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← I'm 99% Sure I Committed the Unpardonable Sin - Ask Pastor Tim

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Showing Revision 5 created 03/22/2018 by Carrie Spradlin.

  1. Maybe I've said this before,

  2. the two topics that seem to be
  3. the most sought after,
  4. of the most interest that James posts,
  5. it seems like either have to do
  6. with the battle against
    sexual sin and temptation,
  7. or this one classic question
  8. has to do with the unpardonable sin.
  9. And we've dealt with it.
  10. We had a special -
  11. we filmed a special interview basically
  12. where I dealt with that,
  13. and then have we ever dealt with it
  14. in any other APT's?
  15. Five times?
  16. So, that's how often
    this situation comes up.
  17. Let me read it to you.
  18. "I've committed the unforgivable sin -
  19. 99% chance.
  20. I just want to ask you
  21. what happens when you commit it?
  22. Because here's what happened to me.
  23. Everything went away.
  24. Honestly, everything.
  25. Even temptations now - I have none."
  26. I don't think that's exactly
    what he means to say.
  27. I think he means that
    even with temptations,
  28. everything has gone away.
  29. He has no ability to resist or fight
  30. I think is what he means.
  31. "Emotions - I have only fear.
  32. I don't even love my family anymore.
  33. It all happened two days ago
  34. after I blasphemed the Holy Spirit
  35. in my mind.
  36. I didn't mean the words that I said,
  37. but somehow I said them from my heart
  38. in my mind.
  39. It was just like in one
    second, there it was.
  40. I cannot believe it.
  41. I asked God if I've really done this,
  42. and my conscience says that I did.
  43. I've been begging for forgiveness
    and nothing happened.
  44. I cannot recognize when
    I commit sin anymore.
  45. I'm not being convicted.
  46. I wish I was never born."
  47. Now, let me just say this.

  48. When a person is perceived
  49. to be struggling,
  50. oftentimes what that provokes,
  51. or we think should be provoked from us
  52. is pity.
  53. But the thing is with spiritual things,
  54. sometimes the things
    that people struggle with
  55. or the problems that they have
  56. is not actually something to be pitied;
  57. it's something that they
    are to be blamed for.
  58. There are ways of handling
  59. problems that people have
  60. that can seem less than compassionate.
  61. I feel like I have read so many -
  62. this is the classic question.
  63. There are so many individuals.
  64. I've spent I don't know how much time
  65. with people on the phone
  66. and by email,
  67. and if I've spent that much time,
  68. James has probably spent a
    hundred times that amount.
  69. Craig is answering.
  70. He's dealing with that.
  71. Do you ever give those things to Jeff?
  72. James: A lot of the unpardonable
    sin ones Jeff gets. Yes.
  73. Tim: Okay.
  74. So here's Ichabod Spencer.

  75. This man lived about 200 years ago.
  76. He was a pastor in the northeast.
  77. He wrote this book.
  78. I highly recommend it.
  79. It's called "A Pastor's Sketches."
  80. What this book is -
  81. now you talk about photographic memory -
  82. he must have had a photographic memory.
  83. He could interview somebody
  84. and then sit down and write
  85. and record the conversation that he had
  86. word for word.
  87. And this is what we have here.
  88. We have him dealing with people -
  89. both Christians in struggles that they had
  90. and unbelievers -
  91. him dealing with them
    in an evangelistic sense.
  92. It's an extremely helpful book.
  93. He deals with some problems
  94. that are timeless.
  95. They're not just things people
    struggled with 200 years ago.
  96. And here is a short chapter
  97. where he deals with a young lady
  98. who believed that she
    committed the unpardonable sin.
  99. And I want you all to hear it.
  100. Because what has struck me
  101. about the vast majority of the people
  102. that think that they've committed
    the unpardonable sin,
  103. is even if you could convince
    them that they hadn't,
  104. I'm not really convinced these people
  105. are lining up to be saved.
  106. I think the real problem is
  107. they think that it's no
    longer within their capacity
  108. to be saved when they want to be saved
  109. and that's what concerns them.
  110. Not that they really want to be saved;
  111. they just want to know that they can be
  112. if they want to.
  113. And they've done something,
  114. and whether the devil's involved in it
  115. and whispering in their ear
  116. and condemning them,
  117. or trying to convince them
    that they've committed it
  118. when they haven't committed it,
  119. I don't know.
  120. How much it's their own conscience;
  121. how much it's their own ignorance.
  122. But listen to this.

