Is Defense the Best Offense?
By Teri Gasser
“When He was reviled, He did not revile in return; when He suffered, He did not threaten, but continued entrusting Himself to Him who judges justly.” 1 Peter 2:23
Nothing stings like a false accusation and slander. When we’re hurt without a cause our hearts cry, “It’s not fair!” We want justice.
Our response to accusations and threats reveal where our trust lies.
It’s a good thing I’m not God. I’d counterattack. “I’ll show you!” and—bam—to hell they’d go! But that’s not how He reacted.
Jesus never retaliated.
Jesus anticipated rejection. He felt no need to justify or explain Himself because He knew Who He was and Whose He was. His identity freed Him to graciously ignore His enemies’ insults.
He trusted His Father’s defense, and we should, too.
As children of God, we have ready access to His perfect wisdom. We see the world from a different perspective than those who don’t have a personal relationship with Him. When we become defensive at other’s lack of understanding, we inflame their hatred and potentially push them further from Christ.
But we don’t need to defend ourselves because Jesus intercedes for us, and God alone is our judge. Nor do we need to defend God. He’s capable of defending Himself. Instead, we can play offence by loving—with the unflappable, non-defensive, confident love of God.
Who might God be asking you to show this kind of love to? Rest in the reality that the Judge of all the earth knows you and loves you completely. Focus on listening to and obeying Him and trust Him to take care of everyone and everything else.
Like Ezra, Teri Gasser has a “heart to study the Law of the Lord, and to do it and to teach his statutes. . .” (Ezra 7:10, esv). She’s been married over thirty years, has four grown children, and adores her grandchildren. Her passion is to see women transformed by truth. Teri Gasser serves as the Director of Women’s Bible Studies at Grace Baptist Church in Manhattan, Kansas. She’s also a pastor’s wife, Bible study leader, speaker, and writer. She hopes to have her first book published soon. Visit her online at terigasser.com.
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Originally published Friday, 13 May 2022.