What is Unforgivable Sin?
by Theologian, Father William G. Most
"Have I already gone Too-far in Sin? Am I Close-to the Unforgivable Sin?", some Today
are wondering. They have Read in the Gospel that there is a
Sin that will never be Forgiven, either in this World or in the Next.
After the Enemies of Jesus had Charged that
He was really Casting-out Devils by the
Power of the Devil, then
He uttered some Mysterious and
Frightening Words, from the Inaugural Vision in which
God Appointed Isaiah as a Prophet: "The Eyes of this People are Blind. They have Eyes and See
not, Ears and Hear not, so that they might Repent and I would Heal them" (Versions vary in each Synoptic).
So, is there Really a Sin that God will
not Forgive? On His
Part, No!, there is no Such Thing. But on the Side of the Sinner,
there Definitely is, and many Today are getting into it. The Father has Accepted the
Infinite (∞) Price of
Redemption. In doing that, He has Literally
Bound Himself to Offer
Forgiveness and Grace without Limit. Further, it is not just our Race-as-a-Whole
that has such a Claim going for it each Individual Human has it. Saint Paul in Galatians 2:20 wrote that the
Son of God "Loved me, and gave Himself for me". But is that perhaps a
Special Favor shown to Paul, a Great Saint? No!, Vatican II, in its Constitution on the
Church in the Modern World #22 assures us: "Each one of us can say with the Apostle: The Son of God Loved me, and gave Himself for
me". Suffering and Death
in so Hideous a Form He was and is
Willing to Suffer for me,
for just One (1) Soul!
But as we said, even though the Father is never
Unwilling to Forgive, yet when we look at the Human Beings Themselves, Yes!,
they can be and are; they are Unforgivable.
They have become Hard, or Blinded.
But what does that mean? Those Words are Metaphorical. But they contain a
Terrible Reality. However, if we think a bit we can solve the Puzzle. Let us Picture a Man who has never been
Drunk before, but Tonight he goes out and Hangs-on a
Big-one. The Next Morning, along with other things, he will have
Guilt Feelings there is a Clash in him, of his
Moral Beliefs with his Actions. Our Nature
hates to have these Clashes, and so something has to give, and it will. If he continues
getting Drunk, he gradually moves-out on a
Bad Spiral in which he no longer can see that
Drunkenness is Wrong: "A guy has to have shum
fun"! We called it a Spiral; as It
goes out It gets Larger-and-Larger, and Feeds on
Itself. All Moral Truths are Interconnected, and so in Time, he will
Lose his Ability to See other Moral Truths.
He may even go so far as to no longer See great Doctrinal Truths.
Now, when God sends a Grace to us, to Lead us
and to Enable us to do something Good, the First Job
for the Grace is to Cause the Man to See in his Mind
that the Thing is Good. But, if he is far-out on the Bad
Spiral, he will have Lost the Ability to See that; then
Grace will indeed Come, but It will not Get-in at all.
It is like the Water off the Duck's Back. He is Blind,
he is Hardened.
Is there any Hope at all for such a One? Not in the Ordinary-course of things; a
Grace Comparable-to a Miracle is needed. It
is only if some Other Person, in Immense or Heroic Generosity will
Sacrifice and Pray for him, putting as-it-were, a
Heroic Weight into the Pan of the Two-Pan Scales of the Order of Holiness.
Only then will such Heroism Call-for and Make-right a Miraculous
Grace, One that goes beyond the Normal Order; then
God will Happily find that there is something calling for even
Miraculous Graces, Graces that can
Cut Through Resistance without
Destroying Freedom, or can even Forestall
So Our Lady at Fatima begged: Pray
and make Sacrifices for Sinners; there are
many who are Lost because there is no one to
Sacrifice Greatly for Them. For example; Augustine was a
Veteran Sinner, long-sunk in the Sticky Filth
of Habitual, Continued Sin. But his mother, Saint Monica, was Willing to
go to Heroic Lengths in Prayer and
Penance. And so Augustine Today is a
Saint; without her, he would now be in Hell.
