Matthew 7:6 – Do not give what is holy to dogs, and do not throw your pearls before swine, or they will trample them under their feet, and turn and tear you to pieces.

The Jewish people called the Gentiles dogs. We know that there came a time when the Gentiles were accepted and qualified for salvation. Jesus is using the term “dogs” referring to any that reject God’s provision and treat it as a dog might treat a precious possession belonging to his master. What God the Father has given to us is compared to a “pearl.” A swine would not care anything of the pearl’s value. He would just bury it in the mud and slop. Likewise, the swine might turn on you and do you great damage.

Jesus was preparing kingdom-minded people for the reality of the tribulations that lay ahead for those trusting Christ. In our witnessing, we need to use wisdom and not flaunt what Christ has done for us. The conduct of our lives is our real witness to the unsaved. Vocal volume and many words will not bring the lost to Christ. It is our steady and faithful lifestyle that will ultimately convince people of the kingdom of God and create a desire to follow Christ.

Many Christians suffer persecution because they do not follow the counsel which Jesus gives to us in this verse. The Holy Spirit is our guide in witnessing. We cannot hope to be effective without His power and leading. We must learn to hold our counsel as well as share it as the precious Holy Spirit leads. Paul’s witness on Mars Hill gives us valuable lessons regarding receptivity. “Some began to sneer, but others said, we shall hear you again concerning this” (Acts 17:32-34). A third group received the Word of God freely and became disciples of the Lord Jesus Christ.

Be wise as a serpent and harmless as a dove. Ask the Holy Spirit to be your guide, to give you power to proclaim the gospel, and live a consistent Christian witness before all.