Dr. Zach Crook
Has someone ever asked you a question you didn’t know the answer to? Peter warns of situations like this in 1 Peter 3. It’s easy to fumble over your words if you weren’t expecting the question, but for questions of faith, the Bible provides us with ways to understand and explain our faith to others. If you expect that someone may one day ask you a faith-centered question, you can prepare an articulate answer that holds true to the Word of God. Sometimes this is easier said than done, but Peter assures us that it’s worth our effort. If you’re wondering what it looks like to do this in the modern age, here are a few tips.
1. Act Like You Know What You are Talking About.
The words that Peter wrote to a church facing persecution still remain pertinent today. He reminds us that this world is not our home, so we are called to live out our faith in a way that is different from the rest of the world. The gospel contains some amazing truths, but they also remain very logical. Because God is a God of order, we can be prepared to reason with people as we explain what we believe. The Bible says we are ambassadors, which means we represent Christ. Our witness can point people to Him, even as they ask questions and wrestle with Christian beliefs.
Even as you live your life by Christian morals, people may notice and ask you about it. We can respond to these questions with joy. There is no reason to be afraid or insecure as we share our faith. The Bible promises that we will have the Holy Spirit to help us and give us the words we need. Because of this, we have hope that we can share. We cannot just act like we know what we’re talking about, but we need to actually know what we’re talking about. Diligence to study the Word and speak to God is crucial. When you experience the peace that comes from this, people will notice.
2. Win People, Not Arguments.
As you discuss your beliefs with the people around you, it’s important to remember that winning the argument isn’t your objective. Jesus loves the person you’re talking to, and He wants you to show that love in how you interact with them. No one has ever been berated on social media and then been convinced to follow the god that the internet bully promotes. In any gospel conversation, the priority should be to win over the heart of the person rather than proving you know more than them.
We have to step back and remember it’s not us versus them. It’s us versus Satan. They aren’t the enemy. We want to win people, not arguments. Peter challenges us in 1 Peter 3 to be ready with a reason. We don’t need to fear or be intimidated because Christ is Lord and God is on His throne. Are you ready? We are called to be prepared at any time to give a defense to anyone who asks the reason for the hope that is in you.
3. Your Testimony Can Change Lives
Are you prepared to share your testimony? We’ve got to think about two questions that we need to answer when people come and ask us about the hope that we have. You should be prepared to answer the questions:
- Why do you love Jesus?
- How did He change your life?
We see this time and time and time again in Scripture that sharing your testimony can change lives. It’s our job to live a hope-filled life in a hopeless world. We are called to be ready to go out and share about who Jesus is and what He’s done. In sharing our testimony, the Holy Spirit can speak to people and take hold of their hearts. There’s no greater joy than sharing how Jesus has changed your life and seeing this message change someone else’s life. But it’s difficult for people to hear the good news of the gospel and not be changed. It’s the best news on Earth!
This year, as you walk through all the trials and tribulations that may come your way, remember what Peter wrote to the early church. 1 Peter 3:14-17 says, “But even if you should suffer for righteousness, you are blessed. Do not fear them or be intimidated, but in your hearts regard Christ the Lord as holy, ready at any time to give a defense to anyone who asks you for a reason for the hope that is in you. Yet do this with gentleness and reverence, keeping a clear conscience, so that when you are accused, those who disparage your good conduct in Christ will be put to shame. For it is better to suffer for doing good, if that should be God’s will, than for doing evil.”
I want to challenge you and encourage you to be ready with a reason for the hope that you have. Always be ready to share about who Jesus is and what He’s done. Who knows what God might do through each and every one of us if we’re ready to share about the hope that we have in Him!