Unoffensively Offensive | The Institute for Creation Research
Unoffensively Offensive
“Woe unto the world because of offenses! for it must needs be that offenses come; but woe to that man by whom the offense cometh!” (Matthew 18:7).

The word here translated “offend” is the Greek skandalizo and “offense” is skandalar, from which we derive our English words “scandal” and “scandalize.” The basic meaning of these words is “to cause to sin” or “to ensnare.” It is bad enough to commit an act of sin, but even more scandalous in God’s sight is the act of causing someone to sin. It is especially dangerous to lead children into sin. “And whosoever shall offend one of these little ones that believe in me, it is better for him that a millstone were hanged about his neck, and he were cast into the sea” (Mark 9:42). What a solemn judgment awaits those teachers and counselors who lead their pupils to doubt or disobey the Word of God!

Yet, despite these and many similar warnings against “offenses,” we are also told that Christ, Himself, is “a stumblingstone and rock of offense” (Romans 9:33). There is a very real “offense of the cross” (Galatians 5:11), and the Apostle Paul says: “We preach Christ crucified, unto the Jews a stumblingblock (same word as ‘offense’)” (I Corinthians 1:23).

There is no contradiction, of course. The preaching of Christ and the cross is profoundly offensive to sinners and they will often react angrily, and sometimes violently, against it, thus compounding their sin. When we bear witness of Christ, our message is necessarily offensive, for it must condemn and convict before it can save. Nevertheless, it is profoundly important that, in any other respect than this, we never cause others to sin by bringing an offense. Our message may offend, but the context of life and word in which it is given should be without offense, if we would be faithful and effective in our service for Christ. HMM
The Latest
NEWS
Cells and Designers Both Use Control Theory
New research goes a long way in explaining how creatures actively sense their environment and adapt to it. One mechanism enables some organisms to track...

NEWS
Biological and Engineered Systems Employ Same Principles
New findings continue to support ICR’s theoretical assumption that biological functions are best explained by engineering principles.1...

NEWS
Preserved Organics Found in Ancient Stromatolites
Evolutionary scientists are continually searching for evidence of the “first life” on Earth. Their most recent claim involves well-preserved...

NEWS
Denisovan Epigenetics Reveals Human Anatomy
A recent study making the news involves the reconstruction of the facial features and anatomy of the enigmatic humans known as the Denisovan from genetic...

NEWS
New Estimate: Universe Two Billion Years Younger
Big Bang scientists recently used a new method to estimate the universe’s age. This method yields an age estimate that could be over two billion...