Pilate’s dilemna: What is truth?
                   John 18:  38
Jotting down what is stirring in me now…
●Jesus said, “blessed is he who isn’t offended (fall away) on account of me” (original text).  Luke 7:  23. Matthew 11:  6 shows that sometimes- the truth will offend. The prophet(s) in Israel offended the religious (not the poor or needy) – but those in religious and political power – it cost some their lives.
●Everyone likes the approval of a yes-man, because it appeases the flesh. We all like to hear what we want to hear. We want what we want, when we want it. It’s our human/carnal nature. All of us.
   …The Holy Spirit isn’t like us though – He is God. He speaks what we need to hear. He can’t help it. He can only tell the truth. It’s His God-DNA makeup. It’s His family trait. [His Father and Brother are the same way. They can only speak the truth]. But they prefer to be gentle and warm and gracious- another Godhead family trait. But when they have to, they get bold. Really bold.
●John the Baptist lost his whole head -when just a few inches south, his mouth spoke truth to power. In addressing Herod’s sin, you could say, John was as ‘politically incorrect’ as they come. Remember – Jesus said none was born greater of women than His firebrand cousin, John. Dear John!
●Recently, I heard a very sweet and dear believer make the statement ‘anything that offends’ is not a true prophetic word. They were sincere, ministering out of a tender heart, mercy. They were extolling the gentle and mercy aspects of God. Yet – as sweet and nice as that sounds – it’s biblically not true. Just one of many verses to substantiate this is Galatians 5:17, where we see His holiness (and God is truth) offends our flesh.
●Verses show the nature of raw truth is it can hit like a fire (Jer.23:  29), a hammer (Jer.50, 51) and much more. God is pure fire glory.  No one can look upon his face and live in their natural state (Exodus 33:  20). I wouldn’t call that sugar and spice and everything nice. I’d call that ‘woe is me, I am ruined.  Undone’. Isaiah 6:  5 – 9
☆ I believe with all my heart, our merciful God is trying to get us all out of ‘spiritual kindergarden’ and take us to the ‘Master’s Class post-graduate School of this Spirit’. He wants us all to grow up. To be ready for all the hard and necessary truths of the condition of the world and society, our families, ourselves, our own soul. He wants us all to do some deep deep internal cleansing by allowing His truth to show us truth as He is. He is a living fire.
●He knows we are going to stand naked in front of Him on that day. No clothes. No bones. No skin. Just our soul and spirit- which goes back to Him. He desires deeply for us to have so much joy at that moment – where we meet -face to face. He desires us to have no shame, no guilt, no regret. No lies that we carried with us. If we embrace His truth now – we can stand then. When it counts. On that day. 
Embraced in His fire. If we don’t clean up our act now, we will be consumed by His fire then. We either become part of His holy fire now – or  – get consumed by it later.  The choice is personal for each of us. No one can make it for us.
●God commanded those who spoke for Him, that He chose, His election, to speak the whole counsel of God. 1st Corinthians 2:15 shows we need discernment to judge (speak) correctly the things of God, rightly dividing a matter. Jeremiah 23:  28 shows God wants us to speak the whole matter, not cut n’ paste, leaving out the parts that may offend some. There is a time for everything under heaven. Even words. Ecclesiastes 3 confirms it.
●God’s love is merciful and kind, because God is merciful and kind. Because of the (original) sin virus all mankind is born with, because power and greed and lust and every kind of devilish strategy fights our walk – the Lord employs moments of painful-truth-sessions to bring us all full-circle, so we change, from the greatest to the least. Truth does this -it is deep.
●We all know and love the 1st  Corinthians 13 verses. That is one side of the seesaw. But when the board hits the ground, we’re faced with other realities of living in a carnal earthsuit. The unpleasantries of being redeemed – it’s not a ‘once and done’ gig. It’s daily. Sometimes hourly. Sometimes moment by moment. Ouchy again.
●Sometimes (usually always) God’s healing cuts can hurt at first- because the light of the Holy Spirit examines us. He reveals our heart to us. Ouch. We are flesh. Our carnal (human) nature is offended- so sin can be repented of, dealt with, delivered from, redeemed, restored and made whole. The great Physician’s scalpel cuts, then heals.
And yes- our humanity is at first offended, before it is restored. That’s His way. Deep incisions into the souls.
●In an age of cheap grace and Laodicean whitewashed, political narratives, cultural marxism, let’s not confuse mercy with compromise or complicity. There is nothing kind about deception. It leads to a terrible end. Just awful.
●Truth is beautiful. It leads to everlasting life. Even when it (at first) offends. Let it cut, then heal.
As Hosea 6:  1 says “Come, let us return to the Lord, He has torn us, but He will heal us, He has smitten us, He will bind up our wounds”.
●God is Truth. He cuts, then heals. It is offensive to our soul to be cut – but it is necessary in the hands of a loving Creator. The cross demands it. If we carry the Christ within – we must needs be offended at times. We may even be the offender. Yet the healing will be seen. Fruit will be plentiful when the rose bushes are pruned with such care.
●We are healed and resurrected to be like Him, in Him and with Him. We will all be such beautiful flowers in His garden, when the master gardener, outside the tomb of the Resurrection, finishes His perfect truth-clipping in us. We will radiate such beautiful blooms.
“The wounds of a friend are faithful, but the kisses of an enemy are deceitful”. Proverbs 27:  6
“I AM the way, and the Truth, and the Life”  John 14:  6
Postscript thought…
■ Until the Day of the Lord – I think we may all (in His Church Body) be offended many ways. We will be offensive to the cultural norms, if we speak the truth (yes, in love) but boldly. If we label sin as sin, and don’t whitewash it. If we are jealous for Him to the point…. who cares if anyone understands or walks with us (like John) – as long as we feel Him breathing on the back of our neck, and hovering over us like a mama chicken over her eggs, we will be alright.
■ Do we cherish God’s Spirit so much – that we risk being offensive – even if we have to remove our presence in places – where we know God’s Spirit is offended. It is Him we must please first. Not others. Not ourselves. Him.
■ Who can escape the eyes of fire of the one to whom Isaiah and John, the prophets who fell as dead before Him. Revelation 19:  12 – 15
Shalom – Elizabeth 🌷