(July 19, 2019) Dr Jim McClure, straight shooting theologian, explains on this powerful imagery challenge declared by Jesus…
We are living at a time when we are increasingly compelled by the dictates of those who have embraced the philosophy of ‘political correctness’ to avoid the use of language and actions that may ‘cause offence.’ People are being encouraged to rage against those things that they claim have offended them and increasingly that rage is funnelled into legal action!
Consequently a diverse range of people, including comedians, sports people – and preachers – are being silenced for fear of prosecution.
When Jesus caused offence!
Of course, such taking of ‘offence’ is often a manipulative tool to silence and control and as a tactic it has been used for thousands of years.
In fact, Jesus sometimes ‘offended’ those to whom he spoke. For example, one day when he was in Capernaum a crowd gathered to hear what he had to say and they were quick to take offence at his words.
We read in John 6:32 that he said, ‘I tell you the truth, it is not Moses who has given you the bread from heaven, but it is my Father who gives you the true bread from heaven.’
And in verse 41-42 we see the outraged response to this – ‘At this the Jews began to grumble about him because he said, “I am the bread that came down from heaven.” They said, “Is this not Jesus, the son of Joseph, whose father and mother we know? How can he now say, “I came down from heaven?” How dare he say that! What an arrogant upstart!’ How offensive are his words!
Despite this reaction, Jesus ploughed ahead – ‘I am the living bread that came down from heaven. If anyone eats of this bread, he will live forever. This bread is my flesh, which I will give for the life of the world.” Then the Jews began to argue sharply among themselves, “How can this man give us his flesh to eat?”’ (John 6:51-52). (more…)