Sin that cannot be forgiven?


#1

Hello, folks, Acts 8:22 makes it sound like there are sins that can’t be forgiven.

Please don’t quote other Bible verses saying otherwise. Just deal with this verse and its context. Maybe the Bible is contradictory or we are misunderstanding those other verses.

Here is the verse, Peter talking to Simon the Magician.
“Repent, therefore, of this wickedness of yours, and pray to the Lord that, if possible, the intent of your heart may be forgiven you” (italics added).

Peter implies that it may NOT be possible to forgive Simon of his sin.

So, is there sometimes a point at which we cannot be forgiven?


#2

Contrition is required for forgiveness. A prayer in of itself might not forgive a person.


#3

I think you are placing too much emphasis on the “if possible” in the verse. All things are possible with God.

Walking up to God and demanding to be forgiven would be rather prideful and insincere - you don’t necessarily have the right to God’s forgiveness but when you are sorry for your sin and want to repair your relationship with God He is quick to forgive the offense.

Peter is talking to a sinner. Peter is telling the sinner to “throw themselves on the mercy of God” - and cautioning against any arrogance/pride in doing so. Similar to saying “not my will, but your will be done.”


#4

“…if possible” could also mean, “if it is possible for you to pray and repent.” Try reading with a different inflection / tone of that phrase.

Which Bible version are you using?

Anyone know the text in its original language to weigh in?


#5

Taking a single verse or passage is isolation is often dangerous, but - even doing so in this case for the sake of argument - there is nothing to indicate that the possible impossibility of forgiveness (which is definitely not explicitly stated) depends on either the sin or on God. It could easily depend on the internal disposition of the sinner.

Note that he says “that the intent of your heart may be forgiven you.” This seems to imply that the person not only did something bad on a whim without thinking or similar, but had actual evil intent. In order to recieve forgiveness, one must be contrite, which means (with God’s grace) we must turn away from the evil intent of our heart at least enough to recognize that what we did was bad and needs to be forgiven to avoid Hell (for serious sin) and that we should try not to do it again (altogether called imperfect contrition).

Contrition allows us to accept God’s forgiveness. While not contrite, you could say that forgiveness is not possible. Which could account for the phrase in this passage - forgiveness may not be possible if the sinner has not become contrite and repented the intent of his heart. Of course, while it may or may not be possible because of contrition at this particular moment, even if the person is not contrite he may become so later, and so the impossibility could refer to a specific moment in time, and not be an absolute impossibility, as it were.


#6

The only sin that cannot be forgiven is Final Impenitence- (blasphemy against the Holy Spirit.). It is unforgivable because it is the soul’s last and only chance to turn to God’s mercy before death.


#7

So, this is a sin that can ONLY be committed when one is on their death bed?


#8

Please understand that this is not how Catholics read the Bible. We don’t take individual verses and interpret them by themselves. This is not what we do.

Asking someone to explain one verse of the Bible by itself is like asking someone to explain one sentence from Gone with the Wind by itself without having read or being able to reference the rest of the book.

Besides, other translations say perhaps instead of if possible.

-Tim-


#9

It simply means if you die in a state of mortal sin that means you have not repented prior to death and so you are not forgiven and you go immediately to Hell.


#10

I just love when people come on this forum and suggest that Catholics follow unsound interpretive techniques and follow a dime a dozen protestant approach that gives us a rule of interpreting a passage without putting it into context with what the rest of Scripture, or go a step further and suggest that we say that the Bible is contradictory! To a traditionalist like myself that is blasphemous! Catholics should follow Catholic school of thought.


#11

Well, it doesn’t become final impenitence until one’s last moment, but it’s not a single one-time act. It would be more correct to say that impenitence is an ongoing state that you can stop committing at any time until you die.

Of course, no outside observer can tell the difference between a finally impenitent person and one who has repented silently in heart and mind at the end. So we can believe and state that dying in unrepented mortal sin sends you to Hell, but we cannot say that Bob is in Hell, even if Bob publicly committed terrible acts and gave no outward sign of turning from them before death.

The important thing is that there is no “unforgivable sin” that one can commit once and then go on living for many years with no hope of forgiveness from God no matter how much one’s attitude changes.

Usagi


#12

It comes from when people who call good evil - they can never come to God because they believe him to be evil - and they can never come to the the truth believing this - it completely shuts them out from God.

Claiming the holy spirit is evil separates you completely from God.

I have hears many people claim God is evil and they will never come to the truth because they will never seek God believing this.

So I have repeated my self 3 times - sorry.


#13

=edarlitrix;11843292]Hello, folks, Acts 8:22 makes it sound like there are sins that can’t be forgiven.

Please don’t quote other Bible verses saying otherwise. Just deal with this verse and its context. Maybe the Bible is contradictory or we are misunderstanding those other verses.

Here is the verse, Peter talking to Simon the Magician.
“Repent, therefore, of this wickedness of yours, and pray to the Lord that, if possible, the intent of your heart may be forgiven you” (italics added).

Peter implies that it may NOT be possible to forgive Simon of his sin.

So, is there sometimes a point at which we cannot be forgiven?

Actually my friend, there is BUT one “unforgivable” sin and it TOO CAN BE forgiven [conditionally].

The One unforgivable sin is DENIAL of God!

But if one repeants and Converts that sin too is forgiveable:thumbsup:

God Bless you, and thanks for asking,
Patrick


#14

Paul seems to have a different interpretation of what that sin is.

Flee fornication. Every sin that a man doeth is without the body; but he that committeth fornication sinneth against his own body. What? know ye not that your body is the temple of the Holy Ghost which is in you, which ye have of God, and ye are not your own?

  • 1 Corinthians 6:18-19

This verse has strong parallels to how Jesus described the sin in Matthew:

Wherefore I say unto you, All manner of sin and blasphemy shall be forgiven unto men: but the blasphemy against the Holy Ghost shall not be forgiven unto men.

  • Matthew 12:31

Like Jesus, separating sin against the Holy Spirit from every other possible sin, Paul takes fornication and separates it from every other possible sin, proclaiming it to be the worst, precisely because it defiles the temple of the Holy Spirit.


#15

=White_Tree;11863296]Paul seems to have a different interpretation of what that sin is.

This verse has strong parallels to how Jesus described the sin in Matthew:

Like Jesus, separating sin against the Holy Spirit from every other possible sin, Paul takes fornication and separates it from every other possible sin, proclaiming it to be the worst, precisely because it defiles the temple of the Holy Spirit.

Interestering post. Thank you! However sins of the flesh are even MORE common than denial of God. Sins of the flesh are understood to be forgivable; denying God; not so much:shrug:

God Bless you,
Patrick


#16

:thumbsup:


#17

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