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Offence Created on 6 November 2017

Since the earliest days Christianity has been under attack. It is not a victim-statement to say so - history tells us that. And it is true today. The enmy is the same and so too the nature of Man. Truly, Solomon was right when he said that there is no new thing under the sun[1].

In the time of Jesus, many flocked to see and hear Him, and many came to be healed by Him. Many had a wonderful testimony to share - not only those who were healed from terrible ailments or diseases [2] and delivered from demons, but also those who witnessed it all or who were related to the person in question who had been healed or delivered. Having been healed was one thing. But having been delivered from 'satanic persons without bodies' was something new altogether. The New Testament tells us that this had never been done before[3].

So, there is no question that the Jews had lots of evidence to be convinced that Jesus was the Son of God. Accordingly, the Bible tells us that many, many people followed Him[4].

But what happened to these people when they were presented an opportunity to demonstrate their 'professed' faith? In reality, none of the 5,000 men who were fed stood up for Him. None of those who were healed. None of those who were delivered from demons. None of those who reaceived the Word of life in truth. Why?

Very likely, some would not have been around at the time of His betrayal. But others had turned away from Him because His message had become offensive [5]. I am not going to read too much into it but it is interesting nevertheless that the verse which records His disciples turning away from Him is John 6:66.

From this passage, we also see that if the Father had not granted fellowship with Him, it will not take place. How the Father has made that determination the Bible does not say. But the one thing that stands out is that the ones who turned away from Him were the ones who became offended. The habbit of taking offence - a function of an engraved tendency towards certain feelings as opposed to hearing truth - is what caused them fellowship with the Lord.

As I see it, the ones who are in the habbit of easily taking offence even in social conversation are the ones at risk!

 

Footnotes:

[1] 9 History merely repeats itself. It has all been done before. Nothing under the sun is truly new. (Ecclesiates 1:9, NLT) [back]

[2] 19 So Jesus and his disciples got up and went with him. 20 Just then a woman who had suffered for twelve years with constant bleeding came up behind him. She touched the fringe of his robe, 21 for she thought, “If I can just touch his robe, I will be healed.” 22 Jesus turned around, and when he saw her he said, “Daughter, be encouraged! Your faith has made you well.” And the woman was healed at that moment. (Matthew 9:19-22, NLT) [back]

[3] 32 When they left, a demon-possessed man who couldn’t speak was brought to Jesus. 33 So Jesus cast out the demon, and then the man began to speak. The crowds were amazed. “Nothing like this has ever happened in Israel!” they exclaimed. (Matthew 9:32-33, NLT) [back]

[4] 21 About 5,000 men were fed that day, in addition to all the women and children! (Matthew 14:21, NLT) [back]

[5] 66 From that time many of His disciples went back and walked with Him no more. (John 6:66) [back]

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Please consult the Bible and test what is written here. Ask the Lord to give you wisdom in this area. Keep that which is good and reject that which is not Scriptural. Should you come to a different understanding than I please let me know - perhaps I can learn from you.

 

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