If you believe in something strongly and stand for it come-what-may it’ a fact that life wont be easy for you. You gotta be ready to stare death in the face – stare at humiliation, opposition, resistance and mockery eyeball to eyeball. I wonder if I have the strength and the guts and the courage to do that for something I believe in. Will my faith stand strong – or will it break like a dry twig? If I wanna make a difference….. I gotta be more strong…. till the end.
This is how the apostles stood….. till their ends!
Matthew Suffered martyrdom in Ethiopia, killed by a sword wound.
Mark Died in Alexandria, Egypt, after being dragged by horses through the streets until he was dead.
Luke- was hanged in Greece as a result of his tremendous preaching to the lost.
John Faced martyrdom when he was boiled in huge basin of boiling oil during a wave of persecution in Rome. However, he was miraculously delivered from death. John was then sentenced to the mines on the prison island of Patmos. He wrote his prophetic Book of Revelation on Patmos. The apostle John was later freed and returned to serve as Bishop of Edessa in modern Turkey. He died as an old man, the only apostle to die peacefully.
Peter was crucified upside down on an x-shaped cross. According to church tradition it was because he told his tormentors that he felt unworthy to die in the same way that Jesus Christ had died.
James, Just The leader of the church in Jerusalem, was thrown over a hundred feet down from the southeast pinnacle of the Temple when he refused to deny his faith in Christ. When they discovered that he survived the fall, his enemies beat James to death with a fuller’s club. * This was the same pinnacle where Satan had taken Jesus during the Temptation.
James the Great, son of Zebedee, was a fisherman by trade when Jesus called him to a lifetime of ministry. As a strong leader of the church, James was ultimately beheaded at Jerusalem. The Roman officer who guarded James watched amazed as James defended his faith at his trial. Later, the officer walked beside James to the place of execution. Overcome by conviction, he declared his new faith to the judge and knelt beside James to accept beheading as a Christian.
Bartholomew also known as Nathaniel Was a missionary to Asia. He witnessed for our Lord in present day Turkey . Bartholomew was martyred for his preaching in Armenia where he was flayed to death by a whip.
Andrew was crucified on an x-shaped cross in Patras, Greece. After being whipped severely by seven soldiers they tied his body to the cross with cords to prolong his agony. His followers reported that, when he was led toward the cross, Andrew saluted it in these words: “I have long desired and expected this happy hour. The cross has been consecrated by the body of Christ hanging on it.” He continued to preach to his tormentors for two days until he expired.
Thomas Was stabbed with a spear in India during one of his missionary trips to establish the church in the sub-continent.
Jude, Was killed with arrows when he refused to deny his faith in Christ.
Matthias The apostle chosen to replace the traitor Judas Iscariot, was stoned and then beheaded.
Barnabas One of the group of seventy disciples, wrote the Epistle of Barnabas. He preached throughout Italy and Cyprus . Barnabas was stoned to death at Salonica.
Paul Was tortured and then beheaded by the evil Emperor Nero at Rome in A.D. 67… Paul endured a lengthy imprisonment which allowed him to write his many epistles to the churches he had formed throughout the Roman Empire .. These letters, which taught many of the foundational doctrines of Christianity, form a large portion of the New Testament.
This is a grim reminder that those closest to God will face the worst…. they will also receive the greatesest strength….. and they will also make the biggest difference in the world they live in.
But he that endureth to the end shall be saved. — Matthew 10:22.