How do you react when you see people being hostile toward Christian beliefs? Do you let your anger simmer, get into an argument on Facebook, or just keep quiet? It’s difficult to know how to respond to those who show antagonism to our faith, but Peter gives us good advice in this passage.
I Peter 3: 13-18 Who is there to harm you if you prove zealous for what is good? But even if you should suffer for the sake of righteousness, you are blessed. AND DO NOT FEAR THEIR INTIMIDATION, AND DO NOT BE TROUBLED, but sanctify Christ as Lord in your hearts, always being ready to make a defense to everyone who asks you to give an account for the hope that is in you, yet with gentleness and reverence; and keep a good conscience so that in the thing in which you are slandered, those who revile your good behavior in Christ will be put to shame. For it is better, if God should will it so, that you suffer for doing what is right rather than for doing what is wrong. For Christ also died for sins once for all, the just for the unjust, so that He might bring us to God, having been put to death in the flesh, but made alive in the spirit;
Be willing to suffer or be misunderstood. Since the world finds holiness, obedience, and reverence for God confusing or even offensive, taking a stand for righteousness may bring you criticism instead of praise. Don’t fear the intimidation, but remember that when you are persecuted, you are blessed (Matt. 5:10).
Sanctify Christ as Lord in your heart. A follower of Jesus is no longer enslaved to the world but is now a slave of Christ and His righteousness (Rom. 6:18; 1 Corinthians 7:22).
Always be ready to give a defense for your hope. This is to be done gently and respectfully—never with anger or condemnation.
Keep a good conscience. You can’t foresee how God may use your example. Perhaps your righteous behavior and words will influence others to see their own sin and turn to Christ.
Even though our culture looks very dark, Christ can use your light to show someone the way to Jesus.
And that’s the memo.
*taken from InTouch Ministries Daily Devotional – July 23, 2020*