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What Is Blasphemy and Is This the Unforgivable Sin?


The Crime of Blasphemy

2011© Roy Blizzard III

Blasphemy is the Speaking evil towards GOD. In its essence, it is a crime that consists of an impious PURPOSE in the usage of the words. It doesn’t necessarily include any action done, but may. This thought is based on Leviticus 24:10-23, where a man blasphemed the name of God and cursed Him and in turn was judged. The man cursed, reviled, hated or despised the name and/or person of God and held God in light regard and this was the reason for him being judged. By cursing, the person was declaring the cursed one (God) to be evil or utterly detestable.

Jesus and Blasphemy

Much later in 1st century CE times, this was taken to mean the mere mentioning of God’s name would subject a man to the curse. Yeshua (Jesus) however takes the earlier pre-Talmudic view based upon the purpose behind the words. Beyond this reference in Lev. nothing in the Bible indicates what constitutes Blasphemy other than the words of Yeshua about Blasphemy of the Holy Spirit in Matthew 12:31-32 in which people attributed works of God to HaSatan. This was the impious purpose in their blaming, in other words there was an ulterior motive.

We do have one early pre-Levitical example where in Job 2:9 Job’s wife tells Job to “curse God and die.” But how does one do this? It is tied to this same concept of Blasphemy. One can’t actually place a “curse” on God, but one can curse God by denying His power and purposes and acting out or stating hateful things about God and this enacts judgment of oneself by claiming Godship over their own life. By cursing God, Job’s purpose, had he done so, would be that God would quickly enact judgment and end his miserable life.

The Mishna lays stress on the term nokeb from קבב (to utter a curse against) and says that only if a person utters the name of God (Sanhedrin 7:5) is he guilty, but the Gemara goes further and makes it a criminal offence even to improperly use the sacred attributes of God such as the holy one or the merciful one. The Jewish courts only imposed the death penalty on the person who spoke the name of God, but did inflict corporal punishment upon those who uttered even God’s attributes (Sanhedrin 56a).

Later on after the fall of the Temple and with the rise of “Christianity” excommunication became an important tool in the controlling of the Jewish community due to the proclivity of the Believers to use what the Jews had lately declared blasphemy. They didn’t have to render a physical “death” penalty, they could just kill the relationships and thusly enact a “death” penalty of sorts.

A common ritual in the Middle East circa 1800 BCE was the practice of cursing, or denouncing someone’s enemies. They believed they could achieve this by writing their names on some type of figurine or clay bowl and then smashing it. Many times sections of the text included what they thought were evil spiritual forces and specific enemies at whom the curse was aimed. By destroying the figurine or bowl the curser cast a spell over their enemies by symbolizing their demise. This may have been done by the man in Leviticus as he was from an Egyptian Father and had come out from Egypt and so would have been familiar with this process. He may have been struggling with another Israelite who was trying to prevent this “curse” from occurring.

There is a text, in various versions, on several figurines, which contains the earliest-known mention of Jerusalem (Egyptian: ’wš’mm). This was much prior to it becoming the capital of Ancient Israel. In the cursing section devoted to Asiatic peoples, more than two dozen are named, including many other cities that we know of from the Bible, including Ashkelon and Hazor.

Damning the innocent is a sin in Judaism and God holds one accountable. When someone tries to condemn or curse an innocent they are attempting to usurp that which only belongs to God. This is a supreme act of arrogance and in Psalms 94 God is called on to punish the arrogant. This is what subjected the man in Leviticus to death as God was innocent.

While we are far removed from the life and times of Moses and Job, what we need to see in this is the fact that we as believers should take pains to not Blame God for our circumstances or Curse God because other people are somehow blessed. Both of these acts have a purpose behind them and that is ultimately what God judges. We are to be one with His purpose and we can’t be if we are blaming others or cursing God. God however is always there if we just call out to him in a true spirit of repentance. The only way for us to commit an unforgivable sin is to walk away from God and allow ourselves to sit in judgment as God in our lives.