Those who Attempt a Second Marriage, while the
First still-stands and is Valid, may tell themselves: Let us keep the Phone Number of the
Priest handy. Then if one of us is in Danger of
Death, we will call him. Yet, but is there any Real Contrition, i.e., a
Real Change of Heart? It is all Preplanned. They have continued
Sinning as long as they still had the Strength to Sin;
only when Life begins to Fail, so they cannot go-on
Sinning, will they say: I wish I had not done it. We wonder, is there any
Real Repentance? We may doubt it. We do not mean to tell such Persons to
Despair, the Fear of Death may Cause them to finally See, or
the Heroic Prayers and Penances of someone
else. But it is a Hellish Risk to Stake one's Eternity
on that Possibility.
A more Pleasant Thought; there is a Good Spiral, in the Right Direction too. If someone
Really Lives what the Faith calls for, Gives-up the Things
of the World more-and-more, then his Ability to See Supernatural Truth
Grows more-and-more. There are cases known such as St Joseph of Cupertino in which a not very Bright and Uneducated Person
may understand more-of the Ways of God, of Theology, than Highly Trained Theologians.
To come back to that Line of the Gospel, So that Seeing they
may not See
Did Our Lord really want to
Blind them? Of course not! He even Wept
over the Hardness of Jerusalem, which He
saw was going to bring such a Ruin upon Itself.
There is another way to help to understand. St John in his First Epistle (4.8) wrote: "God is
Love". He did not say that God has
Love, but that God
IS Love. That was the only Correct Way to write. If he had said
God has Love, there would be
a Duality - God and
His Love. But God is Supreme
Unity. So He is Identified with His
Love. And there is more: He is also Identified with
Mercy, with Goodness, with
Justice there are no Real Distinctions in God. So
Mercy and Justice are Identified with
His Being, and so, with each other! But how?
With the help of this start, we can begin to understand the How. We go back to look at the
Bad Spiral; the Man is becoming more-and-more Blind;
he has earned that by his Sinning; it is Justice ..
But it is also Mercy, for the more a person Knows and Understands of
God, the greater his Sin, if he does
Sin .. At the Beginning of the Process, if he Foresees what may happen, he can and will take on the
Guilt of all that he does later in Blindness.
Think of a Man sitting down to have a few drinks; he comes to a point where he sees; "If I take two more,
I will go out of my head, and heavens knows what I may do, running wild"! At the later time when he is under the Influence
of Alcohol, he may be Incapable of Sinning much at the moment. But when he embarked on that
Course, he Foresaw, at least to some extent. He then took on the Frightening Responsibility
of Running Wild and Killing or
Therefore, in One and the Same Action, God's Dealing with him is both
Mercy and Justice at the Same-time. So we can begin to see how
Mercy and Justice are Identified in
But in the Good Spiral, the Man who Moves-Far on
It, gains more-and-more Light. In one sense, he has Earned
It, but only Secondarily; for no Creature
by its own Power can Establish a Claim on God. So it is
Mercy that he Gains Light. Therefore his
Great Light is both a Gift of God, and something,
Secondarily Earned-in Justice. Again, One and the Same Act of
God is both Mercy and
Pope John Paul II
Unforgiveable Sin -
Blasphemy against the Holy Spirit
A woman was Dying of AIDS.
"I've ruined my life," she said to a Priest.
"I've ruined the lives of those around me. I've embarrassed my family.
Now I'm going to die and go to Hell".
The Priest noticed a picture of a young woman on her bedside table.
"Who is that"? he asked. Her eyes lighted up, and she replied,
"That's my daughter. She's the one thing I did right in my life. She's the one part
of my life that's good".
The Priest then asked the Dying woman,
"If your daughter made a mistake, if she did something you wish she had not done,
would you reject her? Would you condemn her"?
The woman replied, "Oh, no. I love my daughter; I'd do anything for her;
I would never reject her".
The Priest responded, "Well, God has a picture of you just like that on
His bedside table"!