The saints, now and at all times have suffered violence at the hands of the world. The blood of the innocent, beginning with Abel, has flowed. God has allowed the righteous to suffer—even his own Son had no place to lay his head while here—and it is still that way.
“Whoever will be my disciple,” Christ said, “must forsake the world. To become pure in heart he must hate his own life and give up everything he owns, even placing his children, his wife, and his own body on the draw.”
“The one that rejects my cross,” Christ says, “is not worthy of me and cannot be my disciple. Ashamed to confess me before me, I will be ashamed of him before God. But the one that leaves his life for my sake will wake up to life after death.”
To believe in Christ is not enough. Rather, we must suffer for the sake of his Word. Only those willing to suffer shall enter eternal joy with him.
Take the right road and the prize will be yours! That is the troublesome road that Jesus walked. Through great tribulation, through the valley of sorrow, we find our way into the Kingdom of God.
Christ Jesus is the head. We are members of his body and partakers with him of pain, distress, and death. But the one that dies with him will live with him as well.
Then, in his kingdom established, his followers receive the crown of life. God will give them all they need. They will exult in glorious freedom with their enemies under their feet.
Lord, hear the prayers of your children in distress and come to their rescue soon!
anonymous Anabaptist writer, 16’th century, Europe