LoverForJesus on May 17, 2015:

I agree. That's why I like John Pipers definition of this sin. He claims it to be an act of resistance which belittles the Holy Spirit so grievously where it leaves with its convicting power forever.

royblizzard (author) from Austin / Leander, Texas on May 17, 2015:

Lover for Jesus, I do agree with you that there is more than just attributing the works of the Holy Spirit to the Devil and that is part of my point. However, Jesus was a part of the Pharisaical branch of Judaism and only a part of the Pharisees rejected Jesus and His teachings. Testing the Spirits is important for believers and is often not utilized and is one of the reasons the church is so ineffective today. Many of the Pharisees probably followed Jesus, but it was a relatively small group of the Pharisees and Sadducees that were in positions of power that opposed Jesus as He posed a threat to their power structure. We have to remember that the Pharisees were the largest of the over 23 sects of Judaism in Jesus' day so for many "Not to believe" isn't any different than many in the churches who don't believe either. If we continue to ignore the knocking on our door then eventually it will be impossible for us to find God as the pharoah - Moses' brother found out.

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LoverForJesus on May 16, 2015:

Here is why I don't believe that the unpardonable sin is just simply attributing the works of the Holy Spirit to the Devil. In 1 John 1:4 We are told to test the spirits. Ephesians 5:11 tells us that we should have no fellowship with the fruits of darkness but expose such. So now you have the idea that if you accidentally attribute the works of the Holy Spirit then you're damned, yet we are told to test the spirits and if we believe something not to be of God we should be exposing it. What happens if you make a mistake while testing the spirits? What happens if something is of God and you make a miscalculation? That's more the reason why the unpardonable sin is not just simply attributing a work of the Holy Spirit to the Devil. We need to remember the Pharisees were opposed to Jesus and continually rejected him at every turn. In fact the Pharisees accused Jesus in the book of Matthew TWICE! I think it becomes obvious that this sin is not a slip of the tongue or accidental, but more deliberate premeditated slander towards the truth, and the Holy Spirit. The Pharisees knew Jesus had been performing miracles by the Spirit of God but decided to resist and slander the Holy Spirit for their own prideful motives. Their hearts had become so hard to the point where they would never repent! The Pharisees were intent and unrepentant and opposed to the truth as much as possible. This sin is not committed with mere words, but with a hard and unrepentant heart.

royblizzard (author) from Austin / Leander, Texas on May 13, 2013:

Hi Deborah, No don't get me wrong, I was just restating so readers could follow your quotes to my article. You actually gave more references which are helpful to the readers. Thanks.

Deborah Sexton on May 11, 2013:

So, you don't like someone agreeing with you?

royblizzard (author) from Austin / Leander, Texas on May 03, 2013:

Deborah, you have just stated what I already stated in my article, "One can’t actually place a “curse” on God, but one can curse God by denying His power and purposes and acting out or stating hateful things about God and this enacts judgment of oneself by claiming Godship over their own life. "

Deborah Sexton on May 03, 2013:

Luke 12:10

10 And whosoever shall speak a word against the Son of man, it shall be forgiven him: but unto him that blasphemeth against the Holy Ghost it shall not be forgiven.

Deborah Sexton on May 03, 2013:

The unpardonable sin is attributing the works of the Holy Ghost (sacred power of God) to the Devil

They said he cast out the devils because he had Beelzebub.

Mark 3:22, 23, 28-30

22 And the scribes which came down from Jerusalem said, He hath Beelzebub, and by the prince of the devils casteth he out devils.

23 And he called them unto him, and said unto them in parables, How can Satan cast out Satan?

28 Verily I say unto you, All sins shall be forgiven unto the sons of men, and blasphemies wherewith soever they shall blaspheme:

29 But he that shall blaspheme against the Holy Ghost hath never forgiveness, but is in danger of eternal damnation.

30 Because they said, He hath an unclean spirit.

Adam Wasson on January 29, 2013:

So bottom line you don't think I'm separated from God forever for what I did? That's good.

royblizzard (author) from Austin / Leander, Texas on January 28, 2013:

One enacts judgment of oneself by claiming Godship over their own life. By you concentrating all this energy on something that God has already forgiven you are enacting judgment on yourself irregardless of what God desires. Forget about this and move on to a better existence with God instead of trying to separate yourself from Him.

Adam Wasson on January 28, 2013:

Saying profane things, bad words, at the Holy Spirit as the direct object. Many have done this and have posted online thinking they can never be forgiven.

royblizzard (author) from Austin / Leander, Texas on January 28, 2013:

As I asked before, What do you think this means, "swearing at" the Holy Spirit?

Adam Wasson on January 28, 2013:

Well it says in the Bible that you can say anything against the Son of Man (Jesus) and he will forgive you but if you say anything against the Holy Spirit he will not forgive. That is why I was worried that God wouldn't forgive me.

royblizzard (author) from Austin / Leander, Texas on January 28, 2013:

As I said before, there isn't anything that is unforgivable if you ask for it. Just curious, but how exactly would you go about swearing at the Holy Spirit in such a way that God would strike you down or refuse to forgive you?

