We live in interesting times. Around the world, attacks against Christians have doubled in recent years.1 In the United States, Christian values are often shouted down on campuses and in the virtual public square. Small businesses are sued because they refuse to engage in activities that violate their faith. Here is Dr. James Emery White’s reflection: “In current American culture, you are free to be a Christian as long as you don’t actually live out your faith, vote your faith, take a stand in relation to your faith, or believe others should embrace your faith.”2 He wrote that nine years ago. It is even more true today.
So, how should we respond in an increasingly hostile culture? Do we demand our rights? Do we agitate for change? Do we shout out our convictions? No, we use gentleness, sometimes called meekness. We respond without fear, but we make sure we are not harsh in our response. Here’s how Peter said it in 1 Peter 3:15-16, “But in your hearts set apart 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, keeping a clear conscience, so that those who speak maliciously against your good behavior in Christ may be ashamed of their slander.”
May God’s Spirit make us more gentle — more meek — each day!
- Christopher Vondracek, “Attacks on Christians double since 2017,” The Washington Time, April 22, 2019, https://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2019/apr/22/attacks-christians-double-2017/.
- Dr. James Emery White, “Are Christians in America Under Attack?” Crosswalk.com, February 23, 2012, https://www.crosswalk.com/blogs/dr-james-emery-white/are-christians-in-america-under-attack.html
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