Feb 09 – It’s Unforgiveable

In his book De unico Baptismo  Augustine says that a man who

Fr. John Heaton
Fr. John Heaton

spurns the truth, is either envious of his brethren to whom the truth is revealed, or ungrateful to God, by whose inspiration the Church is taught, and therefore, sins against the Holy Ghost.  More on this sin in my homily here.

One has only to read the OP-ED page of our local newspaper to see what this looks like in action.  As recently as this week we have been presented with arguments from our village atheists who object to graduates of Liberty University teaching in our public schools. The fact is that dozens of Christians, some who are graduates of LU, teach in our public schools, but who, in the opinion of some, should be disqualified, not because they are incompetent, but because of who they are.  They are Christians.  On that basis alone, they ought to be disqualified regardless of the good work they may do among us and for the children of this city.

This is the definition of envy that Augustine spoke about.  Envy is not mere disagreement; envy requires at the least, the nullification of its object, and at worst, the destruction of its object. The Jews delivered Jesus to Pilate out of envy (Mark 15:10), a script that he read with deadly accuracy.  This fact is why Augustine registers envy as the sinful circumstance which gives rise to the unpardonable sin.

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