"But in your hearts revere Christ as Lord. Always be prepared to give an answer to everyone who asks you to give the reason for the hope that you have. But do this with gentleness and respect,"
-1 Peter 3:15 (NIV)
There are 7 parts to this verse:
- Christ must be Lord in our hearts. We must be completely devoted and “connected” to Him to be able to share our faith effectively and with power. Which other verses in the Bible come to mind concerning this?
John 15:1-5, Acts 1:8, Luke 11:13, 2 Cor. 3:3-8, Matthew 28:20, Ephesians 3:14-19.
In Acts 4:31 the disciples were filled again with the Holy Spirit. I related sharing our Faith without and with the “the Holy Spirit”. Such “Filling of the Holy Spirit” is by Faith and may not be accompanied by extra signs. When the Spirit of God works through us, we will eventually know. Examples: Man screaming for a Bible; The operating room; The nurse; etc.
- Be prepared: How?
What does a runner do before he runs in the Olympics 1 mile race?
How often does he practice? Yes try and try again. Never give up. Have tracts in your pockets.
What must one do when preparing a meal?
Here are some of the ingredients for sharing our Faith. Loving people. Not making ourselves superior to them. We need to pray for the people we want to win to Christ. We need to think about what to say. Think about their earthly interests or occupation and then give a heavenly application. Ask the Holy Spirit to enlighten you and to do the work through you. Examples: A Plummer? He gives us water to live but could have “living waters that shall never run dry.” A Doctor takes care of our physical bodies and of his own physical body. He also needs to deal with the question of His spiritual body being sick and in need of being made well. Can he make his eternal being well? A model depends on her beautiful clothes to impress and to succeed. With God the outer person, the old self is like filthy rags to Him. Isaiah 64:6. He looks at the inner person that must be cleansed . The person then puts on the new clothes that are provided through His Son. )
What do we do before going to work? ( Wash. Would you want to eat from dirty dishes? )
What do we do when asked to give a speech?
( Please practice and think about what you might say. We need to be prepared for this task but the Holy Spirit may change what you say because He knows the other’s person’s needs. Just be sensitive to the Holy Spirit’s leading. )
What do we need to do to give a reason for our hope? ( Use our voices. Our lives must be an example also but there comes a time when we must use our voices. )
- An answer. ( Yes we need to use our voice. Loud? Contentious? Argumentative? Or gentle with respect? )
- To everyone who asks: (Yes including other faiths, our boss, co-workers, fellow students, our families, our neighbors, etc. )
- Give a reason for your hope: The reason for our hope we call our testimony. We need to have a testimony. Here is a simple outline to enable us to give a reasonably short testimony as most people will not listen for long.
Sharing your Story of Hope:
Here is a three minute plan for telling your story – how Jesus gave you hope and what He is doing in your life today:
In 30 Seconds tell what your life was like before you received Jesus:
In 30 Seconds explain what caused you to turn to God:
In 60 Seconds share the circumstances of how you received Jesus into your life:
In 30 Seconds repeat the prayer you prayed to receive Jesus Christ:
In 30 Seconds explain how your life was changed since Jesus became your Lord and Savior:
Try and add a short memorized Bible verse if appropriate and where possible. Satan always tells us after witnessing: “It was all useless.” If God convinced you through a verse of scripture, then add it under the 60 second spot. God promises that His word will not return void. The three minutes is a general guideline. Do not exceed five minutes. There may be exceptions to this guideline where there is more time and people are interested.
- With gentleness: Gentleness shows what?
- And respect: When we have respect for others what is evident in us? When the disciples used to catch fish they avoided making a lot of noise and ruckus. It drives the fish away. People are the same.
What does the Lord mean with fear in the King James version?
Jesus came to save and seek that which is lost. Now He has left the job for us. He sadly asks the Christians in North America where only 1 % witness:
“Why do you call me Lord, Lord and don’t do as I say? I will make you fishers of men if you let me. My heavenly hosts rejoice when one sinner repents and yes, I have great rewards for those who are wise and bring many to repentance. You will shine like the stars."