Understanding The Bible
STUDY REFERENCE
Clarence E. Mason's "MATTHEW"
EXPOSITORY ANALYSIS:
II. The Kingdom REJECTED  11:2-12:45
(and Israel DISQUALIFIED)

 

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BY THE AUTHOR
Dr. Clarence E. Mason, Jr.
Philadelphia College of Bible
1971

  1. THE KINGDOM REJECTED 11:2-12:45 (and Israel DISQUALIFIED)
    
      
    1. The occasion: the comforting of John the Baptist and the condemnation of John's enemies 11:2-19
    2. The King rejects Israel because rejected by Israel 11:20-12:45
      1. Sinning against light 11:20-24 (Words of Woe!)
      2. An enlightening prayer 11:25-27
        "Father, I thank Thee"--in a heartbreaking hour!
      3. The new invitation (to individuals within the rejected nation) 11:28-30 (See Addendum III.)
      4. Controversy with the King 12:1-45
        1. The Sabbath controversy 12:1-21
          1. The King is "Lord even of the Sabbath" 1-14
          2. The King withdraws to the "Gentiles" 15-21
        2. b. The angered Pharisees, representing the nation, commit "the_ Unpardonable Sin" 12:22-45
          1. The occasion: healing of a demon-possessed man 22-23
          2. The blasphemy: attributing to Satan the work of the Holy Spirit 24
          3. The condemnation: words of a nation's destiny 25-45
            (a)   The folly of the Pharisees' reasoning 25-29
            (b)   The seriousness of their charge 30-37
            (See special note below on "The Unpardonable Sin.")
            (c)   The conclusive sign to the nation (Jonah) 38-42 This was a sign of His death and resurrection.
            (d)   The sad, age-long result of Israel's blasphemy 43-45
            Israel, having swept his house clean of the evil spirit of idolatry (upon return from Babylon under Ezra, etc.) is now in a "worse state, " through opening his heart to the evil spirits of blasphemy, insincerity, unbelief, formalism, pride, etc.

NOTE ON "THE UNPARDONABLE SIN" (vv.31-32)
"Whosoever speaketh blasphemy against the Holy Spirit it shall not be forgiven him This is called "The Unpardonable Sin. " It is not merely a rejection of Christ, or continued rejection of Him. There is not a line of Scripture to indicate that, in this Church Age, if a persistent rejector of Christ should repent. God would not save him. Hence, persistent rejection of Jesus Christ is not an unpardonable sin if that sin should become an unpardoned sin due to a rejector dying in that state, and there remaining no further opportunity of salvation (Heb. 9:27). God was willing, but the rejector wasn't.

This scene here is something very different. First, it is not sin against Christ, but against the Holy Spirit. Second, it is a deliberate perversion of known truth into a lie. (In this case, the mighty works of Christ were known to have done by the power of the Holy Spirit. But they affirmed that Satan did them.) This is not mere unbelief but vicious apostasy with its corresponding judgment of judicial blinding from God (2 Thes. 2:11-12; Mt. 13:11-16). This judgment was of such great severity, for the greatest light was available. God manifest in the flesh was present on earth among them.

This sin was committed by these blaspheming religious leaders who later persuaded the people to demand Christ's crucifixion (27:20; Lk. 23:23). Our Lord says that neither in that age (not "world")--the age of Law in which the sin was committed--nor "in the age to come" (i.e., in the future ages, tills Church Age or any to come), could this sin be forgiven these blasphemers as individuals. They were eternally doomed.

As result of the tragic decision of Israel's leaders, the nation followed their counsel and crucified their Messiah, resulting in the nation being set aside through disobedience. But the blindness is only "in part, "not upon all Jews (Rom. 11:25). Hence, those individuals who had not committed "The Unpardonable Sin" were then and later eligible to repent and repudiate the sin of the nation's officials, and believe the claims of Christ for their own salvation (11:28-30; 13:16; Acts 2:36-40; 3:17-26; 4:4).

 

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