The most fateful words ever spoken by Jesus had to do with the fearful possibility of committing the unpardonable sin. He said, “And so I tell you, every kind of sin and slander can be forgiven, but blasphemy against the Spirit will not be forgiven.” (Matthew 12:31)
No one can misconstrue the clear message of these verses. There is a sin unto death. A man or woman may pass over a point which separates God’s mercy and His wrath. These chilling words of our Lord stand in stark contrast to His usually benevolent utterances. For this reason, if for no other, they should be examined with great care.
What is this sin which heaven regards with such abhorrence? Why will God deal so severely with those who are guilty of this sin? To the human mind a great number of depraved and cruel acts might fall into such a category but which one of them would God count so heinous and horrible that it could never be forgiven? It is the blasphemy against the Holy Spirit.
The concept of “blasphemy against the Spirit” is also mentioned in Mark 3:22-30, where the teachers of the law who came down from Jerusalem were accusing Jesus to be possessed by Beelzebul and telling people that by the prince of demons He was driving out demons. They were basically saying that Jesus Christ, God incarnated had an impure spirit.
So we see that the term blasphemy may be generally defined as “defiant irreverence.” The term can be applied to such sins as cursing God or willfully degrading things relating to God. It is also attributing some evil to God, or denying Him the good that we should attribute to Him.
This case of blasphemy, however, is a specific one, called “the blasphemy against the Holy Spirit” which Jesus talks about in Matthew 12:31. As we continue reading in Matthew 12:32 Jesus says: “Anyone who speaks a word against the Son of Man will be forgiven, but anyone who speaks against the Holy Spirit will not be forgiven, either in this age or in the age to come.”
The Pharisees, having witnessed irrefutable proof that Jesus was working miracles in the power of the Holy Spirit, claimed instead that the Lord was possessed by the demon “Beelzebub” and they said, “It is only by Beelzebul, the prince of demons that this fellow drives out demons.” (Matthew 12:24) The blasphemy of the Spirit today, which is the same as the unpardonable sin, is the state of continued unbelief. There is no pardon for a person who dies in unbelief. Continual rejection of the Holy Spirit’s promptings to trust in Jesus Christ is the unpardonable blasphemy against Him. Remember what is stated in John 3:16: “For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish but have eternal life.” Further on in the same chapter is the verse that says: “Whoever believes in the Son has eternal life, but whoever rejects the Son will not see life, for God’s wrath remains on him.” (John 3:36)
The only condition wherein someone would have no forgiveness is if he hears the truth of the gospel and even so rejects the Son as Hebrews 10:26-29 states: “If we deliberately keep on sinning after we have received the knowledge of the truth, no sacrifice for sins is left, 27 but only a fearful expectation of judgment and of raging fire that will consume the enemies of God. 28 Anyone who rejected the law of Moses died without mercy on the testimony of two or three witnesses. 29 How much more severely do you think someone deserves to be punished who has trampled the Son of God underfoot, who has treated as an unholy thing the blood of the covenant that sanctified them, and who has insulted the Spirit of grace?”
Remember what Jesus said: “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me” (John 14:6); and not what many false religions and false teachers are teaching that there are many paths to salvation. Be careful and always seek the truth of God’s word in the Bible.