A (Christian) Martyr – a person who is killed because of their religion or other beliefs. (in this case Christianity)
Martyrs. Wow. Where to start. I have an incredible huge respect for them. They had a faith so strong, and they loved God so much that they had and/or allowed terrible things to happen to them which resulted in persecution.
Dying for Jesus. Would I be that brave? I only hope I would be, and I pray that someday my faith will reach that point where I can easily say I’m positive I will give up my life for Him.
1 Peter 4:14-16 says:
If you are insulted for the name of Christ, you are blessed, because the Spirit of glory and of God rests upon you. But let none of you suffer as a murderer or a thief or an evildoer or as a meddler. Yet if anyone suffers as a Christian, let him not be ashamed, but let him glorify God in that name.
Martyrs may endure terrible things on earth in order to spread the news to others, but they are greatly rewarded in heaven. Those who keep that faith and hope through all their suffering are massive inspirations and role models in faith.
I’d like to say that around three years ago, give or take a few, I picked up an awesome book for a dollar at a local consignment store. A book full of stories of Christian martyrs. Only recently have I been actually reading it, and I’ve been blown away by the true stories of martyrs all over the world at all different times. It’s called Jesus Freaks by DC Talk. It makes for an excellent devotional. I recommend you take it out of a library, or get your hands on a copy if you can.
There were some incredible martyrs out there who praised Jesus through, beatings, robberies, deaths, rapes, and all sorts of horrors. They spoke God’s word to their killers, captors, and rioting people of other religions. Risking it all for Jesus didn’t bother them one bit.
I can only pray that one day I’ll have the faith of a martyr.