1 ¶ These things have I spoken unto you, that ye should not be offended. 2 They shall put you out of the synagogues: yea, the time cometh, that whosoever killeth you will think that he doeth God service. 3 And these things will they do unto you, because they have not known the Father, nor me. 4 But these things have I told you, that when the time shall come, ye may remember that I told you of them. And these things I said not unto you at the beginning, because I was with you. 5 But now I go my way to him that sent me; and none of you asketh me, Whither goest thou? 6 But because I have said these things unto you, sorrow hath filled your heart.
What does Christ mean by, “offended?” An offence causes someone to stumble, to be confused, to not be able to understand, to cause to sin. It does not always mean to make one indignant or to enrage them after insulting their sense of what is proper and what is not or disrespecting them.
1Peter 2:8 And a stone of stumbling, and a rock of offence, even to them which stumble at the word, being disobedient: whereunto also they were appointed.
Matthew5:29 And if thy right eye offend thee, pluck it out, and cast it from thee: for it is profitable for thee that one of thy members should perish, and not that thy whole body should be cast into hell.
Matthew 18:6 But whoso shall offend one of these little ones which believe in me, it were better for him that a millstone were hanged about his neck, and that he were drowned in the depth of the sea.
Psalm 119:165 Great peace have they which love thy law: and nothing shall offend them.
Much like God prepared the world of men with the book of Job for the reality of how life can come hard at even the most righteous-minded, Christ is preparing His disciples for what they are going to face as His followers. The reason that the religious elite in that day were willing to kill the disciples, thinking it was for God, was because they did not know God, the same as today in the Middle East when religious men murder Christians in the name of God it is because they do not know God, nor do they know Christ.
Christ is telling them now so they will remember what He said when the time of persecution comes. He is leaving soon. They aren’t asking, where are you going, because they are grieving that He stated He is leaving them.
When people, especially Christians who have a Bible, ask why bad things happen to people they are asking a foolish question. In the Book of Job God revealed to all of human history in the oldest book of the Bible ever written that you will experience pain and suffering and loss even if you are the most righteous and just man or woman on earth and you may not know why in this lifetime. Just trust God. That is what is required of you in those times that make no sense and seem so random and meaningless but that make you hate being alive.
Here, Christ lays out the future for His disciples and, by extension, every Christian in history who has suffered tribulation for their faith. Hey, it’s coming. I warned you. Get ready. The Bible tells us that God settles accounts but not necessarily in our preferred timeframe and not necessarily in this life.