Thanks for joining us on this journey of building a consistent habit of reading our Bibles every day. The Bible reading plan we are using this year can be found here: One Year Bible or here on the Bible app. As always, if you miss a day, don’t feel compelled to go back and catch up. Just skip it and start back on today’s date. I am reading the NLT this year, but feel free to use whatever version you prefer. Now here are some thoughts from today’s readings:
Jesus responded, “It isn’t right to take food from the children and throw it to the dogs.”
– Matthew 15:26
Here we see a couple important ideas. First, Jesus warns of teaching our own ideas as if they were commands from God. This still happens today! We must be very careful to make sure what we teach as commands are clear in His word, not just our interpretation of it. There’s what the Bible says and there’s what we think it means. We must be very clear on which is which.
Second, we see a woman come to Jesus for her daughters healing and Jesus does the most appalling thing you might in the New Testament. Jesus tells this woman that He can’t heal her because she is a dog… A dog! That’s not the loving Jesus we see in pictures and movies. In fact, this would be akin to the worst racial slurs of our times. Can you imagine? If a religious leader used a slur like this it would be all over the news in social media in an instant. Why in the world would He do something like that?
When you read the gospels, there are a lot of times where it really seems Jesus is trying to offend people just for the sake of offending them. It may seem odd, but, the moment they move past offense, something miraculous happens. It’s like Jesus needed them to overcome the opportunity to be offender as a test of their faith.
I wonder if overcoming offense in our own lives is part of seeing the miraculous happen? I wonder if the reason God allowed that person to say that to you, allowed you to be treated that way, let you see that social media post, see that news story with “those” people, hear that sermon that may have been a little off, or listen to that politician’s speech was to test your faith. Many people use the words faith and belief interchangeably, but I have always felt a better word for faith is hunger. Jesus wanted to see if these people were so hungry for a touch from God that they were willing to let go of their right to be offended so they could focus better on Christ. This lady did just that and got exactly what she was looking for.
The western Church needs a lot of this kind of hunger these days, and unfortunately, it seems to be in short supply. What kind of message would it send to the world if Christians were literally unoffendable? More importantly, what kind of message would it send to God if we were so focused on seeking Him that we didn’t have time or energy to waste on offense?
Examine your own heart and life. On a scale from 1 to 10, how close are you to being unoffendable? Comment Below. (where 10 is completely unoffendable)