The Story: God is not pleased when unbelievers rail on against the faith of Christ. But Christians make a mistake when we think that our only or even our best apologetic against such people is to shout louder or argue more vehemently. The goal is to “put to silence” those who rage against the Lord and His Gospel. The way to do that is “by doing good.” The lives Christians live are the strongest testimony to the reality of the Gospel, but we make ourselves, and our Gospel, vulnerable to the brash arguments and boasts of radical unbelief when we fail to do the good works for which we have been redeemed (Eph. 2.8-10). We can’t talk the world to salvation; and, while we must talk with them in order for them to hear the Good News of the Kingdom, if all we do is talk – if we do not walk our talk as well – then we’ll never silence the loud and persuasive voices of unbelief which are a stumbling-block to many.
The Structure: The Christian witness is life and words, not simply one or the other. It is the will of God hat we work hard to show the reality of Christ’s resurrection by our unity together (Jn. 17.21) and our selfless good works (Matt. 5.13-16). At the same time, we must be able to answer every detractor and respond to every question. But the way we live the hope of the Gospel will be the most convincing aspect of our witness. Remember: Jesus commanded us to be His witnesses, not just to do witnessing (Acts 1.8).
How might you begin to show the people around you the reality of the hope you have in Jesus?
Each week’s studies in our Scriptorium column are available in a free PDF form, suitable for personal or group use. For this week’s study, “Lived Witness: 1 Peter 2.13-25,” simply click here.
T. M. Moore
Scripture taken from the New King James Version. © Copyright 1982 by Thomas Nelson, Inc. Used by permission. All rights reserved.