Today while reading from 1 Peter in the Bible, a verse jumped out at me and made me remember what I had seen in earlier days of my Christian walk.
… but in your hearts honor 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; yet do it with gentleness and respect, … ~ 1 Peter 3:15
A few years ago I was disturbed by videos I had watched that seemed to take on more significance to me. When it comes to spreading the Word of God, seeing those videos of one or two people holding signs, “Repent”, and things like that on sidewalks, and shouting out that you “will go to hell” if you do not repent of your sin and believe in the Lord Jesus Christ now.
Firstly, in these videos, no passersby nor traffic have asked them to share their reasons why they believe in Jesus as Lord. While people drive by, going about their business, they weren’t seeking answers nor seeking Christ. Why would these demonstrators impose their beliefs on someone this way? These “Jesus followers” open themselves up to ridicule, and by the way they act, I was bothered by them enough to think along those same lines. And it was embarrassing. Jesus never acted that way.
Anyway, these videos proudly showed how, in my opinion, these demonstrators “carried the message” for their own self-aggrandizement, and have bothered me for some time. I knew something felt wrong, and I didn’t know why.
No, not exactly why. So secondly, and perhaps even more importantly, I felt their demonstrating was a harsh way of sharing Jesus and presented him as a form of a wrathful, evil person. Jesus is not Satan.
People who share the gospel in this way really don’t have an understanding of Jesus’ message. He does not want us to harshly judge people who are of the world, but to share in love, with quiet understanding, believing in him to do the miracle of sharing His love in someone’s heart in His way.
Loving, tenderness, kindness are the key. No one wants to believe in a God who sends them to hell.
Jesus said, “I did not come to judge the world but to save the world.”
If anyone hears my words and does not keep them, I do not judge him; for I did not come to judge the world but to save the world. ~ John 12:47
Let’s give our Lord and Savior the honorable place in our lives. Be loving and do good works for people.