Quote for that Day

Reading: Mark 3:21-30 Inexcusable Iniquity
Saturday, Mar 19, 2016

"How much worse punishment, do you suppose, will he be thought worthy who has insulted the Spirit of Grace?" (Heb 10:29)

"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" (Mk 3:2829; Mt 12:31,32; Lk 12:10). Pentecostals use these words of Jesus against non-pentecostals when the latter question the genuineness of certain pentecostal manifestations. But what did Jesus actually mean by such strong words?

Blasphemy against God was punishable by death. It could not be atoned for under the Old Testament law (Lev 24:10-16). But what about the provision under the New Covenant that the blood of Jesus Christ cleanses us from "all" sin? Why did Jesus say that blasphemy against the Holy Spirit was more serious than that against Himself?

The Holy Spirit is the only force that can convict us of our sin and lead us to repentance (Jn 16:7-11). Without His help, no one will be able to call Christ as Lord (1 Cor 12:3). If anyone blasphemes against the Spirit, there will be no one left to cause him to repent. It was when the people and certain religionists judged Jesus as mad and demon-possessed, He spoke about blasphemy against the Holy Spirit. Blasphemy means denouncing with abusive and malignant language. Putting the Son of God to an open shame is "insulting the Spirit of Grace." Immediately after warning against blaspheming against the Spirit, Jesus served several analogies like "bad tree" and "brood of vipers" (Mt 12:33-35,39). So it is clear that their blasphemy was not merely an utterance of the lips, but an expression of character.

Stanley Horton (1916- ), an outstanding Pentecostal leader, has warned, "Only God knows whether in any particular case a person's denial of the work of the Spirit comes from wilfulness or from ignorance." There are thousands who attributed the Pentecostal experience to the devil, but who later repented or had their eyes opened and were even baptised with the Spirit.

There are many strange phenomena these days which are claimed to be of the Spirit. No one is under obligation to accept them so, when they lack clear Scriptural evidence. We must stay cautious but judge nothing before the time.