LUKE 17: 1-2

The poet was right—none of us are an island to ourselves. We do not live in isolation from people. We affect
others by the things that we do, and others affect us. It becomes a serious matter when we have a negative
affect on others.

These words were address to the disciples of Jesus. The context may not be clear at first, especially with what
has gone before. However, it is probable that Jesus was warning His disciples about following the example of the
religious leaders of the day. They were constantly discouraging those who were considering following Jesus.
They were putting obstacles in the way to the “little ones.”
Who are the little ones about whom Jesus is concerned? In the Gospel of Matthew they are identified as
children, but in this context it may be a term of endearment for those who are seeking to follow Jesus. When you
do something that hinders or harms those who are following Him, it is a serious matter.
What about the offences? “It is impossible that no offenses will come,” Jesus declares. An offense is anything
over which a person might trip or fall. Berkley Version translates the word “obstacle.” In this context the word
refers to a temptation to sin. And the sin could be the sin of refusing to follow Jesus. It is a most serious matter
when a person makes it difficult for another person to put their faith in Christ, and to follow Him as Lord.
There are two important truths about “obstacles to the little ones” set forth in these brief verses. They are
sobering truths that should guide our behavior day by day. Those of us who are Christians need to identify with
both sides of this statement. We need to think of the words from the perspective of the “little ones,” and from the
side of the one placing the obstacle in their way.
Becoming a follower of Jesus does not make you immune to sin. You are still vulnerable. Christ leaves His
followers in the world where they will be tempted and tried. Jesus realized this and declared, “It is impossible but
that offences will come: but woe unto him through whom they come.”
1.        The situation of the little ones makes obstacles certain.
While His “little ones” are no longer of the world, they are still in the world. It is the nature of the world in which
they continue to live that makes them vulnerable. This world will always be to them a source of temptation. And
the problem is aggravated by the fact that they are always a minority in the world. Jesus described the way of the
world as being a “broad way that leads to destruction.” None of us enjoy being different! We have a deep desire
to “fit in” and to be accepted in the world.
As long as you are in the world, you will be subject to temptation. Just when you think you are beyond
temptation, you will fall.
2.        The humanity of the little ones makes obstacles certain.

1.        Most temptations come through people.
2.        There is a woe on those who present temptations.
3.        To whom do these words apply?
A.        The peddler of illegal drugs.
B.        The producers and sellers of porn.
C.        Delinquent Parents.
D.        The Hip-Hop Music industry.
E.        The false religionist.
F.        The dysfunctional church.