1 Peter 3:14-17
But and if you suffer for righteousness' sake, happy are you: and be not afraid of their terror, neither be troubled;…
Observe, they are not required to be always disputing about their hope, or obtruding it upon others, without regard to the proprieties of time, place, and person, but to "be ready" in their own clear apprehension of the subject, and ready also in a loving concern for the guidance and salvation of others; "ready always" on the humblest occasions, as well as the more public and formal; ready in the house, and by the wayside, and amidst the ordinary businesses of life, no less than when brought before the kings and judges of the earth; "ready always for an answer," apology, vindication, defence, as when Paul spoke for himself on the temple stairs and before Agrippa's throne; but, so far from waiting for rare opportunities of that sort, "be ready always for an answer to every one," rich or poor, learned or unlearned, "Greek or Jew, Barbarian, Scythian, bond or free"; what you have to say is of equal moment to one as to another, and they have all an equal claim on your benevolence; "to every one," therefore, "that asketh of you," and so manifests a degree of interest, greater or less, and howsoever awakened, in the topic so dear to yourselves; "that asketh of you," not merely "a reason of," but, in general, an account of, a statement concerning, "the hope that is in you," its nature, ground, object, and influences. Tell him how you, too, like your heathen neighbours, were lately living without hope in the world — with no hope for eternity. Then speak to him of "God our Savior, and Lord Jesus Christ, our hope." Open to him the glorious mystery of His person, and work, and death, and resurrection, and ascension. Explain to him, moreover, your own personal interest in all this through your living union by faith with this blessed Son of God, the world's Redeemer, and the consequent indwelling and gracious witness of His Spirit with your spirit.
(J. Lillie, D. D.)
Parallel VersesKJV: But and if ye suffer for righteousness' sake, happy are ye: and be not afraid of their terror, neither be troubled;