Blaspheme against the Holy Spirit (Lk 12:10-12:10)

“Everyone

Who speaks a word

Against the Son of Man

Will be forgiven.

But whoever blasphemes

Against the Holy Spirit

Will not be forgiven.”

 

καὶ πᾶς ὃς ἐρεῖ λόγον εἰς τὸν Υἱὸν τοῦ ἀνθρώπου, ἀφεθήσεται αὐτῷ· τῷ δὲ εἰς τὸ Ἅγιον Πνεῦμα βλασφημήσαντι οὐκ ἀφεθήσεται.

 

Luke indicated that Jesus said that everyone who spoke a word (καὶ πᾶς ὃς ἐρεῖ λόγον) against the Son of Man (εἰς τὸν Υἱὸν τοῦ ἀνθρώπου) would be forgiven.  However, whoever blasphemes (βλασφημήσαντι) against the Holy Spirit (τῷ δὲ εἰς τὸ Ἅγιον Πνεῦμα) will not be forgiven (οὐκ ἀφεθήσεται).  There are similar statements to this in Mark, chapter 3:28-30, and Matthew, chapter 12:31-32.  It might be okay to disrespect the Son of Man, but it is quite another thing to speak against or blasphemy the Holy Spirit.  Blasphemy was profaning the name of God.  If you profaned the Holy Spirit you were hopeless.  Only God could forgive sins.  If you gave up on God and his Spirit, there was no hope of forgiveness.  The Son of Man was so human that you could be forgiven for speaking against the Son of Man, Jesus, but not the Holy Spirit.  Matthew indicated that Jesus told them with a solemn proclamation (Διὰ τοῦτο λέγω ὑμῖν) that God would forgive all human sins and blasphemies (πᾶσα ἁμαρτία καὶ βλασφημία ἀφεθήσεται τοῖς ἀνθρώποις).  However, he would not forgive the sin of blasphemy against the Spirit (ἡ δὲ τοῦ Πνεύματος βλασφημία οὐκ ἀφεθήσεται).  Humans could speak against the Son of Man (καὶ ὃς ἐὰν εἴπῃ λόγον κατὰ τοῦ Υἱοῦ τοῦ ἀνθρώπου) and be forgiven (ἀφεθήσεται αὐτῷ).  However, anyone who spoke against the Holy Spirit (ὃς δ’ ἂν εἴπῃ κατὰ τοῦ Πνεύματος τοῦ Ἁγίου) would not be forgiven (οὐκ ἀφεθήσεται αὐτῷ), either now or in the future (οὔτε ἐν τούτῳ τῷ αἰῶνι οὔτε ἐν τῷ μέλλοντι).  Mark had Jesus tell them with a solemn proclamation (Ἀμὴν λέγω ὑμῖν) that God would forgive all the sins of the sons of men (ὅτι πάντα ἀφεθήσεται τοῖς υἱοῖς τῶν ἀνθρώπων) as well as whatever blasphemies they utter (καὶ αἱ βλασφημίαι, ὅσα ἐὰν βλασφημήσωσιν).  These blasphemies were abusive or bad language about God.  However, the blasphemy against the Holy Spirit was in a class all by itself.   Mark indicated that Jesus said that whoever blasphemed against the Holy Spirit (ὃς δ’ ἂν βλασφημήσῃ εἰς τὸ Πνεῦμα τὸ Ἅγιον), would never be forgiven even in eternity (οὐκ ἔχει ἄφεσιν εἰς τὸν αἰῶνα).  He would be guilty of an eternal sin (ἀλλὰ ἔνοχός ἐστιν αἰωνίου ἁμαρτήματος).  Anyone who spoke against the Holy Spirit would not be forgiven either now or in the future, because this blasphemer had an unclean spirit (ὅτι ἔλεγον Πνεῦμα ἀκάθαρτον ἔχει).  Therefore, he could not be cleansed.  Have you ever derided the Holy Spirit?

