Sunday, November 13, 2022
Acts 12:1-25

Key Verse: So Peter was kept in prison, but the church was earnestly praying to God for him. (Acts 12:5)


  1. Our unity with Christ has consequences

A “yes” to Jesus is a “no” to other competing powers, idols, and worldviews


  1. Persecution is to be expected

“Blessed are you when people insult you, persecute you and falsely say all kinds of evil against you because of me. 12 Rejoice and be glad, because great is your reward in heaven, for in the same way they persecuted the prophets who were before you. (Matt. 5:11-12)

“I am sending you out like sheep among wolves. Therefore be as shrewd as snakes and as innocent as doves. 17 Be on your guard against men; they will hand you over to the local councils and flog you in their synagogues. 18 On my account you will be brought before governors and kings as witnesses to them and to the Gentiles. 21 Brother will betray brother to death, and a father his child; children will rebel against their parents and have them put to death. 22 All men will hate you because of me, but he who stands firm to the end will be saved.” (Matt. 10:16-18, 21-22)

“Then you will be handed over to be persecuted and put to death, and you will be hated by all nations because of me.” (Matt. 24:9)

“If the world hates you, keep in mind that it hated me first. 19 If you belonged to the world, it would love you as its own. As it is, you do not belong to the world, but I have chosen you out of the world. That is why the world hates you.” (John 15:18-19)


  1. We respond to persecution through…
    a. Prayer
    So Peter was kept in prison, but the church was earnestly praying to God for him. (Acts 12:5)

    b. Partnership
    If one part suffers, every part suffers with it; if one part is honored, every part rejoices with it. (1 Cor. 12:26)

    c. Perseverance
    We are hard pressed on every side, but not crushed; perplexed, but not in despair; 9 persecuted, but not abandoned; struck down, but not destroyed. 10 We always carry around in our body the death of Jesus, so that the life of Jesus may also be revealed in our body. 11 For we who are alive are always being given over to death for Jesus’ sake, so that his life may be revealed in our mortal body. 12 So then, death is at work in us, but life is at work in you. (2 Cor. 4:8-12)

    Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Shall trouble or hardship or persecution or famine or nakedness or danger or sword? 36 As it is written: “For your sake we face death all day long; we are considered as sheep to be slaughtered.” 37 No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us. (Romans 8:35-37)


Where Christians Were Martyred Most:
1. Nigeria: 4,650
2. Pakistan: 620
3. Name withheld: 100*
4. Burkina Faso 100*
5. Democratic Republic of Congo: 100*
6. Mozambique: 100*
7. Central African Republic: 29
8. Cameroon: 27
9. Tanzania: 25
10. Indonesia: 15

Where Christians Face the Most Violence:
1. Nigeria
2. Pakistan
3. India
4. Central African Republic
5. Democratic Republic of Congo
6. Mozambique
7. Cameroon
8. Afghanistan
9. Mali
10. South Sudan

Where It’s Hardest to Follow Jesus:
1. Afghanistan
2. North Korea
3. Somalia
4. Libya
5. Yemen
6. Eritrea
7. Nigeria
8. Pakistan
9. Iran
10. India

Open Doors, reporting period: Oct. 2020 – Sep. 2021

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