And when he had opened the fifth seal, I saw under the altar the souls of them that were slain for the word of God, and for the testimony which they held: And they cried with a loud voice, saying, How long, O Lord, holy and true, dost thou not judge and avenge our blood on them that dwell on the earth? And white robes were given unto every one of them; and it was said unto them, that they should rest yet for a little season, until their fellow-servants also and their brethren, that should be killed as they were, should be fulfilled. (Rev 6:9-11 KJG)
Remember, John is talking to first century Christians about all the things they were experiencing and going through. It would be another four hundred years before Constantine adopted Christianity as the religion of Rome, and quite honestly, it was the downfall of Christianity.
So how many Christians were there that were martyred? (Acts 1:8, being a witness) Different sources quote different figures. Some sources list the figures as high as nearly 100,000 up to 313 AD, with over 20,000 of them under Diocletian’s Great Persecutions between 303-311 AD, and still, the Church grew.
Western Christians that held to a dispensational theology would always talk about the ‘Rapture’ followed by ‘Tribulation,’ while that sat in their recliners, getting fat and lazy. Elsewhere in the world Christians were being persecuted, even killed for their faith. Faith that costs you nothing, and I am not talking about salvation, but the personal investment is no faith at all. In fact, the few minutes it has taken you to read this devotion somebody, somewhere has paid the ultimate price for their faith. How much are you willing to invest?