I’ve been reading a lot of Jesus’ story. The four gospels, not in any order really. Each day I just pick a story and read the few chapters around it so understand its context. I’ve gone through quite a few studies of the specific gospels so I’m usually pretty quick at placing this small section with the bigger picture. But I was reading in Matthew 12 today and something just clicked.
Blasphemy. What is that? The unforgivable sin? Isn’t God big enough to forgive them all? Does God really have an exception?
I’ve tried over the years to understand and grasp that concept. It bothered me because God is all-powerful and just that word should cover something as little as a word “against the Holy Spirit,” right?
To understand this misconception, we must first grasp the context . . .
This happened right after Jesus drove Beelzebub out of the nameless man. And the Pharisees did not like it. They began to claim that Jesus was driving out the demon by the power of Satan! It was absurd! Jesus recants, calmly and with genius as always. (Although this one is more like a duh.) And He says, “Every kingdom divided against itself will be ruined . . . if Satan drives out Satan, he is divided against himself.” Idiots. I can’t help but picture the scene, and I bet it happened this way a lot. That the Pharisees, being the “brood of vipers” that they were, attempted being quiet and nonchalant about their accusations, when Jesus’ reply seemed to be shouted for all to hear, quickly and effectively grinding their arguments into the ground. He was exposing them. Jesus healed the blind and opened the eyes of the oppressed.
Anyways. Summary, the Pharisees accuse Jesus of driving out demons by the power of His absolute opposite and what does Jesus begin to teach on in the very next paragraph? Blasphemy.
The people were so legalized and worried over the rules, no wonder they would want to attack the Holy Spirit. Having God inside of them was unheard of, but for a few chosen prophets of the past. The Holy Spirit is freedom and is inside each and every one of us. It directs our paths and shows us God’s will. Since the time of the judges, it had been the Levite priests’ job to interpret God’s will for the people. The Pharisees must have been terrified that Jesus would make their high positions and seats of honor obsolete. And what better way to protect their behinds than to attack the very soul of Jesus? His Spirit. His “wellspring of life.”
To understand and comprehend the concept Jesus was painting for them and then to reject the offer of grace and humility from God Himself, is unforgivable. Because, bluntly, God can’t forgive a person that doesn’t want forgiveness, or worse, is so blinded by their self proclaimed righteousness they don’t think they need it.
And that’s why Jesus came to earth. He came to purify us from our sins so that we could be deemed worthy to have His Spirit inside of us.
The Holy Spirit is as vital to life as Jesus is. The Holy Spirit is God in us.