Questions On Bible Phrases

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Question 1. In Matthew 12 it talks about the unforgivable sin of blasphemy against the Holy Spirit. Does this mean if in one's younger years he denounces God and claims he is an atheist, that if he has a change of heart later, he can never be forgiven. It seems this would be limiting God who can forgive anyone that asks.

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Answer I am not sure I completely understand this passage, but I will share what I believe is clear from this passage. First, it would be good to read the passage from Matthew 12:22-37.

MAT 12:22 ¶ Then there was brought to Him a demon-possessed man who was blind and dumb, and He healed him, so that the dumb man spoke and saw.
MAT 12:23 And all the multitudes were amazed, and began to say, "This man cannot be the Son of David, can he?"
MAT 12:24 But when the Pharisees heard it, they said, "This man casts out demons only by Beelzebul the ruler of the demons."
MAT 12:25 And knowing their thoughts He said to them, "Any kingdom divided against itself is laid waste; and any city or house divided against itself shall not stand.
MAT 12:26 "And if Satan casts out Satan, he is divided against himself; how then shall his kingdom stand?
MAT 12:27 "And if I by Beelzebul cast out demons, by whom do your sons cast them out? Consequently they shall be your judges.
MAT 12:28 "But if I cast out demons by the Spirit of God, then the kingdom of God has come upon you.
MAT 12:29 "Or how can anyone enter the strong man's house and carry off his property, unless he first binds the strong man? And then he will plunder his house.
MAT 12:30 "He who is not with Me is against Me; and he who does not gather with Me scatters.
MAT 12:31 "Therefore I say to you, any sin and blasphemy shall be forgiven men, but blasphemy against the Spirit shall not be forgiven.
MAT 12:32 "And whoever shall speak a word against the Son of Man, it shall be forgiven him; but whoever shall speak against the Holy Spirit, it shall not be forgiven him, either in this age, or in the age to come.
MAT 12:33 "Either make the tree good, and its fruit good; or make the tree bad, and its fruit bad; for the tree is known by its fruit.
MAT 12:34 "You brood of vipers, how can you, being evil, speak what is good? For the mouth speaks out of that which fills the heart.
MAT 12:35 "The good man out of his good treasure brings forth what is good; and the evil man out of his evil treasure brings forth what is evil.
MAT 12:36 "And I say to you, that every careless word that men shall speak, they shall render account for it in the day of judgment.
MAT 12:37 "For by your words you shall be justified, and by your words you shall be condemned."

First, we understand there is a demon-possessed man brought to Jesus and Jesus casts out the demon and the man becomes normal. The multitude is amazed by the power displayed.

However, the Pharisees are not so amazed. They seek to discredit Jesus in front of the multitude and destroy His influence. Therefore, they immediately raise accusations against Him.

The substance of their clam is is, Jesus is casting out demons by the power of Satan. In other words, He is of Satan and not of God and the power He displays is from Satan and not God. We must understand the context of what has happened and the nature of their accusation. They are directly asserting that the power that had been demonstrated before their eyes by Jesus was not from the Holy Spirit, but from Satan. Therefore, whatever evidence Jesus had offered by casting out the demon, was Satanic rather than Divine. This is their blasphemy - by rejecting the Holy Spirit's evidence, they would no t be able to turn to Jesus.

Jesus responds by asserting that it would be unreasonable to believe that Satan would fight against himself by casting out demons. And, he also challenges them to examine how their own disciples supposedly cast out demons. By what power did they cast out demons.

Then, Jesus says the words that we have the question about, whoever speaks against the Son, it shall be forgiven, but whoever speaks against the Holy Spirit, it shall not be forgiven. What does this mean?

In context, I believe it means that whoever gets to a point where they reject the observable evidence given by the Holy Spirit and attribute that to Satan will not turn to follow Jesus and therefore will not be forgiven. I believe the real question is not whether God forgives, but whether man can get himself into such a state of mind that he will not ask to be forgiven. Contact Gary

Question 2. What are the many references in the Bible to "Anointing with Oil" and what is the explanation of them.

Answer I did not realize that there are so many references to Anointing Oil!