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Forgive others! (Lk 6:37-6:37)

“Forgive!

Then you will be forgiven.”

 

ἀπολύετε, καὶ ἀπολυθήσεσθε·

 

Luke indicated that Jesus told his followers to forgive others (ἀπολύετε).  Then they would be forgiven (καὶ ἀπολυθήσεσθε).  This saying about forgiveness seems similar to Mark, chapter 11:25, and Matthew, chapter 6:14-15.  Mark indicated that Jesus said that whenever they would stand and pray, they should forgive others, especially if they had anything against anyone.  Then their heavenly Father would also forgive them.  Matthew had Jesus say that their heavenly Father would forgive them if they forgave others for their missteps or trespasses.  On the other hand, if they did not forgive others, their heavenly Father would not forgive them.  This came right after the “Our Father” prayer in Matthew.  Do you really forgive other people?

Glorifying God (Lk 5:25-5:25)

“Immediately,

The paralytic stood up

Before them.

He took

What he had been

Lying on.

He went to his home.

He was glorifying God.”

 

καὶ παραχρῆμα ἀναστὰς ἐνώπιον αὐτῶν, ἄρας ἐφ’ ὃ κατέκειτο, ἀπῆλθεν εἰς τὸν οἶκον αὐτοῦ δοξάζων τὸν Θεόν.

 

The paralyzed man did exactly what Jesus told him to do.  He got up and went to his home.  Jesus had forgiven this man his sins and at the same time cured him of paralysis.  Normally, the power to forgive sins was what only God could do.  Luke said that this paralytic stood up before them (καὶ παραχρῆμα ἀναστὰς ἐνώπιον αὐτῶν).  He took his bed that he had been lying on (ἄρας ἐφ’ ὃ κατέκειτο) and went home (ἀπῆλθεν εἰς τὸν οἶκον αὐτοῦ).  At the same time, he was glorifying or praising God (δοξάζων τὸν Θεόν).  Mark, chapter 2:12, and Matthew, chapter 9:7-8, are similar to Luke, so that Mark might be the source of this saying.  Mark said that the paralyzed man did exactly as Jesus had told him to do.  He stood up and immediately took his pallet bed in front of everybody.  Jesus had forgiven this man’s sins and cured him of paralysis.  How was the power to forgive sins, which only God could do, related to his healing powers?  How were these powers related?

The citation from Isaiah (Mk 4:12-4:12

“Thus,

They may indeed look,

But not perceive.

They may indeed listen,

But not understand.

Thus,

They may not

Turn again

To be forgiven.”

 

ἵνα βλέποντες βλέπωσιν καὶ μὴ ἴδωσιν, καὶ ἀκούοντες ἀκούωσιν καὶ μὴ συνιῶσιν, μή ποτε ἐπιστρέψωσιν καὶ ἀφεθῇ αὐτοῖς.

 

This citation of Isaiah about the people unable to understand the meaning of parables can be found in all 3 synoptic gospels.  Matthew, chapter 13:14-16, had a longer citation from Isaiah with an introduction and a final comment, while Luke, chapter 8:10, had a short summary, like here in Mark.  This prophecy of Isaiah was from chapter 6:9-10, where Isaiah told the people that they were listening without comprehending.  They were looking without understanding.  Their hearts were dull.  Their eyes and ears were closed.  He wanted them not to look with their own eyes, but he wanted them to turn to Yahweh, so that they would be healed.  Mark indicated that they could see, but not perceive (καὶ βλέποντες βλέπωσιν).  They were experiencing and listening (καὶ μὴ ἴδωσιν, καὶ ἀκούοντες), but they could not hear or understand (ἀκούωσιν καὶ μὴ συνιῶσιν).  They would not turn back (καὶ ἐπιστρέψωσιν) and be forgiven (καὶ ἀφεθῇ αὐτοῖς).  The reason that Jesus spoke in parables was that some people would see, but not perceive. They would hear, but not understand what they heard.

