What Is The Blasphemy Against The Holy Spirit?
Blasphemy against the Holy Spirit has always puzzled many Bible students ( Matthew 12:24-32; Mark 3:22-30; Luke 11:17-23). What exactly is this sin? The word "blasphemy" is actually a Greek word that was brought into the English language (called "transliteration"). A translation or definition of this word is "to speak reproachfully, rail at, revile" (Thayer, p. 102). Simply put, blasphemy means to slander or put down someone. Therefore, in regards to the question, blaspheming the Holy Spirit has to do with speaking reproachfully against the Holy Spirit.
Before we answer what blasphemy of the Holy Spirit is, let us determine what it is not. Some assume that the sin under question is adultery or murder. However, adultery and murder are listed in the scriptures as sins that can be forgiven or pardoned (pardonable sins; notice Mark 3:29, "he who blasphemes against the Holy Spirit never has forgiveness", describing this sins as "unpardonable"). Although there are many people who sadly will enter hell because they choose not to repent (Acts 8:22; and be baptized if not a Christian, Acts 2:38) and get out of their adulterous marriages and receive true pardon, there are a few who will genuinely repent and receive pardon from their adultery, thus being forgiven by the blood of Jesus (Matthew 19:9; 2 Thessalonians 1:7-9; Revelation 21:8). There were people though who were pardoned because they came out of the sin of adultery; so adultery cannot be the unpardonable sin (1 Corinthians 6:9-11). The same can be said of murder (Consider Saul of Tarsus, Acts 7:57-60; 22:16).
Also, the blasphemy against the Holy Spirit is not the continual rejection of the gospel. Saul of Tarsus was no doubt a man who continually rejected the gospel, but then he finally rendered obedience to it and was therefore saved from his sins (Acts 7:57-58; 1 Timothy 1:12-16; Acts 22:16).
Let us consider three points concerning the blasphemy of the Holy Spirit" First, once committed it cannot be forgiven (the unpardonable sin). Second, it is a sin that one c an commit and still live (the Pharisees were admonished that they would not have forgiveness in the Mosaic or Christian dispensation). Third, blasphemy is a verbal act, not just a hardened heart.
Now let us examine the context to determine what blasphemy of the Holy Spirit is (Matthew 12:24-32; Mark 3:22-30; Luke 11:17-23). Jesus had cast out a demon and many believed He was the true Messiah over the spiritual world. The Pharisees , however, were dishonest and devised an alternative explanation by insisting that the source of Jesus' miraculous power was Satan (Beelzebub). Jesus, the master logician, gives four great arguments as to why His power could not have originated from Satan. First, Satan would be destroying his own kingdom (Matthew 12:25,26; Mark 3:23-26; Luke 11:17-18). Why would Satan fight against his own? Second, Jesus was showing how dishonest and unreasonable the Pharisees were because the Pharisees would have to admit that their own sons would have to be casting out demons by the power of Satan as well (Matthew 12:27-28; Luke 11:19,20). Jesus was not actually claiming that their sons were casting out demons, but trying to get the Pharisees to see the sound argument. Third, Jesus had to cast out demons in order to upset the house of Satan (Matthew 12:28-29; Luke 11:21-23). Jesus was ushering in the kingdom of God and wanted to show the power of God's reign over the powers of darkness. Fourth, Jesus states that a tree is known by its fruit (Matthew 12:33-37). Jesus is stating that demons are wicked and He had come to stop their wickedness by casting them out. Therefore, Jesus is a good tree because He bears good fruit. Satan's tree is evil and bears evil fruit. People would be able to recognize whether Jesus is a good tree or an evil tree because of the fruit He produce d.
Mark 3:30 gives us the answer to what the blasphemy against the Holy Spirit is. The Pharisees had attributed miracles, which was irrefutable evidence of Jesus' divine power, by speaking reproachfully against the Holy Spirit claiming that Jesus' power, which was derived from the Holy Spirit, actually came from Satan. That is indeed blasphemous! Can the blasphemy against the Holy Spirit be committed today? No. Why? Because miracles have ceased (1 Corinthians 13:8-10). No honest person today can claim they have seen miracles, making it impossible for them to slander the Holy Spirit by calling Him Beelzebub/Satan as He works miracles through Jesus or anyone else.
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