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Question: What exactly is Blasphemy?
Answer: First, let's take a look at the primary scriptures that discusses this subject: "And so I tell you, every sin and blasphemy will be forgiven men, but the blasphemy against the Spirit will not be forgiven. Anyone who speaks a word against the Son of Man will be forgiven, but anyone who speaks against the Holy Spirit will not be forgiven, either in this age or in the age to come." (Matthew 12:31-32, NIV)
The English word comes from the Greek word blasphëmia (Strong's Concordance #G988). A Greek dictionary defines the word as "vilification, evil speaking, railing." Webster's definition of adds "the act of insulting or showing contempt or lack of reverence for God," and "the act of claiming the attributes of deity." The word profane, a synonym, is defined as treating something sacred with abuse, irreverence or contempt.
The above definitions show that when one blasphemes it is not something done by accident. To blaspheme, one must have knowledge of the person, object or idea that is being spoken against. Blasphemy was the initial charge against Jesus that condemned him to die (Matthew 26:63-66).
The Bible makes a distinction between what it means to blaspheme the Son of Man (Jesus) versus the Holy Spirit. This, however, begs the question as to why there is a distinction. Why would sins against Jesus be forgiven but not those against the Holy Spirit? Does this mean that God's Holy Spirit, given upon repentance and baptism, is somehow GREATER than the Savior of mankind who made possible its giving in the first place?
People, out of their lack of full knowledge and understanding, may wrongly blaspheme Jesus and still be forgiven. For example, many people living at the time of Jesus - who saw his miracles and heard him speak - concluded that he was from God. But they also blasphemed because they denied and rejected He was the SON of God and the Messiah. Yet, because of their ignorance and the fact that they were not called of God, this sin (upon repentance) will be forgiven.