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ANSWER:   That’s a question than continues to come up.  Let’s look at one of the portions of scripture that speaks of the unpardonable sin.  Matthew 12:22-32 says, “Then was brought unto him one possessed with a devil, blind, and dumb: and he healed him, insomuch that the blind and dumb both spake and saw. And all the people were amazed, and said, Is not this the son of David? But when the Pharisees heard it, they said, This fellow doth not cast out devils, but by Beelzebub the prince of the devils.  And Jesus knew their thoughts, and said unto them, Every kingdom divided against itself is brought to desolation; and every city or house divided against itself shall not stand: And if Satan cast out Satan, he is divided against himself; how shall then his kingdom stand? And if I by Beelzebub cast out devils, by whom do your children cast them out? therefore they shall be your judges. But if I cast out devils by the Spirit of God, then the kingdom of God is come unto you. Or else how can one enter into a strong man’s house, and spoil his goods, except he first bind the strong man? and then he will spoil his house. He that is not with me is against me; and he that gathereth not with me scattereth abroad. Wherefore I say unto you, All manner of sin and blasphemy shall be forgiven unto men: but the blasphemy against the Holy Ghost shall not be forgiven unto men. And whosoever speaketh a word against the Son of man, it shall be forgiven him: but whosoever speaketh against the Holy Ghost, it shall not be forgiven him, neither in this world, neither in the world to come.”

On this occasion, the Lord Jesus healed a man that was demon possessed.  The people must have been familiar with the words of Isaiah 35:5 in reference to the coming Messiah which said, “Then the eyes of the blind shall be opened, and the ears of the deaf shall be unstopped.”  Many people were amazed and wondered aloud if Jesus was the son of David, or the promised Messiah.  The Pharisees, however, rejected this thought and declared that Jesus cast out the demon by the power of Beelzebub, which was another name for Satan.  These people attributed the work of the Holy Spirit to Satan, and the Lord gave this dire warning, “All manner of sin and blasphemy shall be forgiven unto men: but the blasphemy against the Holy Ghost shall not be forgiven unto men.”  To blaspheme means to vilify, or speak evil of.  Ephesians 4:31 says, “Let all bitterness, and wrath, and anger, and clamour, and evil speaking, be put away from you, with all malice.”  The Greek word for blaspheme is translated ‘evil speaking’ in this verse.  So, we’re told that blaspheme against men can be forgiven; even blaspheme against the Son of man, who is the Lord Jesus, can be forgiven.  But blaspheme against the Holy Ghost will not be forgiven.

How are we to understand this?  First of all, the words of the Pharisees here are not just an ignorant denial and opposition to the power of God.  No, these men were witness to a great and marvelous miracle that only God Himself could perform.  In the very face of this great witness of the power of God, they attributed this work to Satan.  The Lord works through the Holy Ghost, so by blaspheming the Holy Ghost, they were vilifying the very power of God.  In the presence of Christ, they claimed that he operated under the power of Satan.

Let’s look closely at Matthew 12:32, “And whosoever speaketh a word against the Son of man, it shall be forgiven him: but whosoever speaketh against the Holy Ghost, it shall not be forgiven him, neither in this world, neither in the world to come.”  The word ‘world’ here is more properly translated ‘age’.  It is not speaking of the existing earth, sun, moon, and stars, but rather it is speaking of two distinct ages, or time periods.  It is speaking of that present age, and a future age.  Christ was in the world.  His work was attributed to the power of Satan.  In this present age, Christ is not physically in the world.  However, He will once again be in this world when He returns at the end of the tribulation period to set up Him Millennial kingdom.  This is the age that is referred to in Matthew 12:32.  In the Millennial kingdom when Christ is physically present and someone accuses Him of operating under the power of Satan, that sin will not be forgiven.

I want to make it clear that if you are afraid that you have committed the unpardonable sin, you have not.  Let’s look at the Apostle Paul’s words in 1 Timothy 1:12-13, “And I thank Christ Jesus our Lord, who hath enabled me, for that he counted me faithful, putting me into the ministry; Who was before a blasphemer, and a persecutor, and injurious: but I obtained mercy, because I did it ignorantly in unbelief.”  Paul admits to being a blasphemer, but acknowledges that he found mercy.  He did not accuse the Lord Jesus to His face of being led by Satan.  It was while he was in unbelief and ignorant of the truth of whom the Lord Jesus was that he blasphemed.

You can be forgiven.  You can be saved, no matter what you have done.  The Lord Jesus said in John 6:37, “…him that cometh to me I will in no wise cast out.”  If you come to the Lord Jesus by faith, believing in Him as your Lord and savior, He will not reject you, no matter what you’ve done.  (70.2)