Memory Text: Our hope for you is unshaken, for we know that as you share in our sufferings, you will also share in our comfort. (2 Corinthians 1:7, ESV)
Throughout history, nameless millions willingly sacrificed their lives for Christ. They were imprisoned, tortured, even executed. Millions have foregone employment, suffered ridicule, endured expulsion from family, and persevered through religious persecution rather than forsake Christ. Only God knows the full extent of the suffering that His faithful ones have endured.
Of course, Paul forewarned,
Indeed, all who desire to live a godly life in Christ Jesus will be persecuted (2 Tim. 3:12, ESV). And Peter said:
For to this you have been called, because Christ also suffered for you, leaving you an example, so that you might follow in his steps (1 Pet. 2:21, ESV).
Despite the promises of the so-called
prosperity preachers, luxurious automobiles and financial gain are not automatic embellishments afforded to believers.
In the end, we can be sure that whatever the cost of discipleship is, considering the ultimate reward, that cost is cheap enough.