What Does it Mean to Blaspheme the Holy Spirit?

In my experience, a lot of believers misunderstand what blaspheming the Holy Spirit means, and unfortunately, they erroneously try to tell others what they think the Bible teaches on the subject.  Like anything else, we want to embrace the truth!  So, here we go!

Once a man was overheard saying, “This Holy Spirit stuff (he was specifically speaking about tongues in the corporate worship services) is a bunch of nonsense.”  Did he blaspheme the Holy Spirit?  Probably not, but I’m sure he grieved the Holy Spirit.  That man needed an encounter with the Holy Spirit!  Many years ago I sat in a Sunday School class where the teacher told us that speaking in tongues was of the devil.  Was he blaspheming?  It was probably not his intention to blaspheme.  He only taught what his denomination believed, and perhaps God will not hold this to his charge.  I’m not the judge!

I often remind believers that they may or may not agree with certain teachings about the Holy Spirit, and they may not feel comfortable in churches that we identify as “Spirit-filled,” but they should be careful about what they say.  I tell them, “Never attack another Christ-honoring church, just because they don’t believe certain doctrinal truths you might hold dear.”

So, what constitutes blasphemy against the Holy Spirit?  Let’s allow the Scriptures to speak for themselves. Jesus warned the religious leaders of His day in Matthew 12:31-32: “Wherefore, I say unto you, all manner of sin and blasphemy shall be forgiven unto men: but the blasphemy against the Holy Spirit shall not be forgiven unto men.  And whoever speaks a word against the Son of Man, it shall be forgiven him: but whoever speaks against the Holy Spirit, it shall not be forgiven him, neither in this world, neither in the world to come.”

I’m not going to attempt to wax theologically eloquent on this point.  Allow me to simplify it for you.  Blasphemy against the Holy Spirit is rejecting the Holy Spirit’s convicting power – because one can be saved only as the Holy Spirit draws him. To refuse to repent or to acknowledge one’s sin is to refuse God’s forgiveness.  In short, blasphemy against the Holy Spirit is rejecting Jesus Christ!

Sometimes believers worry that they have accidentally committed this unforgivable sin. But only those who have turned their backs on God and rejected all faith have any need to worry.  Anyone who continually rejects the prompting of the Holy Spirit removes himself from the only source that can lead him to repentance and restoration to God.

If you’re afraid you have blasphemed the Holy Spirit, you’re probably on good ground.  Had you truly rejected Him, you would not care.  Your conscience would be seared!

Jesus makes an interesting statement, “…neither in this world, neither in the world to come” (v. 32).  To what is He referring?  Those who blaspheme the Spirit can’t be saved in this life, and as a result, will suffer eternal separation from God because of their choice.  In the final analysis, who goes to hell?  Anyone who rejects Jesus Christ!

Some have wrongly taught that using God’s Name in vain or using God and Jesus as curse words constitutes blasphemy   Of course, such talk is dreadful to hear, but Jesus makes it clear that blasphemy relates only to the Spirit’s work. I hate it when people use God’s Name or Jesus’ precious Name as curse words.  They curse the only One Who can save them!  But the Scriptures make it clear that the Spirit draws–He convicts of sin–Jesus forgives and then presents us to the Father because of His shed blood!

Why not welcome the Spirit’s work in your life today?  The Holy Spirit is so wonderful.  He always glorifies Jesus Christ.  And He wants to draw you to the Master today.  If you’ve already saved, ask the Holy Spirit to touch you more deeply.  He desires greater intimacy with you!

Kathryn Kuhlman was a nationally acclaimed healing evangelist from yesteryear, who taught me as a young believer to respect the Holy Spirit.  She never wanted to do or allow anything in her services that grieved Him.  While her mannerisms may have been somewhat peculiar, I loved to listen to her, for she loved and honored the Holy Spirit.  And God showed up in her meetings!

Let’s bid Him welcome today and always!


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