  123. "Her most common topic..."
  124. This young lady he's speaking to.
  125. "Her most common topic
  126. was the magnitude of her sins.
  127. She was such a sinner
  128. that there was no mercy for her."
  129. And he would try to convince her
  130. the blood of Jesus Christ cleanseth
  131. from all sin.
  132. Well, at this point, he doensn't know
  133. that she thinks she has committed
  134. the unpardonable sin.
  135. He's pressing her.
  136. He's visiting with her from time to time.
  137. "One day, as I was urging this point,
  138. and entreating her to be reconciled to God
  139. by yielding her heart to the persuasions
  140. of the Holy Spirit,
  141. she said to me,
  142. 'I believe I've committed
    the unpardonable sin.'"
  143. Now listen to how he interacts with her.
  144. "What makes you think so?"
  145. See, that's a good question to ask people.
  146. People who come along and say,
  147. "I've committed the unpardonable sin."
  148. Well, ask them why they think so?
  149. Because what you want to be
  150. is you want to be a soul doctor.
  151. You want to try to help people.
  152. Why would they think
    that they committed it?
  153. "'Well, I feel so,' she said hesitatingly.
  154. 'What makes you feel so?'
  155. 'Well, the Lord would have forgiven me
  156. before this time if there was
  157. any forgiveness for me.'"
  158. And he says to her,
  159. "He will forgive you now
  160. if you will repent of sin
  161. and trust in the redemption of Christ."
  162. Now listen, no matter what anybody says
  163. they think they've done,
  164. I'll guarantee you this,
  165. if somebody repents and trusts
  166. the redemption of Christ,
  167. they will be saved.
  168. You say what if they've
    committed the unpardonable sin?
  169. I don't care what they've committed.
  170. If they will trust Christ,
  171. Jesus said He will not turn away anybody
  172. that comes to Him.
  173. That's what He says.
  174. And so that's a good
    place to go with people.
  175. No matter what you think
  176. that you've committed,
  177. if you will repent of sin
  178. and trust in the redemption of Christ,
  179. He will forgive you now.
  180. That's based on His promises.
  181. "'No,' said she,

  182. 'I've committed the unpardonable sin.
  183. There is no forgiveness for me.'
  184. She wept and sobbed aloud."
  185. So this isn't superficial with her.
  186. This is deep. She feels this.
  187. "Said I, 'How long have you been thinking
  188. that you committed the unpardonable sin?'
  189. She answered, 'I have
    known it a long time.'"
  190. See, that was a good
    first question he asked.

  191. What makes you think you've committed it?
  192. Now, here's a good question too
  193. when somebody asks it.
  194. What is the unpardonable sin?
  195. You know, you get a lot of people
  196. that think they've committed it.
  197. (incomplete thought)
  198. Listen to how she answers.
  199. "'What is the unpardonable sin?'
  200. She answered, 'the sin
    against the Holy Ghost
  201. which hath never forgiveness
  202. neither in this world
  203. nor in the world to come.'"
  204. But see, although that's
    correct what she said,
  205. that isn't what the sin is.
  206. "He says, 'What is the sin
    against the Holy Ghost?'
  207. After much hesitation, she replied,
  208. 'It is the sin that
    Jesus Christ mentioned,
  209. speaking against the Holy Ghost.'
  210. He asked her, 'Have you been
  211. speaking against the Holy Ghost?'
  212. 'Oh no, I have not done that,' said she.
  213. 'What then do you mean?
  214. What is your unpardonable sin?'
  215. She gave no answer."
  216. You see, that's the thing that you would
  217. ask somebody is
  218. have you been speaking against the Spirit?
  219. I mean, you remember what those Jews did?
  220. They were saying that Jesus
    had an unclean spirit.
  221. (incomplete thought)
  222. And they were doing it maliciously.
  223. They were doing it willfully; purposely.
  224. It's not like a thought
    shot through their minds,
  225. and they're like, "Oh no!
    I thought that thought!
  226. Now I've committed the unpardonable sin!"
  227. They're attacking Christ.
  228. They're maliciously saying,
  229. "He casts out demons
    by the prince of demons."
  230. You see what they're doing?
  231. And she said, "No, I have not been."
  232. "She gave no answer.
  233. I continued to ask,
  234. 'When did you commit
    this unpardonable sin?'
  235. She said nothing.
  236. 'Tell me what it is.' She said nothing.
  237. 'How came you to commit it?'
  238. She said nothing.
  239. 'What makes you think
    you've committed it?'
  240. She said, 'God would have forgiven me
  241. before this time if I
    had not committed it.'
  242. 'Before this time? What do you mean?'
  243. 'Why I have been a great while
  244. seeking religion.'
  245. He answered, 'Because you've
    been so long seeking it,
  246. you think it's no present fault of yours
  247. that you have not found it?
  248. But that God will not forgive you
  249. because months ago you committed
  250. the unpardonable sin?
  251. Is that what you mean?'
  252. 'Yes sir.'
  253. 'Very well,' said I.
  254. 'I suppose you want nothing more of me
  255. if you're unpardonable.
  256. I can do nothing for
    you if that is the case.
  257. I may as well leave you.
  258. You may go to your closet and tell God
  259. as you kneel before Him
  260. that you are willing to repent,
  261. that you're willing to trust in Christ,
  262. you're willing to obey God in all things,
  263. and that it's no fault of yours
  264. that you're not a Christian.
  265. Tell Him that the only thing now
  266. in your way to salvation
  267. is that old unpardonable sin
  268. which He will not forgive.
  269. Goodbye.'
  270. I left her at once."
  271. Now, you think.

