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Offended--and Proud of It  

Taking offense.

In the last two or three years, it has replaced baseball as America’s pastime. These days, it seems everyone is offended and going to bat about something. There is nothing, it seems, over which we will not be offended.

While humans have managed to irritate each other since Adam and Eve, today's cultural climate offers two distinct differences. First, social media has created a global platform to air those grievances.  And air them we do. Second, a sustained pattern of lawsuits has given birth to the notion that "If I am offended, so you must placate me."

The implication is that others must change for me—so I can feel "safe" or valued or equal.  Gone is the idea that reasonable people might share reasonable—even sharp—differences of opinion without demanding one side cave in.

We should be able to disagree and remain civil. Anything else is opposed to biblical virtues like kindness, gentleness, and "esteeming others better" than ourselves (Phil. 2:3). The Bible argues love "does not demand its own way" (1 Corinthians 13:5). Who should be more civil than Bible-believing Christians?

But increasingly, I see believers adopting the world’s self-centered mindset, slapping godly labels on godless attitudes. We’re offended—and by golly, this evil world had better know it!

Certainly, there is much in our culture that is opposed to our Christian faith.

Certainly, there is much over which we could be offended.

Certainly, we must never call evil good or good evil.

But with all that said, there is precious little over which Christians have a right to be offended. Consider Christ. He endured insults, slander, jeering—regularly.  Yet we see not one hint of offense taken on His part.

The old chorus had it right:

They’ll know we are Christians by our love.

Not our sense of offense.

 

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Jon GaugerJon Gauger

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Jon Gauger Media 2016