Adam Wasson on January 28, 2013:

Sorry to continue to bother you. But isn't it "speaking against the Holy Spirit" to swear at Him. Isn't that unforgivable?

royblizzard (author) from Austin / Leander, Texas on January 27, 2013:

No Adam, as it states God is faithful and just.

Adam Wasson on January 27, 2013:

Do you think there's a possibility that I can repent but God isn't offering forgiveness because of the nature of the sin?

royblizzard (author) from Austin / Leander, Texas on January 27, 2013:

Whether it is or isn't is not the point, the only thing that is not forgivable is to not ask for forgiveness. The relationship between you and God is supposed to be based on intimacy and if you didn't ask God for forgiveness when you spoke badly of him or wronged him then there would be no intimacy and no relationship.

Adam Wasson on January 27, 2013:

Isn't this cursing and reviling that you were talking about?

royblizzard (author) from Austin / Leander, Texas on January 26, 2013:

Yes Adam as long as you are sorry about it and ask forgiveness for it.

Adam Wasson on January 25, 2013:

Really, so I'm forgiven, a swear word at the Holy Spirit

royblizzard (author) from Austin / Leander, Texas on January 25, 2013:

I doubt that God even bothered since He hears it a million times a day.

Adamthebomb on January 24, 2013:

I said the F word at the Holy Spirit can this ever be forgiven?

royblizzard (author) from Austin / Leander, Texas on April 21, 2012:

David, You are worrying about something that is only an issue if you want it to be. If you do something and ask forgiveness for it God is faithful to forgive you. Just don't go out and do it again and again. That shows you are just walking away from God.

David T. Tarver on April 20, 2012:

The blasphemy against the spirit means cursing the Holy Spirit and talking obsenities about it. Denying the Holy Spirit is denying, not blaspheming. I hate to say it I'm scared senseless and I can't do anything about it. I'm scared for myself and for the people. Pray for me and I thank you. I looked it up in the World Book Dictionary and it said cursing is blasphemy. So if the Devil says curse the Holy Spirit, don't believe him because he is a liar. God bless you and have a good life my friends. Pray for me my life is in a disarray I blasphemed the holy spirit when I was drunk, I just got out of prison, I'm really homeless and unemployed and my life just can't get any worst than this. I thought of suicide plenty of times and I know there must be someone out there loving toward a reject like me. I'm sorry God for anything that's that indecent and improper. I love God like anyone else would and I would hate to forfeit my very soul for the everlasting fire. Help and pray for me

royblizzard (author) from Austin / Leander, Texas on May 21, 2011:

HaSatan is what the Hebrew says. the Ha is equal to our word "the". Satan means "deceiver", so combined you have "The Deceiver". I will write an article about all this someday soon, lol. I've been pretty busy with what I've already got posted and a couple of new ones I working on. Keep asking good questions.

Holly Mackenzie Cupp from United States on May 20, 2011:

what is "HaSatan?" I'm assuming it's just another way to say Satan I was just curious what the Ha stands for...

Holly Mackenzie Cupp from United States on May 20, 2011:

Before I read this one let me say this is a question I've asked more than once! Ok, now I'm going to read it.

royblizzard (author) from Austin / Leander, Texas on May 08, 2011:

HaSatan is called the "deceiver" for a reason Bob. He would love for us to walk away from God and reject the urgings of the Holy Spirit to come to the Father. Misunderstandings of Scripture and misteachings of Scripture go hand in hand with HaSatan.

Bob Baker on May 08, 2011:

in studying this "unpardonable sin", I believe it basically falls into two activities; one that man rejects the work of the Holy Spirit that is actively seeking men, which of course results in never receiving redemption. Scripture says that the work of the Spirit is to reveal God to man, etc.; Second I believe attributing the work of the Spirit, which is healings, miracles, etc. to the Devil as Jesus was accused of and happens today.

I believe many well meaning but ignorant and mis-taught Christians fall into the latter category. Healings and miracles that I have seen in my life, family and friends are called fake and the work of Satan. It's the only thing Satan uses that causes people to seek and worship Christ even more!!

So, I believe rejecting salvation through the Spirit and calling those things that are the work of the Spirit evil constitutes blaspheming the Spirit. It grieves me when I hear Christians railing against those that "speak in tongues", and deny healing and miracles, for they are in jeopardy.

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