  272. I would say that to this man.
  273. I would say that to anybody
  274. who thinks they've committed
    the unpardonable sin.
  275. See, that gets right to the point.
  276. Are you saying that you're ready
  277. to take Christ at His word
  278. and trust what He's done on that cross?
  279. You're ready to turn from your sin?
  280. You're ready to follow Christ
  281. and take His commandments
  282. as your daily meat, your daily food,
  283. and follow Him?
  284. You're ready to do that?
  285. You desire to do that?
  286. And you're telling me
  287. that you're actually repentant
  288. and you're believing,
  289. but God won't save you
  290. because of that unpardonable sin?
  291. You see, that would make God to be a liar.
  292. Because God says if you trust His Son
  293. you will be saved.
  294. You will not be ashamed.
  295. Scripture says that if you repent,
  296. you will not likewise perish.
  297. If you don't repent, you will perish.
  298. If you do repent, you'll be saved.
  299. God's a liar otherwise.
  300. (incomplete thought)
  301. So, he walks away.

  302. Now listen, let me tell you this.
  303. Too often, especially
    with young believers,
  304. you can feel like if people
  305. are willing to listen,
  306. you'll just talk on and on and on
  307. and on and on and on...
  308. Some of you are getting
    involved in door-to-door ministry.
  309. You do not have to talk to
    somebody for two hours
  310. just because they're willing to talk.
  311. You can tell them the truth.
  312. If they have valid questions,
  313. you can seek to answer them,
  314. but you don't have to go in circles.
  315. You can walk away.
  316. Do you notice that the rich young ruler,
  317. Jesus didn't debate with him.
  318. He laid it all on the
    table, and that was it.
  319. In that case, Jesus wasn't
    the one that walked away;
  320. the rich, young ruler was.
  321. But you know what? Same thing.
  322. You do not have to go on and on.
  323. I'm afraid that many
    less mature Christians
  324. would have sat with this girl
  325. and they would have almost carried her
  326. into the kingdom.
  327. He walked.
  328. And you know He often did that.
  329. You know, Asahel Nettleton -

  330. he was a contemporary of Ichabod Spencer.
  331. He was very greatly used
  332. in the second Great Awakening.
  333. He would walk away from whole churches.
  334. He would stay away from whole churches.
  335. If he saw that their
    attitudes weren't right
  336. about revival;
  337. if he saw that they
    weren't trusting the Lord,
  338. they were trusting him...
  339. (Incomplete thought)
  340. It's not our calling to simply say
  341. as much as we possibly can
  342. to every single person in this world.
  343. In fact, we're told things like
  344. don't cast your pearls before swine.
  345. Jesus told His own disciples
  346. if they don't receive you,
  347. you shake the dust off
    your feet and hit the road.
  348. It's amazing sometimes we feel like
  349. we just have to go on and on and on,
  350. like our multitude of words
  351. is going to persuade them.
  352. You know what? If they
    don't receive the truth,
  353. there's a place just to walk away.
  354. And sometimes that can
    be the most powerful thing,
  355. because what you're doing -
    you gave them the truth,
  356. now you're leaving them with the Lord.
  357. By the way, it's the Lord you need to have
  358. speak to people through your words
  359. more than your multitude of words.
  360. "The next day..."

