Matthew 5:10 Blessed are they which are persecuted for righteousness’ sake: for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. 5:11 Blessed are ye, when men shall revile you, and persecute you, and shall say all manner of evil against you falsely, for my sake. 5:12 Rejoice, and be exceeding glad: for great is your reward in heaven: for so persecuted they the prophets which were before you.
Luke 6:22 Blessed are ye, when men shall hate you, and when they shall separate you from their company, and shall reproach you, and cast out your name as evil, for the Son of man’s sake. 6:23 Rejoice ye in that day, and leap for joy: for, behold, your reward is great in heaven: for in the like manner did their fathers unto the prophets.
1 Peter 4:12 Beloved, think it not strange concerning the fiery trial which is to try you, as though some strange thing happened unto you: 4:13 But rejoice, inasmuch as ye are partakers of Christ’s sufferings; that, when his glory shall be revealed, ye may be glad also with exceeding joy.
4:14 If ye be reproached for the name of Christ, happy are ye; for the spirit of glory and of God resteth upon you: on their part he is evil spoken of, but on your part he is glorified. 4:15 But let none of you suffer as a murderer, or as a thief, or as an evildoer, or as a busybody in other men’s matters. 4:16 Yet if any man suffer as a Christian, let him not be ashamed; but let him glorify God on this behalf.
1 Peter 4:17 For the time is come that judgment must begin at the house of God: and if it first begin at us, what shall the end be of them that obey not the gospel of God? 4:18 And if the righteous scarcely be saved, where shall the ungodly and the sinner appear? 4:19 Wherefore let them that suffer according to the will of God commit the keeping of their souls to him in well doing, as unto a faithful Creator.
How to Stand Firm Under Persecution
The only way in which men will be able to stand firm in the conflict is to be rooted and grounded in Christ. They must receive the truth as it is in Jesus. And it is only as the truth is presented thus that it can meet the wants of the soul. The preaching of Christ crucified, Christ our righteousness, is what satisfies the soul’s hunger. When we secure the interest of the people in this great central truth, faith and hope and courage come to the heart.—General Conference Daily Bulletin, January 28, 1893. LDE 151.1
Many, because of their faith, will be cut off from house and heritage here, but if they will give their hearts to Christ, receiving the message of His grace, and resting upon their Substitute and Surety, even the Son of God, they may still be filled with joy.—The Signs of the Times, June 2, 1898. LDE 151.2
Persecution Scatters God’s People
As enmity is aroused in various places against those who observe the Sabbath of the Lord, it may become necessary for God’s people to move from those places to places where they will not be so bitterly opposed. LDE 151.3
God does not require His children to remain where, by the course of wicked men, their influence is made of no effect and their lives endangered. When liberty and life are imperiled it is not merely our privilege, it is our positive duty to go to places where the people are willing to hear the Word of life and where the opportunities for preaching the Word will be more favorable.—Ms 26, 1904. LDE 151.4
The time is soon coming when God’s people, because of persecution, will be scattered in many countries. Those who have received an all-round education will have the advantage where they are.—Manuscript Releases 5:280 (1908). LDE 152.1
Persecution Leads to Unity Among God’s People
When the storm of persecution really breaks upon us, the true sheep will hear the true Shepherd’s voice. Self-denying efforts will be put forth to save the lost, and many who have strayed from the fold will come back to follow the great Shepherd. The people of God will draw together and present to the enemy a united front. In view of the common peril strife for supremacy will cease, there will be no disputing as to who shall be accounted greatest.—Testimonies for the Church 6:401 (1900). LDE 152.2
A Crisis Makes God’s Interference More Marked
From time to time the Lord has made known His manner of working. He is mindful of what is passing upon the earth. And when a crisis has come, He has revealed Himself and has interposed to hinder the working of Satan’s plans. He has often permitted matters with nations, with families, and with individuals to come to a crisis that His interference might become marked. Then He has let the fact be known that there was a God in Israel who would sustain and vindicate His people. LDE 152.3
When the defiance of the law of Jehovah shall be almost universal, when His people shall be pressed in affliction by their fellow men, God will interpose. The fervent prayers of His people will be answered, for He loves to have His people seek Him with all their heart and depend upon Him as their Deliverer.—The Review and Herald, June 15, 1897. LDE 153.1
For a time the oppressors will be permitted to triumph over those who know God’s holy commandments…. To the last, God permits Satan to reveal his character as a liar, an accuser, and a murderer. Thus the final triumph of His people is made more marked, more glorious, more full and complete.—Selected Messages 3:414 (1904). LDE 153.2
Affliction Purifies God’s People
Soon there is to be trouble all over the world. It becomes everyone to seek to know God. We have no time to delay…. LDE 153.3
God’s love for His church is infinite. His care over His heritage is unceasing. He suffers no affliction to come upon the church but such as is essential for her purification, her present and eternal good. He will purify His church even as He purified the temple at the beginning and close of His ministry on earth. All that He brings upon the church in test and trial comes that His people may gain deeper piety and more strength to carry the triumphs of the cross to all parts of the world.—Testimonies for the Church 9:228 (1909). LDE 153.4
Afflictions, crosses, temptations, adversity, and our varied trials are God’s workmen to refine us, sanctify us, and fit us for the heavenly garner.—Testimonies for the Church 3:115 (1872). LDE 154.1
“1 Peter 5:9 Whom resist stedfast in the faith, knowing that the same afflictions are accomplished in your brethren that are in the world. 5:10 But the God of all grace, who hath called us unto his eternal glory by Christ Jesus, after that ye have suffered a while, make you perfect, stablish, strengthen, settle you.”