“And as he was yet a coming, the devil threw him down, and tare him. And Jesus rebuked the unclean spirit, and healed the child, and delivered him again to his father.” Luke 9:42
Suggested Further Reading: 1 John 5:13-21
“There is a sin unto death; I do not say that he shall pray for it.” “There,” says the devil, “the apostle did not say he could even pray for the man who has committed certain sins.” Then he reads that “sin against the Holy Ghost shall never be forgiven.” “There,” he says, “is your character: you have committed sin against the Holy Ghost, and you will never be pardoned.” Then he brings another passage: “Let him alone; Ephraim is joined unto idols.” “There,” says Satan, “you have had no liberty in prayer lately; God has let you alone; you are given unto idols; you are entirely destroyed;” and the cruel fiend howls his song of joy, and makes a merry dance over the thought that the poor soul is to be lost. But do not believe him, my dear friends. No man has committed the sin against the Holy Ghost as long as he has grace to repent; it is certain that no man can have committed that sin if he flies to Christ and believes on him. No believing soul can commit it; no penitent sinner ever has committed it. If a man be careless and thoughtless—if he can hear a terrible sermon and laugh it off, and put away his convictions—if he never feels any strivings of conscience, there is a fear that he may have committed that sin. But as long as you have any desires for Christ, you have no more committed that sin than you have flown up to the stars and swept cobwebs from the skies. As long as you have any sense of your guilt, any desire to be redeemed, you cannot have fallen into that sin; as a penitent you may still be saved, for if you had committed it, you could not be penitent.
Sermon no. 100
24 August (1856)