Let's look at offense...what is it? According to the dictionary, it is "the act of causing anger, resentment, displeasure, or affront." Over the years, I have seen offense after offense committed...been the offended...and have even been the offender. And I have come to recognize that an offense is usually a "perceived" wrong done or said by another that causes pain. Are there people out there who purposely offend or wrong others?...The answer to that is a resounding yes, and the Bible says in Matthew 18:7, "Woe unto the world because of offences! for it must needs be that offences come; but woe to that man by whom the offence cometh!" There are some who will continually strive to create division in the body, purposely hurt because they have been hurt, and enjoy watching the chaos caused...but most people are not like this. Most do not purposely intend to harm with their actions or words. Some just do not think before they speak or act. Does this mean that we cut them off at the knees because we have perceived a hurt caused? The answer to that is a resounding no. The scripture is very clear about how we are to handle offense. If we do not handle it in the manner that scripture lays out before us despite the perceived wrong done by another...then we are in the wrong.
Matthew 18:15 says, "If your brother sins against you, go and tell him his fault, between you and him alone. If he listens to you, you have gained your brother." Scripture is clear... go to the offender ...and the offender alone... and tell him... If you're going around broadcasting to the whole world your or another's offense, then have you done what scripture says? Consider this when you do this...You are contributing even more to the offense...and by not only contributing, you're creating division amongst the body yourself.
Everyone needs a reminder now and again...so my advice to all...and even myself in this is... "Be quick to listen, slow to speak, and slow to become angry." James 1:19. AND when we have been offended... be quick to go to the offender in love and work it out. "Whoever would foster love covers over an offense, but whoever repeats the matter separates close friends." Proverbs 17:9 I encourage myself and all who read this...Don't be a contributor that causes more pain...more division...more offense but rather, if you are truly His, be quick in love to overlook offense and restore one another!