The Christian Life

What Is the Spirit of Offense?

As ordinary and natural as getting offended may seem, it can be deeper than that for a Christian and their faith work. Surprisingly, many believers are fond of dismissing offenses and regarding them as a norm since Jesus in Luke 17:1 affirmed that offenses are impossible to avoid and must happen. What they often fail to understand is that most of the time, offenses arise, and there is usually a spirit behind them. When you notice a particular church or Christian community with members who get offended for no reason, such a congregation is plagued by the spirit of offense.

The spirit of offense is a spirit that the Devil uses to lure Christians into sin and open within their hearts a pathway to a life of iniquity. The spirit of offense does not just stop with the Christian’s heart, but its effects are felt within the church as a body. Like most subtle spirits, this spirit can be easily ignored. However, a Christian who fails to pay attention to this wicked spirit will likely have their faith walk cut short by the spirit of offense. Continue reading to learn how to overcome the spirit of offense and live a victorious life. 

Where Did the Spirit of Offense Come From?

Biblically, there is no record of the origin of certain spirits, one of which is the spirit of offense. However, there are a few mentions of offenses in the Bible. One of the most important of these mentions is in Luke 17:1-2. Jesus’s teaching to his disciples declared that offenses would be a constant thing in the church, but life would be sad for the person through which offenses get into the church. From this verse, we can infer two things. First, the plan of God for His church does not include the constant presence of offenses. So, since God does not wish offenses for His church, it is safe to say that offenses cannot come from God. 

Second, Jesus declared woe on the person through whom offenses come into the church. Woe here translates as great sadness or calamity. God cannot say woe on someone for bringing offenses if it is His will. Therefore, God delivering such judgment means that such persons carrying offenses among Christians were acting according to the command of the Devil, thus the reason for such judgment. Simply put, the Devil is the source of the spirit of offense. He seeks to infiltrate the church with anger, distrust, divisions, and confusion, all birthed once the seed of offense is sown.

What Is the Spirit of Offense?

The spirit of offense is a demonic spirit that seeks to capture a Christian’s heart, sow several evil seeds in it, and open him up to other wicked acts that will ultimately destroy his relationship with God. Such a spirit inhabits a Christian’s heart and pollutes it with bitterness and strife. With such seeds in the heart of a Christian, this spirit ensures that you are reluctant to pray, fast, and fellowship with the brethren. Once it successfully isolates you from prayer, the Word, and the gathering of believers, the spirit of offense begins to make sins like lying, stealing, keeping malice, fighting, and quarreling seem appealing. It is through this pattern that Satan steals the souls of Christians and turns their hearts away from salvation. 

The spirit of offense is also a wicked spirit that brings pride into a Christian’s life and, by so doing, expels love. In 1 Corinthians 13:4, Apostle Paul stated some attributes of love, and he affirmed that love is not puffed up. Love is the foundation of the Christian’s faith in God, relationship with God, and dealings with other men. Knowing this, the Devil employs the spirit of offense to attack love in Christians with pride and arrogance.

What Is the Spirit of Offense

The pride that comes with this spirit is such that it prevents you as a Christian from taking corrections from fellow Christians and even people playing leadership roles. To a believer with the spirit of offense, every form of reprimand or correction is translated to mean a personal attack. So, such a person is often angry, bitter, and resentful towards fellow Christians and leaders in the church. 

Also, when learning about the spirit of offense, you must recognize that this spirit expresses itself as a spirit of chaos, first in the life of a Christian and then spreading within the church. It builds up intense resentment and unnecessary hate towards other people within the heart of a Christian such that it influences their actions. So, a Christian with this spirit is the first to pick up a quarrel against another Christian and often the last to settle one. The spirit of offense also influences believers to spread lies, rumors, and seeds of discord in the church. 

How To Overcome the Spirit of Offense

The first thing I should point out here is that you should never underestimate the spirit of offense as a believer. This is because most Christians are very conscious of sins like fornication, adultery, bribery, and theft, which are often tagged as serious sins. Then, they tend to ignore what David called little foxes in Psalm 51:10, traits that enforce the spirit of offense. For the church to grow in love and unity, Christians must learn to fight against the spirit of offense. Here are a few ways to do so: 

  • Pray for Love

As simple as this may seem, constant prayers for love for God and other Christians go a long way in keeping the spirit of offense away from your heart. This is because the spirit of offense works in two ways. You can either be actively partnering with this spirit by causing others to be offended or be the one pushed to pick an offense. So you need to have love for God and also love your fellow brethren. 

  • Intercede for the Church

One thing that stood out in the ministry of Paul is that he interceded for every church he visited. So we see places where Paul pointed out the flaws of a particular church, reprimanded them, and, after all that, prayed for them. Instead of being swift to point out the weaknesses or shortcomings of fellow Christians, take time to intercede for them first. 

  • Learn To Forgive Others

To show the importance of a believer forgiving others, Jesus in Matthew 6:12 pointed out forgiveness as a condition for our sins as Christians to also be forgiven. Also, in Ephesians 4:26, Paul advised Christians not to allow their anger to go on till the next day. This is quite important in the war against the spirit of offense because it feeds on anger, resentment, and unforgiveness that is bottled up. Therefore, the quicker you forgive and stop being angry, the less room you give the spirit of offense. 


The Devil is never happy when God’s church is united, so he proposes several ways to stop this unity. One such way is through the spirit of offense. The spirit of offense begins its operations in the believer’s life before spreading its tentacles to the church as a body. However, Christians can fight this spirit through constant and continuous intercession for the church, genuine prayer for love, and practicing forgiveness. 


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