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Lutherans/Concerning sin against holy ghost

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Question
I have been going through a tremendous amount of stress lately. I am a LCMS Lutheran. My concern is that in the past, I have threatened to rely on good luck charms rather than God, threatening to hand my life to Satan out of frustration, and believing that I am Satan-possessed. I am VERY sorry for these sins and repent of these sins. I'm very frightened and concerned that I committed the unpardonable sin against the Holy Ghost. My own LCMS pastor won't help me with my spiritual issues. May God bless you always, David Long

Answer
David,

Thanks for your question.  I'm sorry to hear you have been facing this trouble.  

This is actually a very common question, and I recall answering it a few times previously here on allexperts.com.  You may be able to find a longer answer by searching for one of those previous answers.  

The very short answer is that the sin Jesus speaks of is persistent rejection of the Gospel - or breaking the First Commandment.  The sin of unbelief (not doubt or questioning, but rather consciously rejecting Jesus) renders all other sins unforgivable for as long as it continues to be committed, but upon trusting Jesus all sins are forgiven, even prior unbelief.  So even though this sin renders all other sins unforgiven, it only becomes permanently unforgivable upon death.  

I also wrote on this in a little greater length, addressing the particular details of Jesus' words in Matthew, for a local newspaper a few years back, and that article can be found at:

http://lutheranreformission.blogspot.com/2010/10/unforgivable-sin.html

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Rev. Jason P. Peterson

Expertise

I welcome the opportunity to answer questions regarding the beliefs and practices Lutheran Christians, especially questions comparing Lutherans with other Christian denominations or questions which contrast between various kinds of Lutherans. I am especially familiar with the more conservative Lutheran denominations (LCMS, ELS, WELS, etc.). I also take a great interest in examining new Christian movements and popular trends in Christianity from a Lutheran perspective. In addition, I can answer most questions about the original Greek text of the New Testament and its meaning, as well as questions regarding liturgy, evangelism, and preaching. A special area of interest in my ministry is race track chaplaincy/ministry, and I would love to provide information and guidance for anyone interested in this area.

Experience

I have been a pastor in the Lutheran Church--Missouri Synod for the past six years at St. John's Lutheran Church in Burt, IA. I currently serve as chairman of the Commission on Ministerial Growth & Support of the Missouri Synod's Iowa District West and as Track Chaplain at Algona Raceway in Algona, IA. I also write as a religion columnist for two local newspapers.

Organizations
Lutheran Church--Missouri Synod

Publications
Algona Upper Des Moines (newspaper) Bancroft Register (newspaper)

Education/Credentials
B.A. Concordia University - Ann Arbor, MI (Biblical Languages) M.Div. Concordia Theological Seminary, Fort Wayne, IN (Exegetical Theology, Pastoral Ministry & Missions)

Past/Present Clients
Zion Lutheran Church (Columbia City, IN) Zion Lutheran Church (Altamont, IL) St. John's Lutheran Church (Burt, IA) Zion Lutheran Church (Lu Verne, IA) Algona Raceway (IA) Fairmont Raceway (MN) Hancock County Speedway (Britt, IA) Clay County Fairgrounds Raceway (Spencer, IA)

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