THE SPIRIT OF OFFENSE
Let’s begin by giving a definition of offense.
Offense: Displeasure; anger, or moderate anger.
Scandal; cause of stumbling.
Offenses;- The Greek word is (skandalise)-verb- “to put a stumbling block in the way, cause to be caught (or) to fall, cause to fall away, be led into sin, offend, anger, shock.
The Hebrew word (ma aquash) pronounced (mak-ak-awsh) – meaning a crook (in the road), crooked thing or a quash-a prim root word, meaning to knot or distort, prevent, make crooked.
There are two kinds of offended people:
1. Those who have been treated unjustly.
2. Those who believe they have been treated unjustly.
The second group of people believe with their whole heart that they have been wronged, their conclusion was drawn from inaccurate information gained through assumption, appearance and hearsay, or their information is accurate, but their conclusion is distorted.
How many of us have ever had a conversation with someone, and what you heard them say and what they really said was two different things. Often offenses kept hidden are cloaked with pride, which keeps us from admitting our true condition. Some people try to bury their wounds or hurts, but if not dealt with, it will surface again and again.
An offense, if allowed to stay in your heart will produce more SIN. God is so faithful, He has the HOLY SPIRIT within us to reveal to us our sin. He does it in a way that it seems separate from us, so we feel convicted, but not hopeless and condemned. An offended believer is one who takes in life, but because of fear cannot release.
In the New Testament there are two kinds of love:
1) Agape— This is the God given love with no strings attached and is unconditional.
2) Phileo– This is the human kind of love that is conditional. It is selfish love, you do for me and I’ll do for you.
But know this, that in the last days grievous times will be upon us. But know this, that in the last days grievous times will be upon us.
Gen 37:26 And Judah said to his brothers, What gain is it that we kill our brother and conceal his blood?
It is righteous for God to avenge His servants: It is unrighteous for God’s servants to avenge themselves. According to the Scriptures, God sets the members in the body just as He pleases. When God places you in a body to let your roots go down and bear much fruit; the enemy will do all in his power to distract you and uproot you, because he does not want you to bear fruit. If you are offended and don’t take care of it, it will follow you and come up again and again. Many people float from church to church because there roots don’t go deep, leaving them so weak that they find themselves unable to endure any hardship or persecution.
God didn’t create us to live separately, but in unity, and to learn to work through our problems with each other, dealing not only with their flaws but our own and maturing thereby.
Spiritual growth involves neither time nor learning, it comes through obedience. When Jesus asked His disciples: “Who do you say that I am? “Peter replied, You are the Christ, the Son of the living God.” We need more than head knowledge, we need heart knowledge. A person who is not rooted or stabilized in the revealed Word of God is a candidate to be moved along by the storm of offense. A house built on the Rock (Christ Jesus), can endure the storms beating against it. It has been said that tests and trials really serve to locate where a person really is spiritually. Jesus is your sure Foundation!
We are told in Scriptures that God allows and brings shaking to our lives to show us what we are made of and if we are on a good foundation. God knew that the shaking in Simon Peter’s life would help him emerge from this experience not being independent, but interdependent on God. It is usually not the big things that shake us but the little things. The enemy tries to pervert our attitude about who God is to deceive us.
Before Jesus returns, God’s nature will once again be seen in God’s leaders, and this will cause a great healing to take place for many. We have to learn to trust our Heavenly Daddy even if we don’t understand. God gives grace to the humble, Peter understood this grace, because he experienced it first hand after Jesus’ resurrection when Jesus told Mary Magdalene these words at the tomb: “Go and tell my disciples and Peter.”
1Pe 1:14 as children of obedience, not fashioning yourselves to your former lusts in your ignorance,
God is a just Judge and He will see to it that justice is done. God avenges us, it is unrighteousness for us as believers to seek to avenge ourselves. God is a just judge, His rule of judgment is the same for all mankind. You obey His laws, you will be blessed; but if you disobey His laws you will be punished. When we try to correct wrong done to us we become the judge, trying to take God’s place. Jesus likened the condition of our heart to soil. The ground can only produce what is planted. If Unforgiveness, offense, and debt are planted, then instead of God’s love, another root comes up, the root of bitterness.
The Absalom sprit is one that overtakes assistants to leaders, even in churches. When someone is overtaken by a Absalom spirit they make statements like: “If I were in charge,” If I were the Senior Pastor of this church,” If I had been given that ministry.” Remember, what you sow you will reap. A root of bitterness is barely noticeable in the seed stage, but as it grows it becomes visible. Paul says the way to escape the trap of offense is to exercise. This means to train or discipline yourself not to let yourself become offended.
The way to exercise to stay free from offense is to pray for the one who offended and hurt you. Once you have released the person in forgiveness and you are healed, them a confrontation is needed at some point to complete the process. Therefore if we are to become mature in Christ, we must endure the hardships that will come our way when we stand against selfishness.
Some steps to healing and freedom from an offended spirit:
1) Admit you are offended and hurt.
2) Open your heart to the LORD’S correction.
3) Forgive and release the person from everything they have done.
4) Now exercise and strengthen your heart, mind and emotions by staying open and tender to the Holy Spirit’s voice and obedient to His Word.
5) Choose to not let negative thoughts reign in your spirit.
Jesus is saying, anger can lead to hatred, and hatred not dealt with can put one in danger of hell. No matter the reason, when we offend, the offended person’s understanding is darkened. So we must be willing to humble ourselves and apologize. Reconcile even if it isn’t your fault. Do it for your brother’s sake. It takes maturity to walk in humility to bring about reconciliation.
When one is submitted to godly wisdom they are not afraid to yield to the viewpoint of the other party involved in the conflict as long as it does not violate the truth.
In Matt. 5:9, Jesus does not say “peacekeepers” here but “peacemakers”.
Blessed are the peacemakers for they will be called the sons of God.
Peacekeepers avoid confrontation at all cost to maintain peace even if they must compromise truth, but the peace he keeps will not last, it will surface again and again. However, a PEACEMAKER will go in love and confront, bring truth which results in reconciliation that will last.
The bottom line: If I don’t forgive, I’m not forgiven by God. Forgiveness is a life and death decision for us spiritually.
If you have someone in your life that you are holding a grudge against, you need to confess it to God and ask His forgiveness. Then you need to go to that person and forgive them and ask them for their forgiveness. Don’t waste another day of your life with Unforgiveness hanging on your heart. Remember, God looks at the heart.
If you’ve never made Jesus the LORD and Savior of your life, now is the time to secure your future. Confess your sins and ask for forgiveness. He loves you and
If you always desire the approval of men, the anointing of God will not fall on you. Another word for liberty is privilege. The major difference between a slave and a servant is: A slave has to serve, but a servant wants to serve and he lives to serve.
Many Christians serve resentfully, give grudgingly and complain about it, in their heart they are still slaves. Jesus offended people through His obedience to His Father not by demanding His own rights. Others were offended by what He did for others, not what He was doing for Himself. We are to edify and encourage others not destroy them.
We need to check every area of our life in light of this Scripture passage in