READ : Revelation 2:8-11
Be faithful unto death, and I will give you the crown of life. (v. 10)
In every century since the stoning of Stephen until today, martyrs have died confessing that Jesus is Lord. In the words of William How’s hymn,
Thou wast their Rock, their Fortress, and their Might;
Thou, Lord, their Captain in the well-fought fight;
Thou, in the darkness drear, their one true Light.
The planting of the church in Korean soil was not without life-and-death struggle. Catholic Christians were beheaded by the thousands and their bodies dumped into the Han Gang River. A church now stands in their memory at the site of the slaughter. Over the space of many years, Protestant Christians were also martyred for their undying faith in Jesus. A striking memorial has also been built to honor them, where a gallery of oil portraits and information plaques brings to life the faith of each martyr.
To tour the gallery of these saints now gathered before the throne of God is both emotional and inspiring. The final picture frame in the gallery nearly takes your breath away. It holds a mirror. The plaque simply asks if you would be willing to die for your faith in Jesus.
God of time and eternity, may I never be ashamed of the gospel. Make me bold to witness to my faith in word and deed. Amen.