The forgiveness of sins (Mk 3:28-3:28)

“Truly!

I say to you!

People will be forgiven

For their sins.

They will be forgiven

For whatever blasphemies

They utter.”

 

Ἀμὴν λέγω ὑμῖν ὅτι πάντα ἀφεθήσεται τοῖς υἱοῖς τῶν ἀνθρώπων, τὰ ἁμαρτήματα καὶ αἱ βλασφημίαι, ὅσα ἐὰν βλασφημήσωσιν·

 

This is the first instance of Mark with a solemn pronouncement of “I say to you!”  There were similar statements like this in Matthew, chapter 12:31, and Luke, chapter 12:10.  Mark has Jesus tell them with a solemn proclamation (Ἀμὴν λέγω ὑμῖν).  God would forgive all human sins of the sons of men (ὅτι πάντα ἀφεθήσεται τοῖς υἱοῖς τῶν ἀνθρώπων) as well as whatever blasphemies they utter (καὶ αἱ βλασφημίαι, ὅσα ἐὰν βλασφημήσωσιν).  These blasphemies were abusive or bad language about God.  This sounds great about everything able to be forgiven.

The paralytic walks away (Mk 2:12-2:12)

“The paralytic

Stood up.

Immediately,

He took his pallet bed.

He went out

Before all of them.

Thus,

They were all amazed.

They glorified God,

Saying.

‘We never saw anything

Like this!’”

 

καὶ ἠγέρθη καὶ εὐθὺς ἄρας τὸν κράβαττον ἐξῆλθεν ἔμπροσθεν πάντων, ὥστε ἐξίστασθαι πάντας καὶ δοξάζειν τὸν Θεὸν λέγοντας ὅτι Οὕτως οὐδέποτε εἴδαμεν.

 

Luke, chapter 5:25-26, and Matthew, chapter 9:7-8, are similar to Mark, so that Mark might be the source of this saying.  Mark said that the paralyzed man did exactly as Jesus had told him to do.  He arose or stood up (καὶ ἠγέρθη).  He immediately took his pallet bed (καὶ εὐθὺς ἄρας τὸν κράβαττον).  He went out from there in front of everybody (ἐξῆλθεν ἔμπροσθεν πάντων).  Jesus had forgiven this man his sins and cured him of paralysis.  How was the power to forgive sins, which only God could do, related to his healing powers?  They were all amazed, or marveled (ὥστε ἐξίστασθαι πάντας) at what they had just witnessed.  They glorified, honored, or praised God (καὶ δοξάζειν τὸν Θεὸν).  They said to one another that they had never seen anything like this before (λέγοντας ὅτι Οὕτως οὐδέποτε εἴδαμεν).  Jesus had a lot of power.

Jesus poses a question (Mk 2:9-2:9)

“Which is easier,

To say to the paralytic?

‘Your sins are forgiven!’

Or to say?

‘Rise!

Take up your pallet!

Walk!’”

 

τί ἐστιν εὐκοπώτερον, εἰπεῖν τῷ παραλυτικῷ Ἀφίενταί σου αἱ ἁμαρτίαι, ἢ εἰπεῖν Ἔγειρε καὶ ἆρον τὸν κράβαττόν σου καὶ περιπάτει;

 

Luke, chapter 5:23, and Matthew, chapter 9:8, are almost word for word to Mark, so that Mark might be the source of this saying.  Mark said that Jesus posed the question which was it easier to do, (τί ἐστιν εὐκοπώτερον) to say to the paralytic (εἰπεῖν τῷ παραλυτικῷ) that your sins are forgiven (Ἀφίενταί σου αἱ ἁμαρτίαι) or to say (ἢ εἰπεῖν) rise up or get up, take your pallet, and walk (Ἔγειρε καὶ ἆρον τὸν κράβαττόν σου καὶ περιπάτει)?  Jesus seems to make an equivalence between the two optional sayings.