Rejecting God The Holy Ghost
We have now come to the Scriptures that teach that a man may blaspheme the Holy Ghost and be forever lost. There is, and always has been, and probably always will be, a great deal of talk about sin against the Holy Ghost, and thousands of people wonder by day and by night what the sin against the Holy Ghost is, and they seem to think it is some one act that they might commit and not know just what they had done and just when it was done, and finally be lost, but those are not the real facts in the case at all.
It is true that the Son of God says there is no forgiveness for the blasphemy against the Holy Ghost, but that doesn’t teach that it is any worse to sin against the Holy Ghost than it is to sin against the Father. Here is the idea: There was a time when men dealt with the Father and were under His dispensation, and when they rejected Him they were lost, world without end. Then the blessed Son of God came on the stage of action, and His dispensation began, and they rejected Him and were lost and went to hell in solid platoons. Then the Son passed from the stage of action and now the Father and Son in their council chambers of the skies arranged to give man one more chance, so they sent the blessed Holy Ghost into the world and He enters upon His dispensation.
Now think of it in this light: The Father has had His dispensation and has passed off the stage and sat down in His own council chamber, and the blessed Son came onto the stage of life and was rejected and put to death, and so He passed off of the stage of action, and now the Holy Ghost comes to the rescue of fallen man. Now, the only way to reach the Father or the Son either one, is by or through the blessed Holy Ghost. Don’t you see at a glance if He is rejected and grieved and blasphemed that the man is left here in this world without one ray of hope? For the Father is gone, and the Son is gone, and now we have grieved away the Holy Ghost and He is gone, and the entire Godhead has been offended and rejected and there is no power in the universe of God to reach man’s case. When we see the facts as they really are, we are not surprised to hear the blessed Son of God giving out these awful warnings to man not to sin against the Holy Ghost, for He knew that if they did that, they were lost forever.
We want to look at a few of the scriptures that give such awful warnings and see if we are right in our conclusions, and we think that we are. First, we look at Matt. 12:31. “Therefore, I say unto you, all manner of sin and blasphemy shall be forgiven unto men, but the blasphemy against the Holy Ghost shall not be forgiven unto men.” Here is one scripture that shows if a man commits this crime or this sin he is a lost man, but don’t you see that he is not any worse by sinning against the Holy Ghost than he was when he sinned against the Father until he was lost? Don’t you remember that we have just showed you in one of the preceding chapters that the people sinned against the Father and rejected Him and mocked His prophets and shut their ears and made their hearts as an adamant stone? And the Book says that God’s wrath was kindled against them until there was no remedy. Now in the above, we have the picture of a man sinning against the Holy Ghost until there is no remedy. Now reader, I ask you which one is the worse off if they are both rejected and both cut off from heaven and both are doomed to an eternity of night and despair? There is no difference in the two men in the world; both lost. One rejected the Father and blasphemed the Father until he was lost, and the other rejected the Holy Ghost and blasphemed the Holy Ghost until he was lost.
But we turn and read some more scripture on this awful subject. We notice St. Mark’s Gospel, 3rd Chapter and read the 28th, 29th and 30th verses. “Verily I say unto you, All sins shall be forgiven unto the sons of men, and blasphemies wherewith soever they shall blaspheme: But he that shall blaspheme against the Holy Ghost hath never forgiveness, but is in danger of eternal damnation; Because they said, he hath an unclean spirit.”
