Then said he unto the disciples, It is impossible but that offences will come: but woe unto him, through whom they come! It were better for him that a millstone were hanged about his neck, and he cast into the sea, than that he should offend one of these little ones.Luke 17:1-2
The word “offence” (or in the U.S. offense) means something much more than having your feelings hurt. It means to tempt someone to sin or lead them to commit a sin.
Jesus says that it is inevitable that this will occur. Why is that? It is because we live in a sin-cursed earth that is inhabited with sinners. However, Jesus tells us that there is still no excuse for offending anyone, anytime.
We are not allowed to excuse the behavior saying, “The devil made me do it.” A person born of the spirit may be tempted by the devil but he is not being controlled by him. When we sin or we tempt someone else into sinning, we made a choice and did it. Its all on us.
Some who correctly believe in the total depravity of man in his unregenerate state attempt to blame their depraved nature. Basically, they replace “the devil” with “my depravity,” and say, “My depravity made me do it.” The problem with this is when a person is born again they receive faith. Within that faith is the desire for righteousness. Yes, our old nature is still there but it no longer controls us. We are now dead to sin rather than being dead in sin. This means that we make the choice to sin. We are not helpless.
Let not sin therefore reign in your mortal body, that ye should obey it in the lusts thereof.Romans 6:12
If I can let something reign or not let it reign, that means it is in my choice and under my power.
The other main excuse often used is that society accepts some behaviors as ok. Well, whether society says its ok or even the government says something is legal, doesn’t matter. If God calls something a sin, it is a sin.
Remember the case of the unjust steward. The worldly master praised his servant for acting like him and the rest of the world. Jesus rebukes such behavior saying that the is not the behavior of a child of light but a child of the world. He also said that such an attitude leads to perpetual insecurity!
The fact of the matter is, if someone tempts or leads someone else into sin, they will answer to a Holy God Who has declared what is moral and what is not. Whether God chastises or punishes in time or He condemns for all eternity, it is a dangerous thing to live in and encourage immorality.