Introduction: Of all of the people you would like to win to Christ,
which one is most important to you? My bet is that your answer is a
member of your family! Sometimes I observe that people are nicer to
those outside their family then they are to their family. Does that
make any sense? In this lesson we will look at how we can be a
witness to our family, and then consider whether those principles
are the same for personal witnessing to those around us. Let’s jump
into our study of the Bible and see what we can learn!

  1. Attitude Adjustment

    1. Read 1 Peter 2:18-21. Are you and I called to take a
      beating? (That is what the text says! Actually, it says
      we are called to “endure” when we take a beating for
      doing good.)

    2. Read 1 Peter 2:23-24. Why are we called to take a
      beating? (Because Jesus, as our example, took a beating
      for our sins! His wounds healed us.)

    3. Read 1 Peter 3:1-2. What does Peter mean when he says,
      “in the same way?” (Peter is referring to what he had
      just said; slaves should accept beatings because Jesus
      took a beating for us.)

      1. This hits a very open nerve for me (and many
        others). When I hear of a man who beats his wife or
        children, I feel like punching him. Men who beat or
        abuse their wives are despicable worms. If you
        attack someone who cannot fight back, like your
        wife, your children, your employees, your
        subordinates or the wait staff at the restaurant,
        you are a bully. How can Peter suggest that wives
        take a beating?

    4. Let’s look more closely at Jesus, our example, to better
      understand this attitude. Re-read 1 Peter 2:24. Why was
      Jesus beaten? (He bore our sins. He was the Lamb of God.)

      1. Was Jesus regularly being beaten during His life?
        (No. He was only beaten at the end.)

      2. When Peter writes, “in the same way be submissive to
        your husbands,” would this mean enduring regular
        beatings? (No. That is not what Jesus suffered. More
        importantly, Jesus had a very important goal in
        mind, saving us. If a wife took a beating to save
        her husband, then I would see a parallel. But, if a
        wife takes a beating just to be beaten, then this is
        not “in the same way!”)

    5. If Peter is not talking about beatings, what is he
      talking about? (The heart of Jesus’ mission was to give
      Himself up for us. I think that is the attitude which
      Peter is urging. Self-denial.)

    6. Read 1 Peter 3:3-6. With this background, what is Peter
      saying about beauty, jewelry, hairstyles and clothing? (I
      don’t think he is saying very much about what a woman is
      wearing. He is saying true beauty comes from having the
      same attitude towards your husband that Jesus has towards

      1. Notice that Abraham’s wife, Sarah, is mentioned by
        name. What is this text saying about Sarah and
        jewelry? (Read Genesis 24:51-53. If Abraham is
        giving jewelry to his future daughter-in-law, it
        seems unlikely that his wife does not wear jewelry.
        Instead, this confirms that Peter is talking about
        the importance of beauty coming from attitude,
        rather than adornment.)

      2. What might our jewelry say about our attitude
        towards others? (Most of what is called “jewelry” in
        America today is not. It is cheap metal and plastic
        that anyone can afford. However, if you are wearing
        jewels for the purpose of saying that you are better
        than others, this is contrary to Jesus’ attitude of

  2. Personal Family Evangelism

    1. So far we have seen that a wife should witness to her
      husband by having a self-sacrificing attitude. Read 1
      Peter 3:7. What kind of attitude is required from a
      husband who wants to witness to his wife?

      1. Notice that Peter starts out, “in the same way.”
        What same way? (The same way that Jesus gave up His
        life for us. The same way that a wife is unselfish
        with her husband. Husbands have a “same way”

    2. Read Colossians 3:19. What is required of husbands?
      (Peter tells husbands to be considerate and respectful.
      Paul tells them to love their wives. The direction
      against being “harsh,” is clearly a prohibition against
      hitting the wife.)

    3. Read Colossians 3:21 and Ephesians 6:4. What attitude
      should parents have towards their children? (Nothing the
      parent does should make the child bitter or exasperated.
      I think the same kind of self-sacrificing attitude that
      Jesus has towards us is the best evangelism tool for
      members of our family, including our children.)

  3. Personal Community Evangelism

    1. Read 1 Peter 2:11-12. What is important to evangelizing
      the world? (Right living.)

      1. Does this mean that pagans will not charge us with
        wrong-doing? (No. They will make false accusations,
        but we prove them wrong by our deeds.)

    2. Read 1 Peter 2:13-17. What attitude are we to have
      towards the world? (We submit ourselves to authority. We
      show by our lives that God is to be praised.)

    1. As you consider what we have discussed, is there a common
      thread for evangelizing our family and evangelizing the
      world? (Yes! The common thread is self-denial. Your life
      should bless others.)

      1. How does this compare with the attitude of the
        world? (The world pursues self-aggrandizement.
        Christians get the attention of those around them by
        being the opposite of the world. An “opposite” that
        blesses those around you. That nudges them towards
        the reason for your attitude.)

  1. An Example

    1. Read John 1:32-34. John the Baptist is speaking about
      Jesus. What witness does John give about Jesus? (That
      Jesus is the Son of God.)

      1. Is there any self-denial in John’s statement?

    2. Read John 1:35-37. What motivated these two disciples to
      seek to learn more about Jesus? (What John said.)

    3. Read John 1:38-42. What is Andrew’s first priority? (To
      tell a family member about Jesus.)

      1. How does Andrew’s action fit our self-denial
        discussion? (Instead of staying with Jesus longer,
        Andrew seeks out his brother to share the good

    4. Read John 1:43-46. Assume that Nathanael said this about
      your important discovery. What is the self-important
      answer? (To argue with Nathanael to show him that you are
      right. Instead, Philip simply says, “Come and see.”)

    5. Read John 1:47-48. We can assume that Jesus also knew
      what Nathanael said. How would you like it if someone
      said to you “Nothing good comes from your family, town,
      etc?” What kind of self-important response would you

      1. Instead of saying something positive about Himself
        or something negative about Nathanael, what does
        Jesus say? (He compliments Nathanael. Instead of
        thinking of the personal insult, Jesus lifts up
        Nathanael. This is self-denial.)

    6. Read John 1:49. How well does the self-denial approach to
      evangelism work? (Nathanael is immediately converted.)

    7. Read John 1:50-51. Wait a minute! Is Jesus telling us
      that “magic” converted Nathanael instead of self-denial?
      (Jesus approach to Nathanael was to focus on him. “Magic”
      (the power of God) followed and assisted in the

    8. Friend, are you focused on others, or focused on
      yourself? When I perform marriages, I include a line
      from my own marriage ceremony: “Every day wake up and
      say, ‘What can I do today for my spouse?'” Will you ask
      the Holy Spirit to give you the attitude of self-sacrifice, the attitude that will win your family,
      friends and the world to Jesus?

  2. Next week: Corporate Evangelism and Witnessing.