  361. See, he walked away from her
  362. and how she's not comfortable.
  363. Her own conscience is going crazy.
  364. "The next day, she sent for me again.
  365. I found her as I did not expect."
  366. See, he expected that this
    was going to be beneficial.
  367. And that she'd come to the Lord.
  368. He said, "I found her in
    the same state of mind;
  369. brooding sadly over the unpardonable sin.
  370. After much conversation and aiming
  371. to remove the difficulty
  372. and assuring her of her error,
  373. she still insisted,
  374. 'I've committed the unpardonable sin.
  375. I know I have. I know I have.
  376. I know I have.'
  377. I desired her after a few moments
  378. to quit her agitation
  379. and fix her thoughts on things
  380. which I was going to say to her."
  381. You know what he said to her?
  382. He said young lady,
  383. I'm going to speak to you plainly.
  384. He said you're going to understand
  385. every word I say.
  386. That's good.
  387. "Some of the things which I shall say
  388. may surprise you,
  389. but I want you to remember them.
  390. All along through the summer
  391. I've treated you with the utmost kindness
  392. and indulgence.
  393. I've always come to you
    when you've sent for me
  394. and many times when you
    have not sent for me.
  395. It's because I feel
    kindly towards you still
  396. and wish to do you good
  397. that I shall now say
    some very plain things
  398. which you may not like,
    but they are true."
  399. This is another thing.
  400. If you want to deal with people's souls,
  401. you often have to tell them things
  402. they don't like.
  403. You see, he was a man who knew
  404. when to walk away,
  405. and he was also a man to say
  406. hard things to people.
  407. This is where I'm coming back to this.
  408. You get a person that's struggling
  409. with the unpardonable sin.
  410. Oftentimes the feeling I get
  411. is that the people want pity.
  412. They want you to help them.
  413. They want you to pity them.
  414. They want you to feel bad for them.
  415. They want you to enter in
  416. to their pity party.
  417. Now, you're going to maybe think
  418. what he says is cruel,
  419. but I want you to hear him very carefully.
  420. "First, you say that you have committed
  421. the unpardonable sin,
  422. but you do not believe what you say."
  423. Now, obviously, he got her.
  424. Because he said to her,
  425. have you spoken against the Holy Spirit?
  426. And she said no at first.
  427. And then she couldn't answer.
  428. "And he said,
  429. 'you don't believe what you say.
  430. You believe no such thing.'"
  431. Now look, that's not to say
  432. that there aren't some people
  433. that you come across
    who really do believe it
  434. and may be under a
    vicious attack of the devil.
  435. Bunyan is a great example of that.
  436. He was attacked with that.
  437. I remember that happening to me
  438. after I was saved.
  439. It didn't happen when I was lost.
  440. It happened after I was saved.
  441. I was bombarded with these thoughts.
  442. But he said, "you believe no such thing.
  443. You know indeed that you're a sinner,
  444. but you do not believe
    that you've committed
  445. the unpardonable sin.
  446. You're not honest;
  447. not sincere when you say so.
  448. You do not believe it.'"
  449. Anyways, he's just there -
  450. he's pegging her on her own words.
  451. Some people do actually believe it.
  452. But I think what he says after this
  453. is so applicable to so
    many of these cases.
  454. "Second, it is pride.

  455. A foolish pride of a wicked heart
  456. which makes you say
  457. that you've committed
    the unpardonable sin."
  458. Now, I suspect if I would
    have read that and said,
  459. okay, what would you all say to her,
  460. probably none of you would have
    raised your hand and said,
  461. "I'd have said that she had a foolish,
  462. prideful, wicked heart..."
  463. which makes him say
  464. that he's committed the unpardonable sin.
  465. You say, how is that?
  466. Listen.
  467. "Influenced by pride
  468. you half-strive -
  469. only half after all -
  470. to believe you've done it."
  471. And you know what he says?
  472. You wish to exalt yourself.
  473. You say how?
  474. You see, that's what pride is.
  475. Pride is when we exalt ourselves.
  476. How can it be that many people
  477. who claim to commit the unpardonable sin -
  478. how would that be an exalting of self?
  479. What sort of sin is an unpardonable sin?
  480. It's like the sin of all sins.
  481. It's like you're a sinner greater
  482. and further and blacker and deeper
  483. and darker and more sinister
  484. and more debauched and more depraved
  485. than anybody else.
  486. You're the worst of the worst.
  487. It's one thing if the Spirit
    of God has broken you
  488. and you can say like Paul,
  489. "I'm the chief of sinners."
  490. That's one thing.
  491. When you're able to say that in humility.
  492. When you're able to
    say that in brokenness,
  493. but you also are able to cling to Christ
  494. and trust what He's done.
  495. It's another thing when a person says
  496. they're this horrible sinner
  497. and then they turn around and say
  498. but I won't take God at His word
  499. and trust His Son.
  500. He says, "you wish to exalt yourself.
  501. You pretend that it's some great
  502. and uncommon thing which keeps you
  503. from being a Christian.
  504. It's the unpardonable sin.
  505. Pride lies at the bottom of all this."
  506. And then third, right on the same note.

