Summary: Parts of this message was adapted from a sermon by Pastor Jerry Shirley. Today I want to focus on the idea of “Have I crossed the line?” Have I committed the unforgivable sin? People often ask what is the “Unpardonable or the unforgivable sin”?
A pastor asked his congregation this question. “Is there anyone here who has never sinned? If there is, please stand up.” Well In the back of the room John stood up. The pastor said “John, are you telling me that you have never sinned?” “No” said John, “I’m standing on behalf of my wife’s first husband, who died. According to her, he never did anything wrong and I’ve had to live with that.”
The Bible teaches that there are a number of sins we can commit against the Holy Spirit and one of them is what we will look at today… “The Unpardonable Sin” and Jesus says that for this sin there is no forgiveness.
Today I want to focus on the idea of “Have I crossed the line?” Have I committed the unforgivable sin?
People often ask what the “Unpardonable or the unforgivable sin” is and there are many strange interpretations of what it is.
Listen to me…this is an extremely serious and desperately dangerous situation BUT it is one that is easy to avoid!
Today, if you look around you’ll find groups who worship God the Father only, not believing that Jesus is God. Some groups focus on Jesus only.
This may be the most ridiculous thing you’ve ever heard. You can’t worship the Father and not the Son and You would be right.
But you see, we can be critical of such groups but if we are not careful we end up, in the same boat.
All too often, we put little value upon the Holy Spirit who is one of God’s 3 equal persons.
Charles Spurgeon wrote: "Common, too common, is the sin of forgetting the Holy Spirit…the Church will never prosper until more reverently it believes in the Holy Ghost."
SO…What is the unpardonable sin?
Well first let’s look at what was happening.
Christ was performing miracle after miracle, healing physical disease as well as the demon possessed.
People were amazed at His teaching and the works He performed and His popularity was growing, at an alarming rate. This troubled the religious leaders, who also witnessed what Jesus was doing.
Those who witnessed these awesome events responded in one of two ways:
a. Some were amazed and saw it as proof that Christ was the promised Messiah. Matthew’s account tells us, in: Matthew 12: 23 “And all the people were amazed, and said, Is not this the son of David?”
b. Others accused Jesus of casting out demons by the power of "Beelzebub," V. 22
This is the name of an ancient Philistine idol, meaning “the god of flies” but the Jews called it the “god of dung” The name was eventually given to Satan as the “prince of unclean spirits.”
They insisted that Christ was nothing more than a demon possessed man., 30
Christ warned them not to speak against the Holy Spirit in Verse, 29
But He first gave the assurance that ALL sin can and WILL be forgiven by God, in verse 28.
• Sometimes people identify certain sins as the "unpardonable sin," Things like suicide…[Rom 8] or
Murder [Moses was a murderer…Paul was an accessory to Stephens murder], or adultery [King David].
These 3 men are men that we often say that we would love to be like.
Each committed terrible sin but found forgiveness. Because Jesus clearly states that ALL sin is forgivable. **No matter what you or I think…about that person who we feel is deserving of hell. It’s not your decision.
• Jesus also deliberately said in, Matthew 12 that a person could speak a word against Him and still be forgiven. I would add…IF that person repents and seeks forgiveness.
I want you to understand something here.
Jesus didn’t say that the Scribes had committed the unforgivable sin.
What He was saying was “Be careful because you are about to cross the line.”
This was not about what they had done, but what they were in danger of doing. So far we see that:
a. They had rejected the witness of Jesus’ words.
b. They had rejected the witness of Jesus’ works.
c. But they had NOT rejected God’s final witness, the Holy Spirit, NOT YET.
The Holy Spirit had not yet come.
The only unforgivable sin is to reject the witness of the Holy Spirit and accepting Christ.
The Holy Spirit comes to convict us of our sin and convince us that we need salvation.
Jesus is saying to these men, “If you treat the Holy Spirit like you do Me. If you reject Him like you do Me, you will never be forgiven”
The reality is that if you treat the nudging of the Spirit with a closed mind and closed heart, you will never receive forgiveness…even though it is offered to you…
Here’s what Jesus was saying.