The church is experiencing persecution today. But persecution by the world against the church has never stopped since the time of the apostles. There has always been persecution, and there always will be persecution until Christ returns. Paul wrote: "lndeed, all who desire to live a godly life in Christ Jesus will be persecuted" (2 Timothy 3:12).
Persecution varies from place to place and from person to person. Sometimes it is nothing more than simply a social rejection, or a word of criticism against us because we are Christ-followers. Othertimes and in other places it has been intense, putting to death thousands. According to researchers from Open Doors, 11 Christians are killed every day somewhere in this world for their faith in Christ.
When we study the persecuted church, we also find men and women who possess a profound faith, who were brave, committed, and willing to lay down their lives for the sake of Christ. For them, Christianity was not merely an idea, not merely a social convention, not merely a heritage handed down to them. Rather, Christianity was deep and personal, and they had an intimate relationship with God through Christ.
ln the persecuted church, wherever we find it, whether in Acts, or in Pakistan, or wherever else, we find men and women who become our heroes, whose faith is pure and whose commitment is complete. These are people worth knowing.