In Case of Emergency…
I have a book entitled The Worst-Case Scenario Survival Handbook.
With it you can prepare for all sorts of sticky situations like Escaping from Quicksand or Delivering a Baby in a Taxicab.
If you are facing off with a charging bull, here’s what you have to know to be prepared: 1) Take off your shirt 2) When the bull charges at you, throw the shirt as far away as possible. Hopefully this will distract the bull.
The people who first read what we call 1 Peter chapter 3 verses 8 through 18 weren’t facing a charging bull, but they were in a sticky situation.
It’d been decades since Easter, and the glow of Jesus rising from the dead had faded a bit.
What hadn’t faded was pressure from people outside the community toward those who put their trust in Jesus. Surely people were saying to 1 Peter’s first readers, “Why don’t you honor the national gods anymore? Why don’t you salute the flags of money, sex, and power all the upstanding citizens worship?” Promotions were missed. Friends lost. Perhaps some disciples of Jesus had been jailed or worse.
So, a little like the survival book, 1 Peter 3:8-18 tries to prepare them. Oddly, Peter doesn’t say hide or trade insults and abuse.
Peter asks them to prepare by seeking deep agreement with one another. He asks them to feel each other’s pain and joy. He teaches them not to act as if they’re ten feet tall looking down on everyone else. Instead, he calls them to be humble.
He asks them to cultivate gentleness and respect for those who question them. He challenges them to know Jesus and themselves well enough that they can always give a reason for the hope that’s within them.
That’s still a good word today.