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The Early Church experienced a great deal of persecution. While persecution was brutal and fatal, it served a vital purpose in helping the early church come to realize the importance of defining its faith based on its doctrinal beliefs. The purpose of this paper is to discuss how general persecution, to some degree, is a motivator to keep true purity and conviction in the church. Generally people do not die for what they do not believe in.
Even today, Christians are still being persecuted. Just recently, in Afghanistan, 10 believers were arrested for sharing their faith and of this date they are still in prison and face the real possibility of death. In the Sudan, Christians have been frequently harassed, family members have been kidnapped, and many have been sold into slavery or died under the butchery of those who disagreed with them. In China, Bible based churches often are forced to worship to worship underground, behind closed doors. In some parts of this world,
When we evade hardships, persecutions, or criticisms we are in effect distancing ourselves from identifying with all aspects of Christ. A part of growing into a useful servant is enduring the suffering, shame, and indignities that Jesus went through. This process is meant for our benefit to produce greater maturity, godliness, and insight into His will for our lives. Job said, "When I am tried I will come forth as gold." We too need to have this optimistic outlook for the stresses that we face as this will h...