Skip to Main Content

Are We Overly Concerned About Offending Others?

| Choices

For most of my life, I have tried not to offend people, yet sadly I do. I have lived with the pain of, “not disappointing people.” I have battled this issue for most of my life. Feeling devastated when I feel I have let them down. Even though I knew it’s impossible to “please” everyone, I would always go the extra mile to be sure I didn’t disappoint. It’s foolish to offend people on purpose. It’s also foolish to think you can live your life pleasing everyone.

“Do you realize you offended the Pharisees by what you just said?” This was the question the disciples asked of Jesus (Matthew 5:12).

Jesus’ answer is very direct and challenging – especially to those who are overly concerned about offending others.

He didn’t say, “Please tell them I am sorry. They must have misunderstood me. I didn’t mean to hurt their feelings.” Instead, He replied, ‘Every plant not planted by my heavenly Father will be uprooted, so ignore them. They are blind guides leading the blind, and if one blind person guides another, they will both fall into a ditch.’” (Matthew 15:13-14)

Jesus was unmoved by the concern that He offended the pharisees. Are we sometimes overly concerned about offending others? Are there times when we should expect offenses and actually understand them to be a good indicator?

The words “ignore them” are forceful. Yet they are rarely understood and applied. Other translations say, “let them alone”, “leave them,” “stay away from those Pharisees!”

Greek NT: ἄφετε (aphete) – to send away, release or leave alone.

How should we apply these words? Are there certain people we should “leave alone”? Do we allow the wrong people to set the agenda for life?


Join Us for Worship

No matter where you are, we can share God’s love together, every Sunday.