Here they are:

Ex 25:6 Oil for the light, spices for anointing oil, and for sweet incense, Ex 29:2 And unleavened bread, and cakes unleavened tempered with oil, and wafers unleavened anointed with oil: [of] wheaten flour shalt thou make them. Ex 29:7 Then shalt thou take the anointing oil, and pour [it] upon his head, and anoint him. Ex 29:21 And thou shalt take of the blood that [is] upon the altar, and of the anointing oil, and sprinkle [it] upon Aaron, and upon his garments, and upon his sons, and upon the garments of his sons with him: and he shall be hallowed, and his garments, and his sons, and his sons' garments with him. Ex 30:25 And thou shalt make it an oil of holy ointment, an ointment compound after the art of the apothecary: it shall be an holy anointing oil. Ex 30:31 And thou shalt speak unto the children of Israel, saying, This shall be an holy anointing oil unto me throughout your generations. Ex 31:11 And the anointing oil, and sweet incense for the holy [place]: according to all that I have commanded thee shall they do. Ex 35:8 And oil for the light, and spices for anointing oil, and for the sweet incense, Ex 35:15 And the incense altar, and his staves, and the anointing oil, and the sweet incense, and the hanging for the door at the entering in of the tabernacle, Ex 35:28 And spice, and oil for the light, and for the anointing oil, and for the sweet incense. Ex 37:29 And he made the holy anointing oil, and the pure incense of sweet spices, according to the work of the apothecary. Ex 39:38 And the golden altar, and the anointing oil, and the sweet incense, and the hanging for the tabernacle door, Ex 40:9 And thou shalt take the anointing oil, and anoint the tabernacle, and all that [is] therein, and shalt hallow it, and all the vessels thereof: and it shall be holy. Le 2:4 And if thou bring an oblation of a meat offering baken in the oven, [it shall be] unleavened cakes of fine flour mingled with oil, or unleavened wafers anointed with oil. Le 7:12 If he offer it for a thanksgiving, then he shall offer with the sacrifice of thanksgiving unleavened cakes mingled with oil, and unleavened wafers anointed with oil, and cakes mingled with oil, of fine flour, fried. Le 8:2 Take Aaron and his sons with him, and the garments, and the anointing oil, and a bullock for the sin offering, and two rams, and a basket of unleavened bread; Le 8:10 And Moses took the anointing oil, and anointed the tabernacle and all that [was] therein, and sanctified them. Le 8:12 And he poured of the anointing oil upon Aaron's head, and anointed him, to sanctify him. Le 8:30 And Moses took of the anointing oil, and of the blood which [was] upon the altar, and sprinkled [it] upon Aaron, [and] upon his garments, and upon his sons, and upon his sons' garments with him; and sanctified Aaron, [and] his garments, and his sons, and his sons' garments with him. Le 10:7 And ye shall not go out from the door of the tabernacle of the congregation, lest ye die: for the anointing oil of the LORD [is] upon you. And they did according to the word of Moses. Le 21:10 And [he that is] the high priest among his brethren, upon whose head the anointing oil was poured, and that is consecrated to put on the garments, shall not uncover his head, nor rend his clothes; Le 21:12 Neither shall he go out of the sanctuary, nor profane the sanctuary of his God; for the crown of the anointing oil of his God [is] upon him: I [am] the LORD. Nu 4:16 And to the office of Eleazar the son of Aaron the priest [pertaineth] the oil for the light, and the sweet incense, and the daily meat offering, and the anointing oil, [and] the oversight of all the tabernacle, and of all that therein [is], in the sanctuary, and in the vessels thereof. Nu 6:15 And a basket of unleavened bread, cakes of fine flour mingled with oil, and wafers of unleavened bread anointed with oil, and their meat offering, and their drink offerings. Nu 35:25 And the congregation shall deliver the slayer out of the hand of the revenger of blood, and the congregation shall restore him to the city of his refuge, whither he was fled: and he shall abide in it unto the death of the high priest, which was anointed with the holy oil. De 28:40 Thou shalt have olive trees throughout all thy coasts, but thou shalt not anoint [thyself] with the oil; for thine olive shall cast [his fruit]. 1Sa 10:1 Then Samuel took a vial of oil, and poured [it] upon his head, and kissed him, and said, [Is it] not because the LORD hath anointed thee [to be] captain over his inheritance? 1Sa 16:13 Then Samuel took the horn of oil, and anointed him in the midst of his brethren: and the Spirit of the LORD came upon David from that day forward. So Samuel rose up, and went to Ramah. 2Sa 1:21 Ye mountains of Gilboa, [let there be] no dew, neither [let there be] rain, upon you, nor fields of offerings: for there the shield of the mighty is vilely cast away, the shield of Saul, [as though he had] not [been] anointed with oil. 2Sa 14:2 And Joab sent to Tekoah, and fetched thence a wise woman, and said unto her, I pray thee, feign thyself to be a mourner, and put on now mourning apparel, and anoint not thyself with oil, but be as a woman that had a long time mourned for the dead: 1Ki 1:39 And Zadok the priest took an horn of oil out of the tabernacle, and anointed Solomon. And they blew the trumpet; and all the people said, God save king Solomon. 2Ki 9:3 Then take the box of oil, and pour [it] on his head, and say, Thus saith the LORD, I have anointed thee king over Israel. Then open the door, and flee, and tarry not. 2Ki 9:6 And he arose, and went into the house; and he poured the oil on his head, and said unto him, Thus saith the LORD God of Israel, I have anointed thee king over the people of the LORD, [even] over Israel. Ps 23:5 Thou preparest a table before me in the presence of mine enemies: thou anointest my head with oil; my cup runneth over. Ps 45:7 Thou lovest righteousness, and hatest wickedness: therefore God, thy God, hath anointed thee with the oil of gladness above thy fellows Ps 89:20 I have found David my servant; with my holy oil have I anointed him: Ps 92:10 But my horn shalt thou exalt like [the horn of] an unicorn: I shall be anointed with fresh oil. Eze 16:9 Then washed I thee with water; yea, I throughly washed away thy blood from thee, and I anointed thee with oil. Mic 6:15 Thou shalt sow, but thou shalt not reap; thou shalt tread the olives, but thou shalt not anoint thee with oil; and sweet wine, but shalt not drink wine. Zec 4:14 Then said he, These [are] the two anointed ones, that stand by the Lord of the whole earth. Mr 6:13 And they cast out many devils, and anointed with oil many that were sick, and healed [them]. Lu 7:46 My head with oil thou didst not anoint: but this woman hath anointed my feet with ointment. Heb 1:9 Thou hast loved righteousness, and hated iniquity; therefore God, [even] thy God, hath anointed thee with the oil of gladness above thy fellows. Jas 5:14 Is any sick among you? let him call for the elders of the church; and let them pray over him, anointing him with oil in the name of the Lord:

>From Unger's Bible Dictionary:


    ANOINTING. Anointing the body with oil was an ancient and widespread custom common among Egyptians, Hebrews, and inhabitants of the Far East, as well as among Greeks and Romans. The purpose was, doubtless, to keep the skin supple and to moderate the evaporation that is so great in hot climates. In Scripture the usual Heb. word for anointing is mashah; the Gk. term is chrio, to "rub." See the second article Anointing (below).     Cleansing. The allusions to anointing as part of ordinary washing are numerous, both in the OT and NT <Ruth 3:3>; as expressive of joy <Ps. 23:5; Heb. 1:9>; its disuse indicative of grief <2 Sam. 14:2; Ps. 92:10; Dan. 10:3>. It was reckoned among the civilities extended to guests <Luke 7:46>, although the ointments used on such occasions seem to have been perfumes rather than oils. It was also used medicinally <Isa. 1:6; Mark 6:13; James 5:14>. See Oil.     The practice of anointing the bodies of the dead is referred to in <Mark 14:8> and <Luke 23:56>. This ceremony was performed after the washing of the body and was doubtless intended to check decay. See Embalming.     Consecration. The first instance of the religious use of oil is the anointing of the stone by Jacob <Gen. 28:18; 35:14>, evidently designed to be a formal consecration of the stone, or spot, to a sacred purpose. Under the Mosaic law persons and things set apart for sacred purposes were anointed with the "holy anointing oil" <Exo. 30:23-25,30-33>. See Priesthood, Hebrew.     Coronation. It was a custom among the Jews to anoint with oil those set apart as kings, which custom was adopted by the Christian church.     Figurative. The anointing with oil was a symbol of endowment with the Spirit of God <1 Sam. 10:1,6; 16:13; Isa. 61:1> for the duties of the office to which a person was consecrated <Lev. 8>. See King; Priest.

