Friday after the Eighteenth Sunday after Trinity Sunday
Scripture: 1 Peter 3:15-22 (NKJV)
3:15 But sanctify the Lord God in your hearts, and always be ready to give a defense to everyone who asks you a reason for the hope that is in you, with meekness and fear; 16 having a good conscience, that when they defame you as evildoers, those who revile your good conduct in Christ may be ashamed. 17 For it is better, if it is the will of God, to suffer for doing good than for doing evil. 18 For Christ also suffered once for sins, the just for the unjust, that He might bring us to God, being put to death in the flesh but made alive by the Spirit, 19 by whom also He went and preached to the spirits in prison, 20 who formerly were disobedient, when once the Divine longsuffering waited in the days of Noah, while the ark was being prepared, in which a few, that is, eight souls, were saved through water. 21 There is also an antitype which now saves us—baptism (not the removal of the filth of the flesh, but the answer of a good conscience toward God), through the resurrection of Jesus Christ, 22 who has gone into heaven and is at the right hand of God, angels and authorities and powers having been made subject to Him.
“Always be ready to give a defense to everyone who asks you a reason for the hope that is in you, with meekness and fear.”
What is the hope that is in us? It is nothing other than the hope of eternal life; the hope that this life is not all there is; the hope that every hurt, every disappointment, every sadness will forever be gone, and we will live under Christ in everlasting righteousness, innocence, and blessedness. And when the Scriptures speak of this hope, it’s not the “I hope so, but I can’t be sure” sort of hope. It is rather the “sure and certain hope” that we have through faith in Christ.
So we are invited to “be ready to give a defense to everyone who asks you a reason.” The world around us grows ever more skeptical, even contemptuous of our Christian hope. We are not to repay them with contempt, but rather in meekness speak the simple truths that we know: We are sinners. God has addressed our sins by sending His Son into the flesh to die for us. He is risen from the dead. Through repentance and faith in Christ we may have everlasting life.
You need not worry about changing their minds. The Word of God and the Holy Spirit do that. Rather, in meekness and fear, speak the hope you embrace through faith in Christ Jesus.
We pray: Heavenly Father, thank You for my certain hope of eternal life through faith in Christ Jesus. Help me to open my mouth, that others may come to know this great salvation. Amen.
Scripture taken from the New King James Version®. Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson. Used by permission. All rights reserved.