Summary: Is it possible to commit a sin that is unforgivable? If it is possible what exactly would that sin be?
The Unpardonable Sin
July 26, 2009
A. The passage before us today contains one of the most ominous warnings recorded in scripture.
B. Jesus’ ministry had grown to enormous proportions vs.20.
1. It was so large that his relatives came because they were concerned about Him.
a) They like many others thought He was a little too fanatic in His work vs.21.
b) It seems He didn’t even have the support of His own family.
2. Some other people also came to see and hear Him vs.22.
a) The Pharisees who had been dogging Him sent for reinforcements from Jerusalem.
b) Remember they are on a mission to destroy Him and are looking for any excuse to have Him stoned.
C. These men have no answers for the things that are taking place and the effect it is having on the people and it is driving them nuts.
1. His teaching was far superior to theirs.
2. They tried to accuse Him of breaking the Sabbath.
3. Now the people are beginning to ask if this might be the Messiah Matt.12:22-23.
4. In their frustration they resort to slander by accusing Him of being in cahoots with the Devil.
5. This act by the Pharisees brought about the solemn warning of the unpardonable sin.
D. As I was preparing this message I came across a web site which encourages people to blaspheme the Holy Spirit and thereby commit the unpardonable sin.
1. It purports to demonstrate that the concept of a righteous just God who will punish people for their sin is a myth created by man and those who sign on with them are asserting their agreement with it.
2. This just goes to show you that you can find just about anything on the internet but is also brings up some questions which our passage today addresses.
a) Is it possible to commit a sin that is unforgivable?
b) If it is possible what exactly would that sin be?
c) Is it possible for us to commit that sin today or was it something that could only happen during Jesus’ earthly ministry?
3. The answers to those questions are best understood by examining them in the context of today’s passage.
4. I want to look at 3 aspects of this passage.
a) The accusation
b) The answer
c) The admonition
II. The unpardonable sin.
A. The accusation vs.22.
1. Lacking any other explanation for the things that Jesus is doing and not wanting to admit that He is who He says He is these men resort to an accusation they hope will incite the people.
a) One of the prominent aspects of the Lord’s ministry was casting out demons.
b) It was not something hidden it was obvious that amazing things were happening.
c) One commentator put it this way; “Observe the contrast between the thoughts of the multitude and of those who professed to be their teachers, the scribes and Pharisees. The multitude, free from prejudice, and using only their natural light of reason, candidly owned the greatness of Christ’s miracles as wrought by a Divine power; whereas the Pharisees, filled with envy and malice, attributed these mighty works which he wrought by the finger of God, to the direct agency of Satan.”
d) They could not deny that those things were happening – that would have caused them to lose credibility with the people.
e) So they said “well yes he does these things but not by God He does it by Satan’s power.”
a) Lord of the flies, Lord of the dwelling place.
b) One of the many titles ascribed to Satan.
c) They are accusing Him of working in cooperation with Satan.
B. The answer:
1. Up to this point Jesus has pretty much stayed quite about their accusations but now He speaks out vs.23.
a) He speaks to them in parables.
b) This is the primary form of teaching used by Jesus.
c) The Lord uses 4 arguments to refute the accusations of the Pharisees.
2. Common sense vs.23-25.
a) The stability of a kingdom or a family is dependent upon unity.
b) Once a kingdom or a home is divided it is easy to defeat them.
3. Argument from absurdity.
a) Vs.26 demonstrated the logical conclusion when a kingdom is divided.
b) It is absurd to think that Satan would oppose himself. He would in essence neutralize himself.
c) Satan isn’t against Satan he is against God.
4. The argument from their own practice Matt.12:27-28.
a) They would never say that their own sons were under the power of Satan.
b) Their own practices proved them to be wrong.
5. The argument from experience vs.27.
a) Jesus is testifying of His own power over Satan.