Revelation 7:9-10. “After this, I looked, and there before me was a great multitude that no one could count, from every nation, tribe, people and language, standing before the throne and before the Lamb. They were wearing white robes and were holding palm branches in their hands. And they cried out in a loud voice:
“Salvation belongs to our God,
who sits on the throne,
and to the Lamb.”
Have you ever asked yourself the question, “How much more suffering must I endure?” Doesn’t God know that I have a limit to suffering? Maximilian Kolbe was arrested in Poland in February of 1941, and in May sent to the Auschwitz death camp. As prisoner #16670, he eventually laid down his life for another prisoner on August 14, 1941, at the young age of 47. When a prisoner escaped late in July of that year, ten men from his barracks were picked to suffer death by starvation as both punishment and deterrent.
Fr. Maximilian offered to take the place of one of the men; Franciszek Gajowniczek had let out a cry of pain for his family and this priest volunteered to take his place. Maximilian said, “For Jesus Christ, I am prepared to suffer still more.” What an example of suffering. What a gospel testimony “there is no greater love than to lay down one’s life for one’s friends.” Stand for what is right, even if it means standing alone.
We need men and women who are willing to stand up for Jesus and stand out for the truth of the Gospel. John saw people from “every nation, tribe, and language, standing before the throne and before the Lamb.” God is looking for a remnant of people who are prepared to suffer still more for the sake of Jesus Christ. Listen, you and I will never be asked to suffer death by starvation, but we will be asked to take a stand for our faith, regardless of the consequences. John hears those wearing white robes crying out in a loud voice: “Salvation belongs to our God, who sits on the throne, and to the Lamb.” More than likely, Maximilian is among the martyrs wearing white robes and holding palm branches and crying out: “It’s Jesus sitting on the throne who suffered still more for me.”
I would rather stand with God and be judged by the world than stand with the world and be judged by God.
Pray for those who are suffering this morning to find comfort and hope in Jesus. Be bold in your prayers today. I’m praying for God to prepare me to suffer still more for His glory. God will never waste our suffering. Pray for NewLife. Pray for our testimony to reflect the image of Christ, “who was willing to lay down His life for us.”