  507. "You have no occasion for this pride."
  508. He says there's nothing
    uncommon about you.
  509. You're just an average sinner.
  510. "You're very much like other sinners.
  511. It's not likely that you could commit
  512. the unpardonable sin,
  513. even if you should try.
  514. I don't think you know enough to do it."
  515. You see, one of the things that the Jews -
  516. they had great light.
  517. Jesus was doing these miracles
  518. right in front of them.
  519. They knew - even in their own councils,
  520. they would say,
  521. we know that nobody can do these things
  522. unless God is with them.
  523. That a notable miracle has been done?
  524. They knew.
  525. And they would look at that.
  526. They would watch Jesus heal.
  527. They would know the
    miracles that took place,
  528. and they knew miracles took place.
  529. They knew He cast out demons.
  530. They knew He healed the sick.
  531. They knew that He did this.
  532. And they looked at it and they said
  533. the devil enables Him to do that.
  534. He's just saying the unpardonable sin
  535. is basically this -
  536. it's the idea that you have all this light
  537. on who Christ is,
  538. on who the Spirit is,
  539. and you specifically say -
  540. with all that light -
  541. you specifically blaspheme
    the Spirit of God.
  542. (Incomplete thought)
  543. He's not even imagining that she has
  544. sufficient light to do that.
  545. "'Why?' said she,
  546. 'Is there not such a sin?'
  547. 'Well, yes, but you don't know what it is,
  548. and you don't know enough to commit it.'"
  549. Now, this fourth one I think is huge too.

  550. He says this to her,
  551. "You are one of the most self-righteous
  552. creatures I ever saw."
  553. So he's told her she's full of pride.
  554. Now, one of the most self-
    righteous creatures I ever saw.
  555. Now you have to stop and think.
  556. Why would somebody be considered
  557. by Spencer to be this mass
    of self-righteousness?
  558. See, I think this is what you
    want to remember especially
  559. in dealing with people who believe
  560. they've committed the unpardonable sin.
  561. "You try to think
  562. that you're not to blame
    for your irreligion."
  563. You see? It becomes an excuse.
  564. "Well, I can't become a Christian."
  565. "I can't repent."
  566. "I can't fall down before
    God in surrender."
  567. "I can't." Why?
  568. "I've committed the unpardonable sin."
  569. In other words, it's not my fault.
  570. And you know what it implies?
  571. Well, I would do all of
    that if God would let me,
  572. but God won't let me
    because I've committed
  573. the unpardonable sin.
  574. He says to her,
  575. "You try to think that you're willing
  576. to be a Christian,
  577. and would be a Christian,
  578. if it were not for that unpardonable sin
  579. which you try in your pride
  580. to believe you've committed.
  581. You pretend that it's not your present
  582. and cherished sin which keeps you
  583. in your impenitence."
  584. Now that's huge.
  585. You see what he's saying to her?
  586. The reason you're not a Christian
  587. is because you've got sin in your life
  588. that you love,
  589. and you're not willing to let go of.
  590. And what you're wanting to do
  591. is blame God for the fact,
  592. because God invented this unpardonable sin
  593. and you want to convince
    yourself you've committed it
  594. and therefore give you an excuse
  595. as to why you're not turning from your sin
  596. and embracing the sacrifice of Christ.
  597. That's exactly it.
  598. And that is the feeling that I get
  599. from most of the people.
  600. You don't get the sense that it's:
  601. "I'm wicked,
  602. and I'm looking to the healing
  603. that's found in Christ's suffering."
  604. That's not it.
  605. It's typically:
  606. "Well, I can't become a Christian.
  607. I just can't." Why?
  608. "I've committed the unpardonable sin."
  609. And what they're implying is,
  610. well, I would become one
  611. if it wasn't for that unpardonable sin.
  612. I would become one if
    it wasn't for the fact
  613. that the doorway's been shut on me.
  614. That's just not true.
  615. The reason they're not becoming Christians
  616. is because they love their sin
  617. and they won't come to the light.
  618. And that's what he's calling out.
  619. "You pretend that it's not your present,
  620. cherished sin which keeps you
  621. in your impenitence.
  622. Oh, you are good enough,
    surely, to repent.
  623. You would repent.
  624. Indeed, you would,
  625. if it were not for that unpardonable sin.
  626. That's your heart -
  627. full of self-righteousness and pride."
  628. Fifth, "Your wicked heart clings

