Persecution & Suffering: 17

In 1 Thessalonians 2:14-15 Paul says, “For you, brothers and sisters, became imitators of God’s churches in Judea, which are in Christ Jesus: You suffered from your own people the same things those churches suffered from the Jews who killed the Lord Jesus and the prophets and also drove us out. They displease God and are hostile to everyone.”

We see from this that one’s example in experiencing persecution and in responding to suffering are of value and encouragement for other followers of Christ who are undergoing the same. God’s people in the churches of Judea provided a model for the churches in Thessalonica in this regard.

Our suffering and our response to it, then, helps equip other believers. We can prepare them and support them in their future suffering by responding appropriately to our current suffering. We can give them solace and hope. Indeed, we can do this for all subsequent generations. Thus, our present suffering can have a cascading benefit for God’s people if we face it well.