Now dear reader, because the blessed Son of God said in the above scripture that if a man blasphemed the Holy Ghost he had never forgiveness, they seem to think that it was worse to sin against the Holy Ghost than it was to sin against the Father or the Son, and there are one or two passages of scripture that would seem to teach that doctrine, but If it were properly understood it doesn’t teach it at all. But here is the idea: As we are in the last dispensation there is no hope of the man when he has separated himself from the Father and the Son, and now blasphemes the Holy Ghost. There is no way on the face of the earth for that man ever to get to God, for he has closed every avenue between himself and God, and is lost, because he has grieved away the Holy Ghost. Many good people seem to think that the blasphemy against the Holy Ghost is some one act that a man might accidentally commit and probably not know just what he had done, or just when he had done the thing; but that is not the idea at all. Here is the real Bible meaning of the Scripture: The blessed Holy Ghost comes to the man and offers to take him to Christ, and lead him through the world, and lead him out of sin into eternal life, and the man deliberately rejects the blessed Holy Ghost and grieves Him away, and for the time being the Holy Ghost goes and leaves the man to himself. After a time He returns, and the man is convicted again, and this time the Holy Spirit struggles with him, and the struggle is a desperate one, but finally the man is victorious and succeeds in driving the Holy Ghost away. Then he has hardened his heart much harder than it was before, and he begins to laugh at the idea of a preacher scaring him with the graveyard, or with his hell, as he calls it. Now he can sit up and tell you that no man can move him, and he seems to think that he is now much smarter than the average man, and is free from all these weaknesses that the average man is troubled with.
But the Holy Ghost hasn’t given him up yet, and finally the blessed Holy Ghost comes to see him again, and the struggle is something awful. The man fights and the Holy Ghost struggles with him, and the man becomes so restless that he is afraid to go to sleep at night, and he wonders if he will have to yield. But the devil is there in all of his mighty power, and with all of his lies and deceitfulness he brings to bear on the mind of the man that it will ruin him for this world if he surrenders to Christ and there will be no more happiness for him in this world; that he will be all tied down with preachers, and that he can’t go to the circus or the theatre or the race course any more if he gets religion. The devil is so shrewd that he makes that poor, deceived man believe that no worse calamity in the world could come on him than to become a Christian. The Holy Ghost struggles on and the man puts up the fight of his life, but finally the Holy Ghost says, “Well I will let him alone, He is joined to his idols.” That man comes out more than a conqueror and succeeds in driving the Holy Ghost away one time more.
Now just think of that man’s condition. There is no way in the universe to make his case worse than it is. He can laugh now all he pleases at the weakness of his neighbors, but the man is doomed. He can walk about, but his face looks like a tombstone. Now he can tell you that he is beyond graveyard stories of the weak-minded preachers, and as to their hell that they preach about, he takes no stock in any such stuff as hell and judgment days. The devil tells him that he has a long life before him and much happiness. He is not bothered with the preachers, has no trouble with the Spirit of God to dog his tracks, and he is a free man to do as he pleases. The poor man goes on as completely lost as if he were in the pit. The devil whispers to him that no preacher can scare him now, and the deluded soul chuckles in his sleeve that he has defied the God of heaven, and has rejected the Son of God, and the Holy Ghost doesn’t bother him any more. Now he is delivered from all of this tomfoolery about getting religion, and he goes on to the Judgment Day a God-forgetter, and a Christ-despiser, and a Holy Ghost-rejecter.
Now brother, we have before us a man who has blasphemed the Holy Ghost and who is as much lost as if he were already damned. We have before us a man who is damned and is still above ground. There is no use in the world for you to tell the people that you don’t know what the sin against the Holy Ghost is, for the rejecting of the Holy Ghost is without doubt the sin that we have heard so much talk about. Don’t you see that the man is without one ray of hope, and don’t you see that there is no power in the world now that can bring that man to God the Father, or to the blessed Son of God? The Spirit is now grieved away and there is no power on the face of the earth that can reach that man’s case.
Now we turn and read a lesson from St. Luke’s Gospel, 12:10, and you will see that it is the same as the rest. Notice how it reads: “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.” Here is the above idea: You may speak against the Son of God and find pardon, but when you have sinned against the Holy Ghost until He leaves you, there is no other court of appeal. You have cut the last shore line from the whole Trinity, and now you are drifting, and the longer you drift the further you go, and the harder you become, and the more you become like the devil in your heart and nature. Of course, when He said that if you speak against the Son of Man that it shall be forgiven, He did not mean to teach there that it was not a sin to do it, and a sin that will damn the soul if it is not repented of, for we read in the 9th Chapter of Luke and the 9th verse: “But he that denieth me before men shall be denied before the angels of God,” so this verse shows us that we can’t sin against the Son of God and not pay the penalty, and shall suffer and forfeit our right to heaven. But the devil has been telling the folks for the last twenty-five years to my knowledge that the sin against the Holy Ghost was something altogether different from other sins, when right there in Luke’s Gospel in the 10th verse He shows us that if we blaspheme the Holy Ghost that we are lost, and we think that is a great mystery, but right there in the same chapter and in the 9th verse He tells us that if we deny the Son of Man before men, that He will deny us before the angels of God. One is as fatal as the other. Here are the real facts in the case: Under the dispensation of the Father, if we rejected Him until He forsook us, we were lost. And a lost man is a lost man, it makes no difference if it was five thousand years ago or last year; the sin of rejection will have the same effect on the rejecter at any age of the world or in any dispensation.
