The church is being persecuted all over the world, and you may not even know it. Churches are regularly burned in Nigeria. Christians are being drugged out in the city square in a place like Pakistan and beaten by the crowds. There are brothers and sisters in Christ who are being persecuted for their faith. Paul was familiar with this and gives us some insight.
“To this present hour we are both hungry and thirsty, and are poorly clothed, and are roughly treated, and are homeless; and we toil, working with our own hands; when we are reviled, we bless; when we are persecuted, we endure; when we are slandered, we try to conciliate; we have become as the scum of the world, the dregs of all things, even until now.”
No Easy Life
Paul didn’t live an easy life. His ministry was one trial after another. If people inside the church weren’t attacking him, he was being attacked by Jews or Romans who found him a threat. His response to all of them? To pray for and bless them. Paul was willing to suffer and deny himself so that the Gospel of Jesus could be preached to people like the Corinthians.
This list Paul compiles here isn’t for the faint at heart. Most ministers won’t experience many of these, but they will experience some of them. Paul was a missionary going into areas where Jesus had never been heard and was hostile to its message. Most ministers preach to people who have already heard the Gospel and are familiar with Christianity.
Persecuted for Their Faith
How do you deal with being persecuted for your faith? The most important thing you can do is to stand firm in your faith. Jesus said that if you follow Him, you endure hardships. Don’t run away from the conflict, but lean into it. Let the Spirit strengthen you. Consider it an honor to suffer for your faith.