When Not To Witness
June 22, 2012
Read: Matthew 26:57-64
Jesus kept silent. And the high priest answered and said to Him, “. . . Tell us if You are the Christ, the Son of God!” —Matthew 26:63
Here in New England where I live, baseball is a near-religious pursuit. Even if it were against the law to talk about the Boston Red Sox while at work, the fans couldn’t stop—they love their team that much.
That raises a question in my mind for Christians: Are there times when a Christian shouldn’t talk about God? I think so. In the face of insincere challenges to our faith, silence may often be the best response. In the hostile situation of Jesus’ exchange with Caiaphas, He chose silence at first (Matt. 26:63). He understood that Caiaphas wasn’t interested in the truth (v.59). While we don’t always know another’s heart, we must be sensitive to the leading of the Spirit in every situation that we “may know how [we] ought to answer each one” (Col. 4:6).
Also, if an answer to a question will move the discussion down a rabbit trail and away from Christ, we might want to stop the conversation and pick it up another day.
Are there other times when silence may be best? If talking about faith distracts us or co-workers from performing our job, we should stay focused on our work. Or if someone has shown a continual resistance, we might choose to stop pressing them. Remember, we can be a witness of God’s grace with our conduct as well (1 Peter 3:1-2).
Dear Lord, we want to be a testimony for You.
Give us wisdom to know when to speak or not speak,
and what to say or not say. Thank You, Holy Spirit,
for Your direction today.
Silence can be one tool in evangelism.