We now turn to the First Epistle of John and read 5:16: “If any man see his brother sin a sin which is not unto death he shall ask and he shall give him life for them that sin not unto death. There is a sin unto death. I do not say that ye shall pray for it.” Now reader, in the above scripture we have two classes of sin spoken of; one is the sin of wrong doing, which may be pardoned if confessed and forsaken, while the other is the sin against the Holy Ghost, which implies that the man has grieved away the Holy Spirit until He is gone. Of course if he is in such a condition as that, there is no use praying for him, for he has said “No” to the Spirit so often that the Spirit has left him and there is no hope for the fellow. John calls it the sin unto death, and of course we see at a glance that John is right.
When a man sinned against the Father until He left him, that man away back down the ages had done the same thing; he had sinned the sin unto death. But all sins are not of that character; a sin against the Lord may be forgiven, and a sin against the Holy Ghost may be forgiven, and a sin against your fellowman may be forgiven, but when any sin is persisted in until the Spirit leaves you, you are a lost man, it makes no difference as to what the sin is.
I believe a man can persist stealing cattle until God is so grieved that he is a lost man, or a man may persist in robbing trains and banks until that man is hopelessly lost, and I think that a man can persist in killing men until he is a lost man, and on the other hand I think a man might steal a cow and go to God and confess his crime, and pay the man for the cow, and go to heaven, the same as if he had committed any other crime. On the other hand a man might kill a man and go to God and find sweet peace and pardon and go to heaven shouting. But don’t you see that is not the sin of persistent sin? Any of the above sins are sins of wrong doing and will damn as sure as the blasphemy against the Holy Ghost if persisted in and not forsaken, but they may be forsaken and confessed and repented of, and the man may find peace and pardon, and go to heaven a happy man. Any form of known sin is in violation of God’s law and will damn the sinner if it is not repented of.
Now reader, we want to turn and look at a few scriptures in the Epistles of St. Paul and see just what he says about grieving the Holy Ghost. We turn first and read I Thess. 4:7, 8: “For God has not called us unto uncleanness, but unto holiness. He therefore that rejects, rejects not man, but God who has also given unto us His Holy Spirit.” In the King James version it reads that, “He that despiseth, despiseth not man, but God,” but in the Revised Version it reads, “He that rejecteth, rejecteth not man, but God.”
I quote the above to show you that a man may reject the Holy Ghost even after he is a converted man, and thousands of them have done it already. There is not a day but what some Christian rejects the blessed Holy Ghost. Today if all the churches were to receive the Holy Ghost and let Him have His way with them, there would be nothing on the face of the earth that would be in our way, but we would sweep on and out beyond anywhere that we have ever been yet. Revivals would break out all over the land and the shouts of the saints would be something wonderful. The tidal waves of glory would roll all over this land of ours, and we would do more in the next few years than we have done since the day of Pentecost.
