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)
I’ve always liked how this verse tells us to be prepared to give an answer for the reason we have hope, but as I’ve been studying 1 Peter this time around, a couple of things have stuck out to me differently:
All things start with the posture of our hearts. If our hearts are set right before the Lord, honoring Christ as holy, you better believe we will be prepared to give our reason, and it will be seasoned with gentleness and respect. When we love Him, though we have not seen Him (more beautiful words from 1 Peter), we will love others, and they will not catch us off-guard with their questions. So, first, our hearts are bowed low to Him, then prepared for others.
There has to be evidence of hope for others to ask. This verse assumes the hope of believers is showing. Does our hope in Christ shine before men? Is it bigger than our circumstances and trials so that others have to ask of the hope that is in us? If others aren’t asking. It may not be showing. If it’s not showing, go back to the posture of the heart.
And, one last thing, notice the word always…