“Remember those who are in prison, as though in prison with them, and those who are mistreated, since you also are in the body.” (Hebrews 13:3). For the last three days we have been looking at the value of persecution and how God uses it to accomplish His purposes. Today I want us to take a moment to reflect on those who are suffering for Christ and the gospel as you read this. The above verse makes it clear that we should remember such “as though [we were] in prison [and suffering] with them”. Why should this be the way we think of those suffering for Christ? Because we are connected in the same body with them – the body of Christ.
Paul makes this point again when he says, “If one member suffers, all suffer together; if one member is honored, all rejoice together.” (1 Corinthians 12:26). If we live disconnected lives from the rest of Christ’s body, we will miss the beauty of how God made the church to function together and represent Christ to the world. This is part of “loving one another” just as Christ has loved us (John 13:34). Such ‘connectedness’ sends the world a message about Christ, the author and founder of the church.
How do you “remember” those suffering for Christ? Do you just say a quick prayer for them and pass on to the next item of interest? Or do we ask for the presence of Christ and power of the Holy Spirit to sustain them in the suffering so their witness powerfully impacts their persecutors?
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