“…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, having a good conscience, so that, when you are slandered, those who revile your good behavior in Christ may be put to shame.” 1Peter 3:15-16 (ESV)
Christians during the time of the Apostle Peter faced severe persecution. Part of the bad treatment that the believers experienced was the persecutors demanding an explanation for their positive outlook. It was kind of like the accusers grilling the accused in a courtroom.
Peter encouraged them to prepare to meet those persecutors head-on. He reminded them, however, to make a defense (“apologia” in New Testament Greek) of the faith calmly, knowing that the Lord is their strength.
We 21st century believers could find ourselves in a similar situation. As we get connected globally, we get to hear challenges to our faith coming from many different directions. But we should not forget the apostle’s reminder: be prepared to defend our faith. We should give a reason for the hope that we have.
One good book that will help us to do just that is God’s Not Dead by Rice Broocks. In this book, the author gives evidences why the atheists are wrong to think that God does not exist. In fact, Broocks points out that our faith is one that has solid basis.
God’s existence is very obvious because of the beauty of the creation. Can we say that the Monalisa came to exist without a painter? It is just logical to believe that every masterpiece is a product of an intelligent maker.
Faith is not blind. But atheism has yet to answer questions concerning issues they have predetermined as favorable to their ideology.
We can ask the nagging questions: if evolution is true, how did non-living things give life to living things? If man is merely a form of animal, why are humans so different from animals as the former have creativity, morality, language, and spiritual hunger?
Broocks cited many logical proofs of God’s existence. Still, the strongest argument for this are the stories of the lives changed by the power of the gospel. People are given hope, meaning, and purpose because of the finished work of Christ. Included are former atheists who are now radical believers.
Furthermore, as lives are changed, societies will change too. In fact, because of the Christian faith, we are now living in a better world. Slaves were given freedom. Women were brought to equality with men. Orphanages were invented to care for abandoned children. And many more.
After I finished reading the book, I prayed that the Lord God will raise an army of Christians who will be ready to make a defense of their faith as they are ready to minister. The Christian faith is neither blind nor passive. It is resting on solid evidence that God is not dead.