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What is Blasphemy Against the Holy Spirit?

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A site visitor, Shaun writes:

"Jesus refers to sin and blasphemy against the Holy Spirit as unforgivable sin. What are these sins and what constitutes blasphemy? Sometimes I feel I may have sinned."

The verse Shaun refers to is found in Mark 3:29 - But whoever blasphemes against the Holy Spirit will never be forgiven; he is guilty of an eternal sin. (NIV) (Blasphemy against the Holy Spirit is also referenced in Matthew 12:31-32 and Luke 12:10).

Shaun is not the first person to be challenged with questions about the meaning of this phrase "blasphemy against the Holy Spirit" or "blasphemy against the Holy Ghost." Many Bible scholars have pondered this question. I have personally come to peace with a very simple explanation.

Current Status

According to Merriam - Webster dictionary the word "blasphemy" means "the act of insulting or showing contempt or lack of reverence for God; the act of claiming the attributes of deity; irreverence toward something considered sacred."

Background

The Bible says in 1 John 1:9, "If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness." (NIV) This verse, and many others that speak of God's forgiveness, seem to be in contrast with Mark 3:29 and this concept of an unforgivable sin. So, what constitutes blasphemy against the Holy Spirit, the eternal sin that can never be forgiven?

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