In His Defense

Acts 17:22-23Then Paul stood in the midst of Mars’ hill, and said, Ye men of Athens, I perceive that in all things ye are too superstitious. For as I passed by, and beheld your devotions, I found an altar with this inscription, TO THE UNKNOWN GOD. Whom therefore ye ignorantly worship, him declare I unto you.”

My life before Christ (my BC days) was an example for what not to do. Many of my family more than gently prompted me to get some help for my problems and issues. But when Jesus found me, and I received Him as my Savior, the change was so significant, they all thought I had joined a cult.

Without much mentoring or guidance, I told them what I did know. I was rough and raw in my witness and attacked their religion instead of lifting up scripture and doing so in love. My zealousness caused a wedge between me and my family for some time. But as time wore on and I grew in the Lord, I was able to show them by the fruit in my life and in my children. 

My mother was particularly upset. She took great offense at leaving the religion and church she had so diligently taught me was her belief. Almost every conversation we would have ultimately ended up in an argument about my faith and her religion. 

It was almost ten years later at a family vacation, that she asked me why I believed what I believed. God gave me wisdom in my answer. I said; “I can only show you from the Bible. If that offends you, I am truly sorry, but, it is where I base my faith and belief in God.”

Opening my Bible there at the kitchen table, I told of my salvation and why I believe what I believe. It was a turning point. The arguments and questions were few after that and I wondered at what God was doing. I was able to give my Mom the full gospel on her death bed in the hospital.  My hope is that she heard and trusted Christ as Savior that day. 

The Word of God tells us:

1 Peter 3:15-16But sanctify the Lord God in your hearts: and be ready always to give an answer to every man that asketh you a reason of the hope that is in you with meekness and fear: Having a good conscience; that, whereas they speak evil of you, as of evildoers, they may be ashamed that falsely accuse your good conversation in Christ.”

Being ready to give an answer means you know what it is to tell them. Why do you have hope that Heaven is the place you will spend eternity? Could you show that one who would ask it of you? That is what God is asking of us in Peter’s epistle. Often, we stop at our own salvation and ignore the command of God to go into all the world and give the gospel to every creature.

Could you show someone from the Bible that you are promised Heaven? That your sins are completely forgiven? That the God you trust is real? 

The vetting process of a politician, or the fact checking of a testimony is very thorough. If God was not who He said He was, it would have been debunked a long time ago. He and His Word have stood the test of time throughout the ages. 

Two very prominent authors – both with legal expertise; have begun by setting out to disprove the Bible and Christianity only to become a follower of Jesus Christ based upon the evidence they found. Lee Strobel (Case for Christ) and Josh McDowell (Evidence that Demands a Verdict) have chronicled their path to belief in the Lord Jesus Christ. 

That was their testimony. If you have trusted the Lord Jesus Christ as your personal Savior, you have a testimony as well. I am convicted this morning to continue to grow in the knowledge of being able to always give that reason of hope. To be able to tell the atheist, the Jew, the Muslim, the devil-worshipping occultist, the lawyer, the homeless, those in bondage to sin and addictions of the wondrous freedom and liberty one can have as a born-again, bible believer.

We are all at different places in our walk with God. But that should not deter us from ever-growing and ever-learning about how better to be a faithful and effective witness for the Lord Jesus Christ.

We don’t have to have a law degree, but we are to stand in defense as one who knows the truth about what it is we believe. Start with your own testimony – it is what each of us knows best. Then, begin to support you faith with the Word of God.

I am a sinner because the Bible tells me that I am. (Romans 3:23)

I am deserving of eternal punishment in Hell because the Bible tells me that I am. (Romans 6:23)

I am a child of God because I trusted the Lord Jesus Christ just like the Bible said I should. (John 1:12; 3:16)

When you begin to look up the scriptures that support your faith, your faith, and confidence in your faith grows. Your witness is more bold. 

Take some time today to bolster one aspect of your faith in Christ. It might be something as simple as why you are a child of God. Find the scriptures that support that truth and go on to the next. 

Why baptism by immersion? Why do you attend the church you do? 

Soon, you will find a growing confidence in your faith and a closeness in your relationship with your Heavenly Father. It will only stop if you do. 

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