"And blessed is he who does not take offense at Me." -- Matthew 11:6. Jesus, having finished giving instructions to His disciples begins to answer John the Baptist's questions as to whether or not He is actually the Messiah or as Matthew 11:3 puts it, "the Expected One." Jesus confirms that He is the Expected One and concludes His answer by saying "blessed is he who does not take offense at Me." We are blessed if we are not offended at Jesus.
Offended. I don't think there is not a single one of us who are not familiar with being offended by someone or something. But let me ask you this, have you ever been offended by Jesus?
Offended. This might seem like an outrageous question to ask but bear with me, ponder this question as you read on.
Offended. Before we explore this concept of being offended by Jesus I want to briefly hit on the two key words in this verse: blessed and offense. The word blessed has to do not with physical blessing but with divine favor or approval from God. This is similar to the way it is used in the Beatitudes in Matthew 5:1-12. Second, the word offense here has to do with being repelled by someone, in this case Jesus. This deepens the question a little bit.
Offended. We not only need to ask ourselves if we have ever been offended by Jesus but we need to ask ourselves have we ever been repelled by Jesus? Again this might seem like an outrageous question but its completely valid and here is why.
Offended. First of all I will be the first to admit I have been offended by Jesus and here is what I mean. The broader definition of offense here in Matthew 11:6 has to do with sin. What I am trying to say is I know there have been times in my life where I know Jesus expects one thing of me and I do another. The fact is at some point in our Christian walk we have all been offended by Jesus.
Offended. Let's take a look at the other side of the coin though. What is awesome about this verse is that we see that when we do not allow ourselves to be offended by Jesus but decide to follow Him, we are the recipients of divine favor or the approval of God. Its an encouraging thought to know that whenever I put the will of Christ above my own, God smiles down on me. This should be an encouraging thought to us all.
So in closing, I don't really have a practical application but I leave you with the question, have you ever been offended by Jesus? Chances are the answer is yes but we can take encouragement in the fact that we can still do better next time by making a conscious choice to put the will of Christ above our own. As a result we can be the recipients of God's approval. May we remember, "Blessed is he who does not take offense at Me."
DO SOMETHING ABOUT IT! PRAY ABOUT IT! LOVE Y'ALL! GOD BLESS!