(from New Unger's Bible Dictionary) (originally published by Moody Press of Chicago, Illinois.  Copyright (C) 1988.)

>From Nelson's Bible dictionary:


    To authorize, or set apart, a person for a particular work or service <Is. 61:1>. The anointed person belonged to God in a special sense. The phrases, "the Lord's anointed," "God's anointed," "My anointed," "Your anointed," or "His anointed" are used of Saul <1 Sam. 26:9, 11>, David <2 Sam. 22:51>, and Solomon <2 Chr. 6:42>. In the New Testament, all who are Christ's disciples are said to be anointed; they are God's very own, set apart and commissioned for service <2 Cor. 1:21>.     Priests, kings, and prophets were anointed. Oil was poured on the head of the person being anointed <Ex. 29:7>. Kings were set apart through the ritual of anointing, which was performed by a prophet who acted in God's power and authority <1 Sam. 15:1>. The Old Testament also records two instances of the anointing of a prophet <1 Kin. 19:16; Is. 61:1>.     Jesus the Messiah is described as "anointed." This description is found in the psalms of the Old Testament which prophesy the coming of Christ and in the preaching of the apostle Peter in the Book of Acts.     In the New Testament, anointing was frequently used in connection with healing. The Holy Spirit's activities in a believer's life are pictured in terms associated with anointing. Jesus' disciples anointed the sick <Mark 6:13>, and James instructed the elders of the church to anoint the sick with oil <James 5:14>. This anointing was for the purpose of healing.     Anointing in the New Testament also refers to the anointing of the Holy Spirit, which brings understanding <1 John 2:20,27>. This anointing is not only for kings, priests, and prophets; it is for everyone who believes in the Lord Jesus Christ. The anointing occurs physically with a substance such as oil, myrrh, or balsam. But this is also a spiritual anointing, as the Holy Spirit anoints a person's heart and mind with the love and truth of God.

(from Nelson's Illustrated Bible Dictionary) (Copyright (C) 1986, Thomas Nelson Publishers)

>From the International Standard Bible Encyclopedia --

OIL, ANOINTING -- (shemen hamishchah): This holy oil, the composition of which is described in <Exo 30:22-33>, was designed for use in the anointing of the tabernacle, its furniture and vessels, the altar and laver, and the priest, that being thus consecrated, they might be "most holy." It was to be "a holy anointing oil" unto Yahweh throughout all generations (verse 31). On its uses, compare <Exo 37:29; Lev 8:12; 10:7; 21:10>. The care of this holy oil was subsequently entrusted to Eleazar <Num 4:16>; in later times it seems to have been prepared by the sons of the priests <1 Chr 9:30>. There is a figurative allusion to the oil on Aaron's head in <Ps 133:2>. See OIL; ANOINTING. -- JAMES ORR

(from International Standard Bible Encylopaedia, Electronic Database Copyright (C) 1996 by Biblesoft)

