I’m Going to Offend Somebody

Offended Anyone?

Have you ever offended anyone? I bet you have. Sooner or later, all of us will. We may say something we don’t mean, act carelessly, or speak the truth without love. Offenses happen.

However, there are times when simple words and phrases will set people off. For example, if you want to rile people up into a tizzy, just get on Facebook or Twitter and post any of the following words (your opinion doesn’t matter):

  1. Image may contain: 8 people, outdoor

    Yes, that’s me in the center kneeling. My dad beside me. We raced Fords. (1987)

    Grits, okra, and turnip greens

  2. Roll Tide! / Go Vols!
  3. “Only two genders”
  4. “It’s only a translation.”
  5. Rapture
  6. First On Race Day (Ford)
  7. Second Amendment
  8. “My kids will never do that.”
  9. “only between a man and a woman”
  10. Donald Trump

Seriously, use any of those words and it won’t take 10 minutes before people are arguing and fighting, calling each other names, questioning each other’s religion, and saying things like, “DON’T JUDGE ME!”

Nevertheless, we should do our best to “live peaceably with all men” (Romans 12:18). It should never be our intent to hurt feelings or make people angry. The apostle Paul instructed us to “follow after the things which make for peace, and things wherewith one may edify another” (Romans 14:19).  So, as much as is possible, we should watch what we say, choose our words carefully, and do our best not to offend.

And, when necessary, we should apologize.

The Rock of Offense

On the other hand, there are times when we MUST offend. Sometimes speaking the truth is the only loving thing to do; anything less is an offense to God.

For example, the following words will not make many friends but are guaranteed to generate hate-filled comments from around the troll-dwelling universe. Yet, they must be said!

  • Jesus is the Way, the Truth, and the Life, and no man can come unto the Father but by Him (John 14:6).

As a blogger, my words are read all over the world by people who hate the name of Jesus, and when I mention Him they go ballistic. I hate it for them, but how can I remain silent?

Jesus told the followers of John the Baptist,

“…Go your way, and tell John what things ye have seen and heard; how that the blind see, the lame walk, the lepers are cleansed, the deaf hear, the dead are raised, to the poor the gospel is preached. And blessed is he, whosoever shall not be offended in me. – Luke 7:22-23 

I don’t like offending people, but here’s the thing: if we let the fear of offending silence the Truth, how then can we “follow after the things which make for peace?” There can be no real peace without the Prince of Peace.

So, I guess I’m going to offend somebody.

12 Comments

Filed under blogging, Christian Living, Christian Maturity, Defending Traditional Marriage, Defining Marriage, Faith, General Observations, Life Lessons, salvation

12 responses to “I’m Going to Offend Somebody

  1. It helps me to stay true when I remember that Jesus offended plenty of people and he was perfect and that we won’t appease everyone.

  2. I dropped the missus off at the airport this morning (future sis-in-law’s bachelorette party in Savannah!), and I stopped at one of my favorite coffee shops before the drive home (still typing this there, actually). The owner asked how the holidays were, mentioned my nephew spending most of Christmas and the days preceding at the hospital, and another customer asked if he got better.
    Turns out he is an atheist. Mentioning prayer set him off, and I was suddenly getting screamed at about if a god exists he “seriously f***** up with humans” and all who believe in it are stupid. Thankfully, it led to a decent conversation about free will and eventually politics. He even left later saying “It was nice to meet you! Have a nice day!” He was just happy to meet a Christian who did not get offended (even though he did) and stuck to their guns with a willingness to answer challenges. The coffee shop owner (also a pastor) was glad I was able to handle it.
    Point being, yep, sometimes we will offend even without meaning to, but it does not mean we have to be afraid nor offensive in the process. I am glad God gave me some extra grace and peace when that guy exploded!

    • Absolutely! Great story! It’s amazing what can come about when we confident in what we believe through faith, yet not a blind faith, and can speak to others with grace and love. It sorta dampens their gunpowder, so to speak.

  3. Have you therefore become their enemy by telling them the truth?

    • I do not make myself the enemy by sharing the truth of Jesus with one I want to see adopted into the family of God; I only become their enemy if they already hate Christ, for I will have identified with Him.

  4. Gregg Betts

    Why is it important to share this information, it seems like it should be private. How is God glorified by this?

    • I am unsure what you think should be private. The subject matter? The words?

      I would say it glorifies God by encouraging Christians to be bold in their faith. The whole point was that no matter what we say, religious or not, there’s always somebody who’s gonna be offended – especially in this day and age. Therefore, as much as you can, live peaceably with all men, but understand that even the greatest news in the history of man will still offend somebody.

    • Out of curiosity, Gregg, who are you, exactly? What connection do you have to your comment?

    • Looking forward to having you visit our little church tomorrow. Just so you won’t miss anything, Sunday School is at 10, and the worship service starts at 11. Since you’ll be coming from Chattanooga, make sure you leave early enough to beat the Atlanta traffic. Once you get past that, it’s clear sailing. Just make sure to have enough gas to go 45 miles after you get off of I20, else you might run out. Best to just fill up there at the truck stop at Exit 138 where you turn off on 15. You do know how to get here, don’t you? If not, just put the address into your phone and that will get you here. It’s 95 Bethlehem Church Road, Warthen, GA, 31094.

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