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We can learn a lot about this subject of overcoming offense by looking at the life of the apostle Paul. Paul was one of the greatest examples in the Bible of someone who lived free from offense.

If anyone ever had the opportunity to be offended at God and man, it would have been Paul. He was beaten, shipwrecked, robbed, stoned, hated, and lied about. In fact, just about any form of persecution you can imagine, Paul endured (2 Cor. 11:23-28).

However, after experiencing all these troubles, Paul was still able to say, "And herein do I exercise myself, to have always a conscience void of offense toward God, and toward men" (Acts 24:16).

Paul made it clear that a person can't become free from offense overnight. He said, I exercise myself. In other words, it's work to maintain a conscience void of offense toward God and man!

Think about what it takes to see any benefit from exercise. For instance, you don't go down to the gym, perform one sit-up and then return home and say, "Whew! I really worked out today—I did one sit-up! I know I'll have great results!" No, you know that in order to see results from exercise, you have to do it countless times.

In the same way, you must constantly work to stay in the love of God and to keep yourself from getting offended by what people say or do to you.

Only as you continually put the Word of God to work in your life can you maintain a conscience free from offense and overcome the giants you face.

Let me give you one example of how you can "exercise yourself" in this area as Paul did. Whenever an offensive situation arises, ask yourself these questions: What does the Bible say about it? What would Jesus do about it?

If you will automatically respond to every potentially offensive situation with these two questions, you will learn to stay free from all offenses.

In Matthew 11:6, Jesus gives us another clue to help maintain a conscience void of offense. He tells us: And blessed is he, whosoever shall not be offended in me.

How do we stay free from offense? By keeping ourselves in Jesus. When we abide in Jesus, we are free to love people, no matter what they may do to us.

When we operate on our own apart from Jesus, we soon find ourselves out of spiritual fuel, sputtering like a car that is out of gas. Suddenly we are more irritable than we ought to be. People grate on our nerves more than they normally do.

On the other hand, when we feed on the Word and maintain unbroken fellowship with Jesus, things that used to bother us greatly don't bother us quite as much anymore. That's why it's so important to abide in the Vine—Jesus Christ (John 15:4).

Source: Get Over It: Overcoming the Enemy's Strategy of Offense
by Kate McVeigh.
Excerpt permission granted by Harrison House Publishers

Author Biography

Kate McVeigh
Web site: Kate McVeigh Ministries
With a heart to help people discover who they are in Christ, Kate McVeigh is one of the most sought after female speakers in America today. Combining her personal experiences with down-to-earth teaching of the Word, she shows people how to become all that God has called them to be.

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