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Batterson: Who Are You Going to Offend?

One of the most important decisions you’ll ever make is this: who are you going to offend? You’ll offend somebody; I promise you that. But will you offend man or God? That single decision will set the tone of your life. Either you’ll become a people-pleaser because you’re afraid of offending people. Or you’ll become a God-pleaser because the last thing you want to do is offend the Almighty.

It’s hard not to draw tremendous inspiration from the story of Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego. King Nebuchadnezzar had shown them great favor and put them in positions of authority. It had to be difficult to refuse to bow to his ninety-foot statue. He was the second-to-last person that they wanted to offend. The first? God.

Daniel 3:16 says, “O Nebuchadnezzar, we do not need to defend ourselves in this matter. If we are thrown into the blazing furnace, the God whom we serve is able to save us. He will rescue us from your power, Your Majesty. But even if he doesn’t, Your Majesty can be sure that we will never serve your gods or worship the gold statue you have set up.”

It was their unwillingness to offend God that set the table for one of the most amazing miracles in Scripture. God delivered them from the fiery furnace.

Who are you going to offend? You need to settle it now.

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Mark Batterson is the lead pastor of National Community Church in Washington, D.C., a multi-site church and a leading fellowship in the nation’s capital. Meeting in movie theaters and Metro stops throughout the D.C. area, NCC is attended by more than 70 percent single twenty-somethings. Mark’s weekly podcast is one of the fastest growing in America. His book, In A Pit With a Lion on a Snowy Day: How to Survive and Thrive When Opportunity Roars peaked at #44 on Amazon.com’s best-seller list. He has just released his newest book entitled, Wild Goose Chase: Reclaiming the Adventure of Pursuing God. He and his wife Lora live on Capitol Hill. They have three children.