy Spirit can be resisted (Acts 7:51), despised (Hebrews 10:29), grieved (Ephesians 4:30), quenched (1 Thessalonians 5:19), blasphemed (Matthew 12:22-37). I believe this is a sin of progression, but it begins with resisting God. He is listening to our words and they can impact our destiny (Matthew 12:36-37). We need to give attention to our hearts if we want everything else to be right with God (Proverbs 4:23, 23:7, Matthew 11:29-30).

Be cautious of doing anything that could hinder your walk with God. Be filled with the Holy Spirit. Do not reject Him. Have a great week!


You are loved.

Dr. Ray Reynolds



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