ANOINTING -- (a-noint'-ing): A distinction was made by the ancient Hebrews between anointing with oil in private use, as in making one's toilet (cukh), and anointing as a religious rite (mashach).     1. Ordinary Use: (1) As regards its secular or ordinary use, the native olive oil, alone or mixed with perfumes, was commonly used for toilet purposes, the very poor naturally reserving it for special occasions only <Ruth 3:3>. The fierce protracted heat and biting lime dust of Palestine made the oil very soothing to the skin, and it was applied freely to exposed parts of the body, especially to the face <Ps 104:15>.     (2) The practice was in vogue before David's time, and traces of it may be found throughout the Old Testament (see <Deut 28:40; Ruth 3:3; 2 Sam 12:20; 14:2; 2> Chron 28:15; <Ezek 16:9; Micah 6:15; Dan 10:3>) and in the New Testament (<Mt 6:17>, etc.). Indeed it seems to have been a part of the daily toilet throughout the East.     (3) To abstain from it was one token of mourning (<2 Sam 14:2>; compare <Mt 6:17>), and to resume it a sign that the mourning was ended (<2 Sam 12:20, 14:2; Dan 10:3>; Jth 10:3). It often accompanied the bath (<Ruth 3:3; 2 Sam 12:20; Ezek 16:9>; Sus 17), and was a customary part of the preparation for a feast <Eccl 9:8; Ps 23:5>. One way of showing honor to a guest was to anoint his head with oil <Ps 23:5; Lk 7:46>; a rarer and more striking way was to anoint his feet <Lk 7:38>. In <James 5:14>, we have an instance of anointing with oil for medicinal purposes, for which see OIL.     2. Religious Use: Anointing as a religious rite was practiced throughout the ancient East in application both to persons and to things.     (1) It was observed in Canaan long before the Hebrew conquest, and, accordingly, Weinel (Stade's Zeutschrift, XVIII, 50 ff) holds that, as the use of oil for general purposes in Israel was an agricultural custom borrowed from the Canaanites, so the anointing with sacred oil was an outgrowth from its regular use for toilet purposes. It seems more in accordance with the known facts of the case and the terms used in description to accept the view set forth by Robertson Smith (Religion of the Semites, 2nd ed., 233, 383 ff; compare Wellhausen, Reste des arabischen Heidenthums, 2nd ed., 125 ff) and to believe that the cukh or use of oil for toilet purposes, was of agricultural and secular origin, and that the use of oil for sacred purposes, mashach, was in origin nomadic and sacrificial. Robertson Smith finds the origin of the sacred anointing in the very ancient custom of smearing the sacred fat on the altar (matstsebhah), and claims, rightly it would seem, that from the first there was a distinct and consistent usage, distinguishing the two terms as above.     (2) The primary meaning of mashach in Hebrew, which is borne out by the Arabic, seems to have been "to daub" or "smear." It is used of painting a ceiling in <Jer 22:14>, of anointing a shield in <Isa 21:5>, and is, accordingly, consistently applied to sacred furniture, like the altar, in <Exo 29:36> and <Dan 9:24>, and to the sacred pillar in <Gen 31:13>: "where thou anointedst a pillar."     (3) The most significant uses of mashach, however, are found in its application, not to sacred things, but to certain sacred persons. The oldest and most sacred of these, it would seem, was the anointing of the king, by pouring oil upon his head at his coronation, a ceremony regarded as sacred from the earliest times, and observed religiously not in Israel only, but in Egypt and elsewhere (see <Judg 9:8,15; 1 Sam 9:16; 10:1; 2 Sam 19:10; 1 Kin 1:39,45; 2 Kin 9:3,6; 11:12>). Indeed such anointing appears to have been reserved exclusively for the king in the earliest times, which accounts for the fact that "the Lord's anointed" became a synonym for "king" (see <1 Sam 12:3,5; 26:11; 2 Sam 1:14; Ps 20:6>). It is thought by some that the practice originated in Egypt, and it is known to have been observed as a rite in Canaan at a very early day. Tell el-Amarna Letters 37 records the anointing of a king.     (4) Among the Hebrews it was believed not only that it effected a transference to the anointed one of something of the holiness and virtue of the deity in whose name and by whose representative the rite was performed, but also that it imparted a special endowment of the spirit of Yahweh (compare <1 Sam 16:13; Isa 61:1>). Hence the profound reverence for the king as a sacred personage, "the anointed" (Hebrew, meshiach YHWH), which passed over into our language through the Greek Christos, and appears as "Christ".     (5) In what is known today as the Priestly Code, the high priest is spoken of as "anointed" <Exo 29:7; Lev 4:3, 8:12>, and, in passages regarded by some as later additions to the Priestly Code, other priests also are thus spoken of <Exo 30:30; 40:13-15>. Elijah was told to anoint Elisha as a prophet <1 Kin 19:16>, but seems never to have done so. <1 Kin 19:16> gives us the only recorded instance of such a thing as the anointing of a prophet. <Isa 61:1> is purely metaphorical (compare Dillmann on <Lev 8:12-14> with International Critical Commentary on <Num 3:3>; see also Nowack, Lehrbuch der hebraischen Archaologie, II, 124).     LITERATURE.-- Jewish Encyclopedia, art. "Anointing"; BJ, IV, ix, 10, Smith, Dictionary of the Bible, art. "Anointing," etc. -- GEORGE B. EAGER