  629. to this idea of the unpardonable sin
  630. as an excuse for your
    continued impenitence;
  631. for your living in the indulgence of sin,
  632. unbelief, and disobedience
    to God every day.
  633. And your excuse will not stand.
  634. You make it insincerely.
  635. It's not the unpardonable sin
  636. which hinders your being a Christian.
  637. It's your wickedness of heart,
  638. your pride, your vanity,
  639. and your insincerity."
  640. And now he's done with her for good.
  641. He says, "I shall never speak again.
  642. I shall never again have anything
  643. to say to you about the unpardonable sin.
  644. If you had any real and
    just conviction of sin,
  645. you would never name
    the unpardonable sin."
  646. You ought to pick up on that too.
  647. When a person truly has a convicting
  648. work of the Spirit,
  649. that Spirit crushes a man
  650. from every dependence in himself.
  651. A God-given, Spirit-given conviction.
  652. That Spirit will cause
    us to look to Christ
  653. and find our hope there
  654. and find our help there.
  655. He's right.
  656. If you had any real and just
  657. conviction of sin,
  658. you would never name the unpardonable sin.
  659. "Some months after this,
  660. she called upon me in deep trouble.
  661. But now her complaint was that
  662. she had a wicked,
    deceitful, and hard heart
  663. opposed to the law of God.
  664. She became finally, as she believed,
  665. a true penitent and professed
    Christianity publicly.
  666. But in all her religious exercises,
  667. there appeared nothing very peculiar
  668. and she never named to me
  669. the unpardonable sin again."
  670. In other words, he just said in the end,
  671. she was just an average sinner.
  672. Then he makes one last statement here.

  673. "True light..."
  674. True light.
  675. "True light in the conscience is one thing
  676. and a deceitful gloom in the proud heart
  677. is quite another."
  678. Do you see the difference?
  679. You get individuals who feel like
  680. they've committed the unpardonable sin,
  681. and it just fills them with this gloom
  682. and this dread.
  683. But he's saying this.
  684. This is what he recognized.
  685. He lived in the day where I believe he saw
  686. five separate revivals.
  687. And he saw when the
    Spirit of God was working
  688. true light in the conscience -
  689. it looked one way.
  690. People felt the weight of their sin,
  691. and they turned to Christ.
  692. And it's as somebody has said before,
  693. once you take a sinner and you show them
  694. indeed truthfully their sin
  695. and you show them the remedy,
  696. the work's done.
  697. They will run to the remedy.
  698. You show them their sickness.
  699. They will run to the doctor.
  700. And that's totally different
  701. than when you get a person
  702. who has a proud heart
  703. coupled with a deceitful gloom.
  704. He says this, "When a sinner
  705. has any just sense of his condition
  706. as alienated from a holy God,
  707. he will not be apt to think
  708. of the unpardonable sin.
  709. Spurious conviction is
    common but useless."
  710. Spurious conviction -
  711. where people are convicted -
  712. spurious means it's no good.
  713. You're all riled up about something
  714. that leads to no good end.
  715. Just thinking you've committed
  716. this unpardonable sin.
  717. Anyway, I thought his treatment of it
  718. goes to the root of exposing
  719. some of the real issues concerning it.
  720. (from the room)

  721. So from that email,
  722. what made you believe
  723. with a limited context,
  724. that this person who emailed in
  725. was just like maybe one of these people
  726. that Spencer dealt with
  727. and not maybe someone like Bunyan
  728. or when he was a young Christian.
  729. I guess how would you maybe
  730. differentiate them?
  731. Tim: Well, I mean the thing was

