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Billy Barbee wrote:

Hi, guys —

I'm a Seventh-day Adventist who is seriously seeking answers.

  • What is blaspheming against the Holy Spirit that cannot be forgiven in this life or in the next life?

Please explain this for me. I'm afraid that I committed this sin. I love my Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.

Please help me.

Love,

Billy Barbee

  { Can you explain to a SDA what blaspheming against the Holy Spirit is and help me with this sin? }

Bob replied:

Billy,

Put away your fear. If you had sinned against the Holy Spirit you would not love the Lord and be sorry for your sins. The sin that Jesus refers to is a rejection of God and a refusal to yield to His Spirit in a permanent way. It is lack of repentance and rebellion against God.

One of the Holy Spirit's job is to convict the world of sin. The Spirit does this within one's conscience. The Spirit coaxes us to turn to the Lord for forgiveness and reconciliation.

  • A willing heart turns from sin and accepts forgiveness and the Lord's grace.
  • An unwilling heart refuses to acknowledge sin or guilt and will not turn to the Lord for forgiveness and reconciliation.

If you die in this condition, it is permanent, hence the will not be forgiven saying of Jesus. As long as a person is alive, they have the possibility of turning from sin, even if they fall over and over again through their lifetime. Forgiveness and reconciliation is always offered. There is simply no sin that God won't forgive — even if you cursed God in anger or did something that seemed to attack Him. He is used to that.

Think of it like this:

  • Have you ever been angry with someone you loved and lashed out at them?
  • If they loved you, did they forgive you?

If so, imagine how much more God loves you and how ready He is to forgive you. Just remember what Jesus said on the Cross:

"Father, forgive them . . ." (Luke 23:34)

even after He had been brutally attacked and mortally tortured.

Whenever we sin, the Spirit moves in us to turn us back and as long as He eventually gets through to us, which sometimes takes quite a bit of prodding, we are forgiven. Keep in mind, that the little sins are not problematic to our salvation — it is the deadly sins (See 1 John 5:16-17) that separate us from God. But even in those circumstances, He reaches out to us.

Read Romans 5:10 to remind yourself of this gracious offering of God to us, even when we are rebellious little #$@%*!

Please keep seeking the truth and answers. The Catholic faith has been despised by most Seventh Day Adventists so it is a blessing to us that you are here looking for truth. You will find it in the Catholic faith.

God be with you and bring you peace.

Bob Kirby

Billy replied:

Thank you for your answer, Mr. Kirby.

God Bless You.

This answer is God sent.

  • Do you have suggestions for overcoming my sexual sins?

I've been bound to them all my life. I'm taking Setting Captives Free on the internet.

Tell me straight up what I must do. It's a difficult sin for me to stop.

Love,

Billy Barbee

Bob replied:

Billy,

That course will be a good start. Here are some other pointers. If you are addicted to pornography you will have to break your access to it. There are some browsers from Christian organizations (I wish I had a link to send you) that block access to pornography while letting other ordinary internet activity continue. Likewise, if you have TV, block all access to programming that is adult-rated or at whatever viewing level that triggers you and give any parental code to someone else that you trust who can help you by being an accountability partner. If it doesn't work, consider getting rid of your TV.

The goal is to avoid the triggers that turn on your sexual impulses, especially since you have a low resistance right now. Get rid of all access to media that does that.

Second, if your addiction goes to using others, consider a program like (SLAA) Sex and Love Addicts Anonymous, which is a 12-step program like (AA) Alcoholics Anonymous for people with sex and love addictions. Support from others who have broken free can help, much in the same way that AA helps people get sober from alcohol. Get a sponsor and have someone to keep you accountable.

Pray. A great Catholic theologian which we reference all the time, Scott Hahn, witnessed how he was addicted to pornography while he was still a Protestant and was investigating the Catholic Church. He was depressed because he tried many ways but couldn't get anywhere. Finally, he knew about the Rosary, which to him, as a Protestant was taboo, because of Mary and Catholics praying to saints, etc., but he had learned enough about our faith to know we only ask Mary to pray for us. (She is not God and can only be a powerful prayer partner.) Catholics believe that the dead in Christ aren't really dead, but are brother and sister Christians that are with the Lord pulling for us from the other side. James says, the prayers of a righteous man availeth much (James 5:16), so we try to get the best prayers onboard when tackling tough sins and problems.

It wasn't that long before Scott realized he hadn't indulged in his sin and had lost the urge. He was becoming healed. Eventually, he was fully freed and it was one of the most powerful experiences in his investigation of the Catholic faith that brought him to accept and become a member in our Church. He is now one of the greatest teachers we have. Read any of his books and you will be amazed.

Catholics often learn more from Protestants or former Protestants than Catholics — that's how the Lord works. We are one family and it is sad that we are divided in our creeds and our worship.

Lastly, be gentle with yourself. Your last e-mail showed you have pain in your life and need healing. God loves you and will get you through this. Chances are this addiction comes from unresolved pain in your life. Healing will come with time, slowly and step by step. It will be easier as you learn to avoid triggers and the resulting temptations.

God bless you and keep close to the Lord. He loves to see you striving toward Him.

Bob Kirby

Mike replied:

Hi Billy,

You said:

  • Do you have suggestions for overcoming my sexual sins?

I've been bound to them all my life. I'm taking Setting Captives Free on the internet.

Tell me straight up what I must do. It's a difficult sin for me to stop.

I just wanted to make sure you were aware of our FAQ page. Both Eric and I share advice on dealing with sexual issues under:

Lust, sins of the flesh, concupiscence and similar issues related to illnesses

Mike

Billy replied:

Hi, guys —

I just wanted to say thank you again, especially to Bob. As I've said, I'm SDA and I love my Catholic brothers and sisters. In the past, I was interested in watching the Journey Home and Truth in the Heart on EWTN. Some of my teachers at (ICL) Institute of Children's Literature have been Catholic.

The Creed's of the (SDA) Seventh Day Adventist and Catholic faiths are extremely different.
I wanted to hear from both sides about the blasphemy against the Spirit. I'm going to join a purity group next month when I get a car.

Thank you for answering my questions on my sexual sins. These sins really keep me from feeling close to the Lord.

God Bless Again. Your answers are God sent.

Billy Barbee

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