The Bait of Satan
The Bible says we should not intentionally do things that will offend others and cause them to stumble. But the Bible also says we all will have opportunity to be offended. That means there will always be something, someone, that can offend us. (Chapter 18:1-10)
The Bible also says that there will be people that get offended even by Jesus who was perfect. (Matthew 13:57, Mark 6:3, John 6:61) It is clear that many people are offended by the truth. Notice that Jesus did not stop speaking the truth just because someone is offended. It should also be clear that some people seem to live a life of easily being offended.
As long as we live on earth and there are people on earth we all are going to have opportunities to offend someone and to be offended. There is one who knows this very well, it is Satan. He knows how offenses can cause division, bitterness, hatred, especially among Christians. Being offended, and giving an offense is a bait of Satan. The bait of offense entices individuals to become hurt, bitter, resentful, unrepentant, to make very poor choices. All of these things are of Satan.
Sadly many Christians seem to have a homing device to sniff out the bait of offense. Sadly many gather others to eat of the bait. They get others to take on their offense. They become tools of Satan. People who get easily offended many times wear a ‘victim badge’. They make poor spouses, poor friends, poor employees, poor neighbors, poor Christians. Sadly there are also individuals who knowingly or unknowingly become stumbling blocks for others.
Because God is all knowing, knows the nature of man, and knows the tactics of Satan, in the Bible God gives us some principles on how to handle offenses. If someone offends us we are to go to that person and try to make amends with them. Did you hear that? The person who is offended to make amends. Why? I believe one reason is that if we are going to confront someone for offending us, we need to make sure in our own heart that they were in the wrong. Why? Because at times we are offended because of our own flaws, poor character traits, etc. Those who were offended by Jesus, were in error, not Jesus. Another reason why we should go to the person who offended us is because all of us are called to walk the higher ground. We are not to expect others to walk in what we are not walking in ourselves. One more reason for the principle of going to someone who has offended us, or sinned against us, is because we may realize that we made the offense bigger than what it is, or realize in the end they have not even sinned against us. We should then go to the person and apologize for getting offended. (Matthew 18:15-17)
The Bible goes as far as to say that if you are offended by someone you are to forgive them before you go to God in pray. Mark 11:25
Holding unto offenses is truly the Bait of Satan. Intentionally offending someone is the Bait of Satan.
So what should we do if the opportunity comes along to be offended? We could say “don’t get offended. But the truth is all of us get offended at times. The solution is when we do get offended, LET IT GO!!! Don’t hold unto it. Ask ourselves was the problem us or the person who we are offended by. If us, we need to LET IT GO!!!! If it is the person we should try to make amends. If not possible, LET IT GO!!!!!
The way to not get offended is to take a look at your own part in a situation. To take ownership for your stuff. To have thick skin but a soft heart. To understand that God allowed the ‘wrong’ to happen. Why? To build character in you. To bring maturity in your life. If you want to be offended by someone, you should be offended by God., He is the one that allowed the offense to happen. Good luck at begin offended by God. Did not go well for the Pharisees. Realize that the God of Heaven has every reason to be ‘offended’ by us multitudes of times. Good thing He does not hold unto grudges.
Listen, the right heart learns from offenses. The right heart does not grab the Bait of Satan. The right heart stops chewing on the Bait of Satan. The right heart seeks unity, not division.
There is a good book on this subject titled The Bait of Satan by John Bevere.