  732. that if you go back and
    read "Grace Abounding,"
  733. Bunyan's testimony.
  734. When he's under attack
  735. and being tempted to feel that,
  736. he's running to the Word of God.
  737. He's calling upon the Lord.
  738. He's looking to Christ.
  739. That was the same thing I was doing
  740. in the midst of all of it.
  741. Where you have a gloom;
  742. (incomplete thought)
  743. "I've committed the unforgivable sin;
  744. 99% chance.
  745. I just want to ask you what happens
  746. when you commit it,
  747. because here's what happened to me.
  748. It all happened two days ago.
  749. I didn't mean the words that I said..."
  750. So right there I would say
  751. he didn't mean the words that he said.
  752. That's not the unpardonable sin.
  753. If you even start where
    he started with the girl,
  754. this isn't the unpardonable sin.
  755. But the thing is, "I've asked
    God if I've really done this.
  756. My conscience says that I did.
  757. I've been begging for forgiveness.
  758. Nothing happened.
  759. I cannot recognize when
    I commit sin right now.
  760. I'm not being convicted.
  761. I wish I never was born."
  762. You know, "I'm not being convicted,"
  763. and yet, "I'm begging for forgiveness."
  764. Well, what that tells me
  765. is that what he's saying
  766. is I don't even sense my sin;
  767. I don't love my family.
  768. What he's asking forgiveness for
  769. is that this one thought
    shot through his mind.
  770. And I think the real issue
  771. comes back to what was happening there.
  772. Is this really a young man
  773. that's been convicted of the Spirit?
  774. True light in the conscience?
  775. Where he sees himself as a wicked sinner
  776. and is coming to God to
    be pardoned of all of it.
  777. Or, is it really somebody who's wanting
  778. to blame God?
  779. "I've committed the unpardonable sin,
  780. therefore all these things are justifiable
  781. because after all, I've committed
  782. the unpardonable sin and now
  783. God has put me in this place.
  784. He's taken away my love for my family.
  785. I don't have any conviction anymore."
  786. I would just say this -
  787. the same thing that was said to the girl -
  788. so are you saying you would repent
  789. and flee to the cross
  790. if only it wasn't for this
    unpardonable sin?
  791. I think the difference is that Bunyan
  792. was likely already converted.
  793. I was already converted.
  794. I don't doubt that the devil
  795. can play with our minds and thoughts
  796. and consciences on this point.
  797. You come across the fact that
    there's an unpardonable sin
  798. and the devil will be right there
    to tell you you've committed it.
  799. There's no use going.
  800. But I think the thing is
  801. people do all sorts of things
  802. where they heard about
    the unpardonable sin,
  803. the unforgivable sin,
  804. this blaspheming the Holy Spirit,
  805. and then what happens is
  806. they make an oath;
  807. they make some kind of covenant,
  808. they make some kind of commitment,
  809. they vow and then they break it.
  810. We've seen that before.
  811. Or, he has a thought that crosses his mind
  812. and I think that's the question
    that needs to be asked.
  813. What are you saying?
  814. Are you saying that you would repent
  815. and believe and trust Christ
  816. if it just wasn't for this
    unpardonable sin?
  817. I think he's hitting at the root
  818. of a vast ocean
  819. behind these unpardonable sin
  820. questions and concerns,
  821. that is a tremendous self-righteousness.
  822. Obviously, he met repeatedly
  823. with this young lady.
  824. We only have the ability to work
  825. with a paragraph.
  826. So, yes, if Spencer sat down with this guy
  827. and upon much further conversation
  828. and digging have answered differently?
  829. Perhaps.
  830. But I guess, I have this sense
  831. that people are saying:
  832. "Well, yes, I would repent
  833. and I would believe and I would
  834. if it just wasn't for this
    unpardonable sin."
  835. That's a total fallacy.
  836. (from the room)
  837. I guess, yeah, answering emails
  838. this comes up, but I've never
  839. gone out evangelizing
  840. and had a conversation like that.
  841. Tim: No, typically that's
    not the kind of thing
  842. you'd come across evangelizing.
  843. It's the kind of thing
  844. that the very nature of I'll Be Honest
  845. and the fact that we entertain questions
  846. and have this APT
  847. and James is available
  848. and Jeff is available
  849. and Terry and Craig,
  850. that they're answering
    all these questions.
  851. There's a lot of people
    who find this outlet
  852. to try to get some kind of answers
  853. for whatever may be plaguing them
  854. or troubling them.