(from International Standard Bible Encylopaedia, Electronic Database Copyright (C) 1996 by Biblesoft)

OIL -- (oil) (shemen; elaion):     -------------------     .. 1. Terms     .. 2. Production and Storage [deleted]     .. 3. Uses [deleted]     ...... (1) As a Commodity of Exchange [deleted]     ...... (2) As a Cosmetic [deleted]     ...... (3) As a Medicine [deleted]     ...... (4) As a Food [deleted]     ...... (5) As an Illuminant [deleted]     ...... (6) In Religious Rites     ........... (a) Consecration     ........... (b) Offerings     ........... (c) Burials     .. 4. Figurative Uses [deleted]     -------------------     Shemen, literally, "fat," corresponds to the common Arabic senin of similar meaning, although now applied to boiled butter fat.     1. Terms: Another Hebrew word, zayith (zeth), "olive," occurs with shemen in several passages <Exo 27:20; 30:24; Lev 24:2>. The corresponding Arabic zeit, a contraction of zeitun, which is the name for the olive tree as well as the fruit, is now applied to oils in general, to distinguish them from solid fats. Zeit usually means olive oil, unless some qualifying name indicates another oil. A corresponding use was made of shemen, and the oil referred to so many times in the Bible was olive oil (except <Esth 2:12>). Compare this with the Greek elaion, "oil," a neuter noun from elaia, "olive," the origin of the English word "oil." yitshar, literally, "glistening," which occurs less frequently, is used possibly because of the light-giving quality of olive oil, or it may have been used to indicate fresh oil, as the clean, newly pressed oil is bright. meshach, a Chaldaic word, occurs twice: <Ezra 6:9; 7:22>. elaion, is the New Testament term.

... [deleted]

    (6) In religious rites.-- (a) Consecration of officials or sacred things (<Gen 28:18; 35:14; Exo 29:7,21> ff; <Lev 2:1> ff; <Num 4:9> ff; <1 Sam 10:1; 16:1,13; 2 Sam 1:21; 1 Kin 1:39; 2 Kin 9:1,3,6; Ps 89:20>): This was adopted by the early Christians in their ceremonies <James 5:14>, and is still used in the consecration of crowned rulers and church dignitaries. (b) Offerings, votive and otherwise: The custom of making offerings of oil to holy places still survives in oriental religions. One may see burning before the shrines along a Syrian roadside or in the churches, small lamps whose supply of oil is kept renewed by pious adherents. In Israelitish times oil was used in the meal offering, in the consecration offerings, offerings of purification from leprosy, etc. (<Exo 29:2; 40:9> ff; <Lev 2:2> ff; <Num 4:9> ff; <Deut 18:4; 1 Chr 9:29; 2 Chr 31:5; Neh 10:37,39; 13:5,12; Ezek 16:18-19; 45; 46; Micah 6:7>). (c) In connection with the burial of the dead: Egyptian papyri mention this use. In the Old Testament no direct mention is made of the custom. Jesus referred to it in connection with His own burial <Mt 26:12; Mk 14:3-8; Lk 23:56; Jn 12:3-8; 19:40>.

... [deleted]


(from International Standard Bible Encylopaedia, Electronic Database Copyright (C) 1996 by Biblesoft)   Contact David

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"Scripture taken from the NEW AMERICAN STANDARD BIBLE®,
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"Scripture taken from the NEW AMERICAN STANDARD BIBLE®,
© Copyright The Lockman Foundation 1960, 1962, 1963, 1968, 1971,
  1972, 1973, 1975, 1977, 1995. Used by permission."

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