The Enid News and Eagle, Enid, OK


June 1, 2013

Borrowed offense is a blessing stopper!

KREMLIN, Okla. — How many times have you heard someone say, “Now, don’t take offense” or “No offense, but ...”

In other words, “I am about to insult, hurt or anger you, but don’t take offense at what I am about to say.”

And, what do we do? We take those same offensive words and head straight for the nearest, most-compassionate, ear and share that offense in the hope we will be stroked and reassured what we just heard was not the truth.

But, look at what happens when we “share” our offenses. They become “borrowed offenses.”

The definition of a borrowed offense is when someone does something wrong to someone you know and love, but it did not involve you. They then tell you how they were treated or offended, and you get angry for them. You have just taken on their offense. It had nothing to do with you, but all of a sudden it becomes a very active part of your thought-life and your conversation. My question being: Why would anyone borrow someone else’s offense? Yet, we do it all the time.

For the sake of argument, and for those of us who are so guilty of this act, let’s examine the consequences of “borrowing someone else’s offenses.”

First of all, it becomes the topic of conversation at every turn and is broached quite often. The more we chew, the bigger it gets. Before long, emotions enter the ring, and we feel the need to take on this opponent ourselves. We will be their David and slew that giant with one sling of the stone. Next thing you know, bitterness has taken root, and we find ourselves speaking of our new-found offense to others, seeding more bitterness, releasing more venom and poison.

Bitterness produces anger beloveds, and an inability to forgive, and that produces hatred. And we all know if hatred is left unchecked, there is no limit to its destructive ability.

How do we know if we have borrowed an offense or if bitterness has taken root in our hearts? Just listen to what comes out of your mouth. Bitterness always produces an angry conversation.

Ephesians 4:31-32 teaches us to banish all bitterness, indignation, wrath, resentment, quarreling, malice or ill-will, and become useful and helpful, kind to one another, tenderhearted, compassionate, understanding, forgiving one another freely, as God in Christ forgave us. A lot easier said than done, huh? But, through Christ we can do all things.

Whenever an offense is taken, it releases something in the spirit realm that blocks the Spirit of God from operating in our life. That’s why it’s important to know the enemy and recognize his tactics.

The enemy (Satan) works continually at trying to keep us offended and full of bitterness, making sure it shows its ugly head at every turn so we will meditate on it, speaking it over and over again, producing the inability to forgive. Luke 6:38b says “... for the measure you give will be the measure you get back.” Besides, God says if we don’t forgive others, He can’t forgive us.

So, the next time you are tempted to take on someone else’s offense, stop and remember where this road leads. Rather, listen to your spirit man and speak peace to the situation. For your spirit man has an understanding and knows things your heart does not know. He will teach you the things of God, if only you will listen.

Friends, taking on the offense of others does make a difference in the realm of the spirit. It will plug your spiritual ears and tie up the flow of God in your lives. It is a blessing stopper!

John 20:23 reads, “Now having received the Holy Spirit, and being led and directed by Him, if you forgive the sins of anyone, they are forgiven; if you retain the sins of anyone, they are retained.”

So beloveds, turn loose of all those old offenses, and you will help others to do the same. Forgive, cast the care of that thing over on God. For He cares for you.

Keep the faith and worship somewhere today.


Sorrels is a News & Eagle editorial assistant and can be reached at or (580) 548-8140.

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