I live in the United States where I enjoy the constitutional right to practice my religious beliefs and I face very little opposition in serving God. There are many Christians who don’t have this freedom. In the Middle East many Christians run the risk of being killed by Muslim extremists. Persecution of Christians is increasing in China. India is controlled by a Hindu nationalist party whose goal is to make India a completely Hindu nation. According to Open Doors North Korea is the place where Christians suffer the most persecution.
Paul had this to say about the suffering experienced by Christians. Read the rest of this entry
Before his arrest Jesus prayed that if it were possible he might avoid being crucified.
And he came out and went, as was his custom, to the Mount of Olives, and the disciples followed him. And when he came to the place, he said to them, “Pray that you may not enter into temptation.”
And he withdrew from them about a stone’s throw, and knelt down and prayed,saying, “Father, if you are willing, remove this cup from me. Nevertheless, not my will, but yours, be done.”
And there appeared to him an angel from heaven, strengthening him. And being in agony he prayed more earnestly; and his sweat became like great drops of blood falling down to the ground. And when he rose from prayer, he came to the disciples and found them sleeping for sorrow, and he said to them, “Why are you sleeping? Rise and pray that you may not enter into temptation.” (Luke 22:39-46)
He wanted to avoid the crucifixion but he submitted to God’s will and as you know it was God’s will for him to be crucified. Read the rest of this entry
Crucifixion is one of the most painful methods of execution ever devised. Here is an article that describes Christ’s crucifixion and also the suffering he experienced before it.
He knew before his arrest what he would endure. Is it any wonder that he prayed that God would enable him to avoid it if that were possible?
And he withdrew from them about a stone’s throw, and knelt down and prayed, saying, “Father, if you are willing, remove this cup from me. Nevertheless, not my will, but yours, be done.” And there appeared to him an angel from heaven, strengthening him. And being in agony he prayed more earnestly; and his sweat became like great drops of blood falling down to the ground.
He wanted to avoid the pain of being crucified but he wanted even more to do God’s will. His death was the only way human sin could be atoned for, so in the end he submitted to being put to death. Read the rest of this entry
When God tested Job to prove his loyalty three of Job’s friends, Eliphaz the Temanite, Bildad the Shuhite, and Zophar the Naamathite, came to him to comfort him. They assumed that Job’s suffering was the result of some sin he had committed. Eliphaz asked these two questions,
“Who that was innocent ever perished?
Or where were the upright cut off?”
When Eliphaz asked the questions they were unanswerable because Jesus Christ had not yet appeared on earth. Now that he has come we know the answers.
Read the rest of this entry
The stones used in Solomon’s temple were carved at the place from which they were taken, not at the place where the temple was being built.
When the house was built, it was with stone prepared at the quarry, so that neither hammer nor axe nor any tool of iron was heard in the house while it was being built.
1 Kings 6:7
Imagine that these stones were alive. How might they have felt about what was being done to them?