In a recent social media exchange, I was part of a discussion that arose in response to a posting of the identification of a number of celebrity atheists. There were various opinions offered regarding the celebrities' atheistic stances, with some answers displaying more energy than others. At one point in the discussion, when a few criticisms were presented in opposition to theistic world view, I felt compelled to respond. My response was largely guided by 1 Peter 3:15b which states:
"...sanctify Christ as Lord in your hearts, always ready to make a defense to everyone who asks you to give an account for the hope that is in you, yet with gentleness and reverence..."
After taking the time to allow that verse to soak in my soul for a bit, I responded as follows (with a few edits added in):
No life view should be judged on the basis of its worst representatives but rather on the actual tenets of the faith that define it. I am
unashamedly a Jesus Follower. The bottom line definition of the faith to which I subscribe
based on my understanding of Scripture is this: I, Samuel D. Jackson, am an
imperfect sinner who by necessity has been exposed to God's redeeming love and transformed by
it. I am an undeserving recipient of God's wonderful forgiveness and grace
which He calls me to consistently and enthusiastically extend to others in love and service. When I face The Lord on the great and terrible day of my passing, I will stand before Him in and by his grace alone. If by chance
when my day comes and contrary to the faith to which I cling, I find that all that awaits is an empty vacuum of nothing, I do not count my present endeavors as worthless. I yet see the enterprise to which I have devoted my life as a valuable endeavor of time well spent - an enterprise where I have sought to make the visible daily existence of
others with whom my path crosses just a little better than before my involvement was enjoined. For these reasons I joyfully and and confidently press on in faith at peace with myself, with others (whether they agree with me or not) and with my God!