How easily we can overlook our own ability to bring the Word of God to bear in our daily interactions. What if we thought more deeply about our beliefs, responsibilities, and everyday choices as we dwell together before a watching world? We are resident foreigners with an eternal citizenship in heaven (1 Peter 2:11). Remembering this divine reality changes the way we interact on earth. Imagine how mighty a witness we would be as countless thousands of Christians deploy into the culture every single day with one visual in mind: We are a city on a hill.
Let’s not be surprised. The world is a dark place, and attacks on Christianity by our culture are in abundant supply. A quick scroll through your social media feed or a fifteen-minute segment of the evening news will prove that. While some might say, “It’s worse than ever!” we must admit that somewhere in the world it’s always been like this. Jesus put it this way when preparing His own disciples for His departure: “In this world you will have tribulation” (John 16:33).
As Christians, it’s more than likely that our faith in Christ will bring us attacks, slander, workplace discrimination, and the loss of friends and opportunities. In the midst of such treatment, there is a temptation to fight fire with fire. But what if we saw times like these as a great opportunity to be a witness? What if our most powerful witness was found in using weapons of warfare that look nothing like the culture’s? As Christians, we are the light of the world. We are a city on a hill (Matt. 5:14). But how can light be light when it looks like the darkness?
The Apostle Paul was no stranger to trouble and dealing with difficult people, yet he continued to encourage the church to preserve its witness in the midst of a wicked culture. “Walk in wisdom toward outsiders, making the best use of time. Let your speech always be gracious, seasoned with salt, so that you may know how you ought to answer each person” (Col. 4:5–7). These words were penned by the same Paul who was slandered by false teachers and had his integrity questioned in Corinth (2 Cor. 10–11). Yet, Paul continued to make every effort to guard his witness by proclaiming the truth and walking with integrity. His heart was wide open to the church (6:11), he exemplified his own words to “owe no one anything” but to love others (Rom. 13:8), and he poured his life out as a drink offering (2 Tim. 4:6). He was a wonderful example of truth and integrity. How can we maintain our witness in today’s culture? By reflecting the character of Him to whom we bear witness.
The enemy’s strategy has not changed. Darkness will stop at nothing in tempting you to behave like the world in times like these.