Rejoice When Persecuted
Throughout history Satan has attempted to destroy the church in three ways: 1) Persecution 2) Corruption 3) Distraction. All three are found in Acts 4-6. In Acts 5:17-42 Satan once again attacks the church through persecution. The apostles were imprisoned, threatened and flogged (whipped). And, how did the disciples respond? Not the way their persecutors wanted. The apostles “left the high council rejoicing that God has counted them worthy to suffer disgrace for the name of Jesus.” Wow! The apostles rejoiced about their suffering and persecution! Their example and many other believers since remind us that persecution only refines the church, it doesn’t destroy it, and that when we are persecuted for our faith we share in the sufferings of Jesus – we experience suffering just like Jesus our Savior did.