A Real Witness Mes a Difference in Attitudes - 1 Peter 3:16,17
July 7, 2023, 9:53 AM

“…keeping a clear conscience, so that those who speak maliciously against your good behavior in Christ may be ashamed of their slander. It is better, if it is God's will, to suffer for doing good than for doing evil.”

Although not a Christian, Gandi learned the tactic of non-violence from the New Testament. Martin Luther King was inspired also from passages like this one - to stand strong, but in respectful and gentle ways without violence. Peter is realizing the fight against evil is not something man can win. It is only by the power of the Lord that the Kingdom of God advances, and His tactic is to have His people show love, even to enemies. Sharing our faith and hope is to be done with gentleness and respect even to those who seek to do us evil, for they will be guilty of their actions based on our good responses. God will avenge and reward.

We must keep a good conscience. Live according to the moral teachings of the Bible. It is possible for your conscience to be deadened to the Spirit of God so that evil, lying, cheating, and covering things up do not affect us anymore. Commitment to holy living and a yielded spirit are qualities God uses in us.

Unfortunately, some preachers are arrogant or belligerent people. Some Christians carry a superior attitude toward others that is resented. God uses the humble. Humility comes not by doing or saying nothing, but by being aware that all we have comes from God.

If a believer is faithfully serving Christ, he will be criticized. If everybody speaks well of him, perhaps something is wrong. As a Christian you can gain from criticism by revealing weaknesses that need addressing, and if the charge is untrue, it can help one grow and bring glory to Christ. This attitude of turning it over to Christ, showing love and being kind, even in the midst of persecution, is what toppled communism with all of its tyranny and abuses.

A Christian witness must be prepared to be rational, gentle and maintain respect and with a clear conscience. Those who speak maliciously against such good behavior of Christians will be ashamed.

Alexander Solzhenitsyn said "Men have forgotten God. Marx predicted, “Religion will disappear and its quaint belief will be made obsolete by a New Socialist Man.”

He continues, "Political questions cannot be decided until there is sincere repentance, a return to faith by the people. That is the cross I must bear. In the study of scientific atheism, there was the idea that religion divides people. Now we see the opposite: love for God can only unite. Somehow, we must learn to put together the missionary role - absolutely critical for us now - and also learn from Marx that man can't appreciate life if he is hungry. "

Application: The Lordship of Jesus Christ impacts your affection, your actions, your answers, and your attitude. When Jesus is first in our lives He is able to do work through us in ways we cannot imagine.

Prayer: Lord, may it be so as we are witnesses to those around us.