Join us this Sunday! In-Person 9:00am & 10:45am, Online 9:00am, 10:45am & 5:00pm

Join us this Sunday! In-Person 9:00am & 10:45am, Online 9:00am, 10:45am & 5:00pm

Join us at the next Sunday worship service:
9:00am & 10:45am,
Online 9:00am, 10:45am & 5:00pm


“I’m upset because I’m a good person; what they’re saying about me is not true.” it doesn’t matter how good you are, how loving, kind, upstanding; somebody’s not going to like you, is going to try to discredit you. it happened with Jesus. when he was on the earth, he went around healing the sick, lifting the fallen, encouraging those that were down. he did nothing but good, but he was falsely accused, misunderstood. how did he defend himself, protect his reputation?” –  1 Peter 2:22-23.

There is so much going on in the world that temporarily raises our blood pressure. In the middle of a conversation, someone insults you and questions your integrity. Or maybe another believer questions your level of belief or your commitment to the church. Our natural inclination is to vigorously defend ourselves.

We all have people who come against us, make negative comments, try to discredit us, and belittle us. Human nature is to try to straighten them out and prove to them how they’re wrong. We think we have to defend ourselves; that’s our reputation. But the problem with this approach is that as soon as you get one person straightened out, three more will pop up. Somebody will always be against you, trying to make you look bad. If you’re constantly trying to defend yourself, you’ll get distracted fighting battles you were never supposed to.  It’s easy to get baited into conflict, thinking, “Did you see what they said about me on social media? I’m going to show them who they’re messing with.” So, what do we do when we feel the need to defend ourselves? How do we distinguish between defending ourselves and defending Jesus? How do we know when to speak and when to stay silent? Here’s the key: you don’t have to defend yourself; God said He will defend you.

Peter was determined to defend Jesus. When the Roman soldiers and high priests came to arrest Jesus, Peter cut off the ear of the high priest’s servant. But instead of letting Peter defend Him, Jesus said, “Put your sword back into its sheath. Shall I not drink from the cup of suffering the Father has given me” (John 18:11, NIV)?  Fast forward, and we see Peter’s complete transformation. God opened his eyes to see that retaliation against those who wrong us does not serve His purposes. Peter instead gave this command to the church: “Don’t repay evil for evil. Don’t retaliate with insults when people insult you. Instead, pay them back with a blessing. That is what God has called you to do, and he will grant you his blessing” (1 Peter 3:9).

In today’s tense world of instant replies, it has never been easier to react rather than respond with humility and love and let God be our defender.  Every time you are attacked, criticized, put down, or misunderstood, you have two choices: You can defend yourself or let God defend you. Which will it be? Who do you think can do a better job defending you? God can. When we let God take His rightful place as our defender and respond to others in His love, the focus turns to Him. People are drawn to God because they see a part of Him in us.

Psalm 55:22 (GNT) says, “Leave your troubles with the Lord, and he will defend you.”

Discussion Questions:

  1. How have you seen God’s protection in your own life?
  2. In what ways do you need God’s practical protection in your life right now?