We turn and read another verse in this Epistle from the 5th chapter and 19th verse. It is not a long verse, but it tells as much as if it were ten feet long. Notice it: “Quench not the Spirit.” Just four words, but it is a warning nevertheless, and sometimes the most awful and fearful warnings are not the longest. When the Lord says “Come,” we had better come, and when He says “Go,” we had better go, and when He says, “Whoa,” we had better whoa. A warning is a warning, and as to the length of the warning, that has nothing to do with it at all. May you and I hear the voice of God, and when He says to us, “Quench not the Spirit,” we had better not quench Him for if we do we are as hopelessly lost as if we were already in the tomb. There are plenty of men in this country whom the Lord can’t do any more with than He can a dead man. A man in the tomb is no deader to the voice and will of God than plenty of living men, and yet they don’t seem to be alarmed about their condition, and the people wonder and are amazed at it. Well, it is no mystery. A dead man never becomes alarmed; he is beyond the reach of the tender love of a loving heavenly Father. He is a dead man, and a bound man, and an entombed man, and a putrefied man, and a man in that condition doesn’t feel or desire to become acquainted with the great God who has done so much for him. It is all over with him now, for he has quenched the Holy Spirit until He has taken His everlasting flight.
We will turn to another scripture and see if we can get some more light on the subject. We now turn to Paul’s letter to the Ephesians, 4:30: “And grieve not the Holy Spirit of God whereby ye are sealed unto the day of redemption.” Here the Apostle tells us that we can grieve the Holy Spirit until we are sealed, and of course if that is true we see at a glance that a man can fix himself in such a condition that he is lost while he is still living. The Apostle gives a word of warning here to all men, both saint and sinner, and shows us in these few words that we, as sinners, may sin against the Holy Ghost until we are lost, and that the child of God may sin against the Holy Ghost until he is lost. The Holy Ghost has all to do with our salvation that is done here in this world. The office work of the Holy Ghost is to convict the sinner and lead him to the blessed Christ, and the work of the Holy Ghost is to lead the regenerated man to the Lord for the blessed experience of sanctification, and just as truly as the sinner can say “No” to the blessed Holy Ghost and pull back, the regenerated man can pull back and say “No” to the blessed Holy Ghost and keep that up until he has grieved Him forever away. Although he once was saved he is now lost and on his way to the pit of despair and the world of outer darkness.
But we will turn and see the reading of another scripture on this remarkable subject. We turn next to Acts 7:51: “Ye stiff-necked and uncircumcised in heart and ears, ye do always resist the Holy Ghost; as your fathers did so do ye.” Here now, the martyr Stephen was talking to his murderers just before they had put him to death, and he charges them and their fathers of being guilty of the same crimes, that of resisting the Holy Ghost, and he called them the stiff-necked and uncircumcised in heart and ears, and said that “Ye do always resist the Holy Ghost.” He shows that they were a set of resisters, and a set of rejecters, and he said, ye always do this thing. Now that proves to us that they had other opportunities and that they had rejected them, and that they had kept it up until he called them a set of stiff-necked resisters. They had kept it up until they were case-hardened and sin-cursed and devil-ridden and hell-bound. He said they were. uncircumcised both in heart and in ears, and that they and their fathers had all been rejecters of God and Christ and the Holy Ghost. They are the same crowd that we read about in Hosea 5:6 and in II Chron. 36:14:16, and Jer. 7:13-16, and Zech. 7:11-13, and Prov. 1:23-32, and many other scriptures that we could refer you to, but time and space will forbid it.
We can read the above scriptures and see what the Father had to contend with in His day, and then turn to the New Testament and see just what the Son of God had to contend with in His day, and now we have just read a number of scriptures to show that the Holy Ghost could be grieved, and that He could be resisted, and that He could be quenched, and that He could be blasphemed, and He could be sinned against.
Now I don’t think I could make it any plainer than I have. Just keep in your mind that under the dispensation of the Father they could sin against Him until they were lost, and then keep in your mind that under the dispensation of the Son of God they could reject Him until they were lost, and now we are under the dispensation of the Holy Ghost and we can resist Him in the same way that
they did the Father, and that He is very loving and tender, and easy to offend and to grieve, and that if we will obey Him and His blessed will that He will deal with us as tenderly as a mother will with her babe on her bosom. But if we turn Him down and grieve Him and resist Him and quench Him, and drive Him from us we are the eternal losers and damned above ground. The Lord pity us. When the blessed Holy Ghost is forever gone, how sad the man and how horrible the condition. It would have been better for that man had he never been born. See what he has missed, and see what he has lost, and see where he is to stay all through a never-ending eternity. Ho sinner! you may be drifting over the deadline tonight.
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