In our last installment, we learned what the unpardonable sin is. Now we are going to learn how to avoid it, and whether or not we have committed it. Spoiler alert: we haven’t.
Doug starts telling us about Biblical people who committed the unpardonable sin of rejecting the Holy Spirit (HS).
This is why God had to send the flood.
2. Pharaoh. This is why God killed the firstborns.
But if our hearts, like Pharaoh’s, are hardened*, if we see evidence of God’s work in our lives but consistently and repeatedly stifle the conviction that evidence brings, it’s not likely that we are going to repent or confess of anything. How could we?
I’m going to argue that “the evidence of God’s work in our lives” is a heck of a lot more subjective than Doug thinks, but let that pass.
Blasphemy against the holy spirit is rejecting and refusing to respond to the leading, teaching, and conviction of the Holy Spirit. It is closing the only door through which we can receive forgiveness. That is why this sin is unforgivable. **
Now that we know that this unpardonable sin is, we need to make sure we don’t commit it. I think that is obvious by the definition given above, but apparently we’re going to spend the next 58% of the book talking about how to make sure we repent when we need to.
Which, um, OK? I mean, this isn’t that hard. When one is a Christian, one is constantly finding things to repent of and feel guilty about. And if we don’t have anything to repent of and feel guilty about, then we need to repent of and feel guilty about the fact that we can’t seem to find anything to repent of and feel guilty about.
This, by the way, is the number one reason people go up for altar calls.
Ways we commit the unpardonable sin
1. A person says, “I do not want to be saved. I don’t want to be bothered with god and the bible.”
Doug says it’s not often that you find a person like this. They’re a rare species. Most people want to be saved. ***
2. A person may want to be saved, but is waiting for the right moment. The right moment never comes, and eventually the person is paralyzed by indecision.
Has this ever been anyone’s experience? I feel like this is a suspiciously straw man sounding argument.
3. This group of people are those who go to church every week, but are Christians in name only. They’ve been baptized, but they think that that’s the end of their spiritual journey rather than the beginning. This is the largest group of people who have committed/are in the process of committing the unpardonable sin.
So, about 98.5% of church members, then.
A person can get so used to committing a certain sin that they no longer feel guilty about it at all. This is the person rejecting the Holy Spirit’s pleadings to feel guilty and therefore repent.
Yes, in case anyone was wondering, the words “Holy Spirit” and “Conscience” are mostly synonyms on Planet Adventist.
Have I committed the unpardonable sin?
No. No you have not committed the unpardonable sin. We know this because you are reading this book.
See, people who have committed the unpardonable sin don’t care that they’ve committed the unpardonable sin. They also don’t read the Bible or books like Doug Batchelor’s or look at Amazing Facts study materials.
We can’t have a book like this without ending it with an appeal. If you, gentle reader(He didn’t say “gentle reader” I added that) recognize in yourself that you are pushing away the Holy Spirit, don’t delay, get right with God today!
You may think the wicked are content, but they’re really not. They only seem that way because, in some small way, they are still listening to the voice of the Holy Spirit.
The unpardonable sin may seem like it is a relief, because your conscience shuts up. But really, this is a terrible sign. These people are like turkeys being fattened up for thanksgiving. They think they live the good life, but they are doomed. Doomed. Dooooooooomed!
Take a drink, because I just threw the book across the room. This book is so insidious. Now, not only does one have to worry about feeling guilty for stupid shit, one has to worry and feel guilty about not worrying or not feeling guilty about stupid shit. What a mind fuck.
The last line of the book is “If you hear the HS calling out to you, do not harden your hearts, for if you do, by this time tomorrow you could have crossed over the point of no return.
Fear mongering much?
This is the end of the book. Well, not really, there’s about 20 more pages, but it’s basically a bible study outline Of the information we’ve just read. There’s no new stuff there, So, were not going to go over that.
My take on this book is that, while it’s trying to be reassuring, it also is very fear mongering. It’s reassuring you that you are not beyond repair, but it is also telling you that you must beware, because you may already be heading down the road toward the point of no return.
If any Christians are reading this, my advice to you is not worry about any of that. Live a good life. Follow the Golden rule. Do all of the good things Jesus said to do and chuck the rest. Pray, read your bible, and develop a relationship with your silent invisible being if you so desire. Do all you can to make the world a better place, to make people’s lives better. Any God who wouldn’t let you into heaven after all that is not a god you want to be worshiping.
This has been Adventist Book Club With Abby. Tune in next time, for…. I don’t know, I didn’t plan that far in advance.
* It was GOD who hardened his heart, Doug, not Pharaoh
**At this point, however, my cat thinks it is unforgivable that I am typing on the computer instead of petting her.
*** It’s not clear here whether this refers to people who believe in God but just don’t care, or if this refers to actual atheists. Of course, Doug probably doesn’t believe there’s a difference between the two, so maybe I should spend too much time analyzing it.