This is a follow-up to another post of mine titled, Fighting Words. As a follower of Christ, you will come up against a lot of criticism and negativity about your faith in Christ. This is nothing new, you have probably heard of this before. What I want to highlight in this post is how to stand your ground.I would encourage you to read John 8 before going forward. Go ahead, I'll wait here.
So, I have been there. I have had someone mock my faith in Christ. I have heard it said that if you haven't been persecuted or ridiculed for you faith in Christ then you should look at how you are living. In other words, it's not a matter of if, it is a matter of when. I have believed in Christ for 25 years and I to this day still struggle with standing my ground. I know I believe and why I believe, but have never been good at defending my faith.
First and foremost by nature I am not a confrontational person. Just the opposite, I avoid it as much as possible. So the topic of standing my ground peaked my interest as I read through this passage.
Let me give you some context. It is early, Jesus is in the temple courts. He has just come down from the mountains, specifically the Mount of Olives. The Pharisees are doing everything they can to trap Jesus in a corner. They need some reason to accuse Jesus.
Jesus stands firm and does not back down in a way I have never seen. He does not talk trash or get worked up like most humans would. He stays calm, speaks confidently, and does not back down. His words are bold, but not tacky. He speaks without doubt.
I love how Jesus confronts the Pharisees in John 8:43. "Why is my language not clear to you? Because you are unable to hear what I say." Take a look at a clip from Rush Hour with Chris Tucker and Jackie Chan.
I believe this would be today's translation. The Pharisees have nothing left to say. Jesus has put them in a corner. They can either believe in Him and what He says or deny Him. Take a look at what happens in John 8:59. Jesus stands his ground by speaking truth and gives them a choice. When He sees there is no reasoning with the Pharisees, he leaves.