Pastor Mark Willey
To begin a new series today we're going to be focusing on a series called conversations about God the church and Christianity and our text is found from this passage. This will be the text that is sort of the Foundation for the series in verse 15 in particular First Peter 3 Verse 13 through 17. Here's what we read. Who is going to harm you if you are eager to do good. But even if you should suffer for what is right you are blessed. Do not fear their threats do not be frightened but in your hearts revere Christ as Lord. Always be prepared to give an answer to everyone who ask 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 for it is better if it is God's will to suffer for doing good than for doing evil.
Let's pray. Lord I ask that your spirit would move among us this morning. God this series is one I am excited about and yet I recognize the real need of your spirit to be at its center. We need you to be our teacher our guide. God help us to apply the principles of this verse where it talks about giving a reason for the hope that is in us with gentleness and respect. God lead us as we look at some challenging questions in the weeks to come. Some controversial ones certainly Lord direct us.
May we have teachable spirits even today in Jesus name Amen. A.
Number of years in a row I went into a public high school in our area had the chance to go in as a part of a clergy team. We went in individually to speak to the senior health classes and the senior health classes. Basically you had the option you could do it for two days in a row because there were eight classes that you could take all eight in one shot. I tried both ways. It was a tremendously enjoyable experience spiritually refreshing mentally emotionally exhausting. I had the chance to meet with every senior in the school in those classes and it was a forum where I was at. It was one of those ampitheater type classes where everybody is up above and you're down at the bottom and it did feel a little like the Roman Forum at times. But I remember the time I was introduced one time in particular by one of the young women that was a part of the department.
And she introduced me this way and Kate and I had all different kinds of clergy come in. We were assigned to come in and talk on the subject of family. Our views on family marriage and moral issues and there was a Muslim E-Man that came in Jewish rabbi that came in Catholic priest that came in Protestant by their expression more mainline liberal perspectives. I was the token conservative Protestant evangelical that came in and I came in and I remember this this very pleasant young teacher was introducing me and she said to the kids she says you may always have wondered what an evangelical pastor is. I've always wondered. We have one today. It was I really felt like she was saying we have a pygmy from western Africa who's going to be our show and tell today and here he is. And it struck me and the experience bore this out just the confusion of what a pastor and what an Evangelical is today we'll look at that again in a little while.