Aware that his disciples were grumbling about this, Jesus said to them, “Does this offend you? – John 6:61
The gospels – Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John – are the biography of Jesus. The record that we have of how the Image of God interacted with humanity. How he taught, who he was in relationship, what drew his attention all give us a picture of the God who created us.
A lot of what Jesus taught was tough to hear. We can see that in the reactions of those who were present with Jesus, and we can feel that within ourselves as we read through the story of the Son of God.
When reading the gospels (or other parts of the Bible), it is interesting to note things that get us stirred up. What is offending you?
This is the same thing that Jesus asks in John 6:61 mentioned above.
In particular, being offended is often a sign that the sword of Jesus’ words are cutting into something that you hold close.
It could be decisions you make on how to handle money; it could be how you choose to live out your sexuality; it could be how you use Jesus to justify our approach to politics. Maybe it is something altogether different. Reasons to be offended are probably as numerous as people who follow Jesus.
What if we learned that when we are offended by Jesus, that is a good place to begin to develop awareness. What if we were comfortable enough with grace that we could ask “why am I offended?”
That can be the start of transformation. Grumbling, indignation, and accusation are hallmarks of the false self. Refusing to surrender a part of our self that is providing a way to cope or a sense of value. It is a withholding from God what is his to begin with.
So, as you breath and dwell richly on today’s verse, ask yourself “what about Jesus’ teachings offend me?”