Friday, January 18th, 2013
The Question Of Salvation (Part 7)
Therefore I say to you, every sin and blasphemy will be forgiven men, but the blasphemy against the Spirit will not be forgiven men. Anyone who speaks a word against the Son of Man, it will be forgiven him; but whoever speaks against the Holy Spirit, it will not be forgiven him, either in this age or in the age to come.
Matthew 12:31-32 (NKJV)
Assuredly, I say to you, all sins will be forgiven the sons of men, and whatever blasphemies they may utter; but he who blasphemes against the Holy Spirit never has forgiveness, but is subject to eternal condemnation--because they said, 'He has an unclean spirit.'
Mark 3:28-30 (NKJV)
Who wants to ponder eternal damnation? Most people, including some Christians, consider the idea too drastic and surely not true. But Jesus says it is. Heaven is real. So is hell. Therefore, salvation is His theme song. It's sung by Him and every disciple in the Playbook of the New Testament.
So, let's listen closely to the King of Rock and Roll. If we tune in, He will rock our world, break down our misconceptions, and roll away the stones to bring us light.
Today's Scriptures are debated among Bible scholars. Exactly what did Jesus mean? If we've cursed God in times of great stress, are we doomed? Surely not, because He says He forgives a word against Him. He knows, 'No man can tame the tongue. It is an unruly evil, full of deadly poison' (James 3:8).*
Many theologians believe the unforgivable blasphemy is a believer's choice to turn from God to habitual sin. That's possible, but I believe it's more about the distinction between God and His gift of the Holy Spirit. Disregarding or disobeying God grieves His Spirit within us (see Ephesians 4:25-32).
But publicly denouncing the Holy Spirit of God is unforgivable. This was the sin of the Pharisees who said Jesus' power to perform miracles came from Satan. Actors, models and talent for Christ: take note. This danger ties closely to God's total ban on occult involvement--including the occult movement in media... no matter how 'cool' it seems to be.
Because these devious darlings advertise a different king and work from a different spirit... misleading millions. Don't join them.
Consider this explanation of the unforgivable blasphemy:
'For it is impossible for those who were once enlightened, and have tasted the heavenly gift, and have become partakers of the Holy Spirit, and have tasted the good Word of God and the powers of the age to come, if they fall away, to renew them again to repentance, since they crucify again for themselves the Son of God, and put Him to an open shame' (Hebrews 6:4-6).
This warning is written for believers.
To Be Continued...
*Although no man can tame his own tongue, God can. If any of you are tempted toward rash words like I am, pray to God: 'Set a guard over my mouth, Lord; keep watch over the door of my lips' (Psalm 141:3). His Word and Spirit will perfect us. It may take time and diligent prayer, but He will transform us not only to look like Jesus--but to speak like Him, too.
P.S. To read the other devotions in this series, please see the The Question of Salvation series.