1 Peter 3:13-17          Be Ready, Correctly

Somewhere, in all our “political correctness” and “tolerance” we have forgotten that other people think and live differently that we do as Christians.

We think that because we have the “Biblical High Ground” we have the right to force others to believe and live like we say they should.

The reality is that there are no Christians who “Live Up to the Hype” of a fully Biblical Lifestyle.  We have all failed.

And using our Sacred and Holy Bible to beat others up while we hide from our own transgressions is morally and Biblically wrong.

We need to pay WAY MORE ATTENTION to the plank in our own eyes and way less time pointing fingers at others.

Listen again to the fuller text of our VBS Scripture:

1 Peter 3:13-17 “Nowwho is there to harm you if you are zealous for what is good? 14  But even if you should suffer for righteousness’ sake, you will be blessed.Have no fear of them,nor be troubled, 15 butin your hearts regard Christ the Lord as holy,always being prepared to make a defense to anyone who asks you for a reason for the hope that is in you; 16 yet do it with gentleness andrespect,having a good conscience, so that,when you are slandered, those who revile your good behavior in Christ may be put to shame. 17 Forit is better to suffer for doing good, if that should be God’s will, than for doing evil.”  ESV

  •  Should we stand firm on the Word of God!  YES!  CORRECTLY
  • Should we life up the Word as pour path to a righteous life?  YES!  Correctly.
  • Can you FORCE someone to believe with protest signs and shouts of hate?  NO!
  1. Be Ready to give a defense for the HOPE that is in you.
    1. Faith, Hope and Love is all we really have
      1. All three are eternal
      2. All three are given by God
      3. Remember the text?
        1. The GREATEST of these is:…LOVE
      4. Be Ready, CORRECTLY
        1. Be Assured – Discover
          1. Not Tearful
          2. Not Troubled
          3. Not worried about suffering
        2. Be on Target – Decide
          1. To honor Christ
          2. To Glorify God
          3. To share HIS GOSPEL
        3. LIVE the HOPE of God that is in you – Defend
          1. With GENTLENESS
          2. With RESPECT
          3. Having a GOOD CONSCIENCE
          4. Good REPUTATION
            1. You cannot lead anyone to LOVE through HATE
            2. You cannot show people Jesus by acting like the devil.
            3. You can never hope to lead someone to Christ if you start by condemning them to hell.
              1. They need to understand their need for God
              2. They need to understand that God’s love is available to them
            4. John 3:16-20 “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life.  For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but in order that the world might be saved through him.  Whoever believes in him is not condemned, but whoever does not believe is condemned already, because he has not believed in the name of the only Son of God. And this is the judgment: the light has come into the world, and people loved the darkness rather than the light because their deeds were evil.”   ESV