Jesus taught his friends a little about how he would help them in the midst of persecution (216).
“When the world hates you, remember that the world hated me first. If you belonged to the world, then the world would love you. But I’ve called you to love God & to be separate from this world; that’s why the world hates you.
“Remember that I told you: ‘No slave is greater than his master.’ So if the world persecutes me, the world will definitely persecute you, too.
“But, if people do the things I’ve taught, then people will do the things you teach, too, because you are connected to me! They may not have known God, but through me they can know God, and through you they can know me.
“The people of this world would never have understood that they are guilty of their sins before God – unless I had taught them this, and unless I had done miracles among them. But now, the people of this world can no longer plead innocence of their guilt before God.
“Nevertheless, many people will still choose to love themselves & hate me. And anyone who hates me hates God also! This simply fulfills what was written in the inspired scriptures: ‘They hated me for no reason at all.’
“But in the midst of all this persecution, the Holy Spirit will help you bear fruit for God. I will send the Spirit to you from God. He will continue to teach you about me, so you can continue to teach others about me. I chose you from the very beginning for this very purpose – to be my witnesses.
“I have told you many things about God & his plan for you. Remember everything I’ve taught you, and hold on to your faith in me — even though people of the world will persecute you because of your faith in me!
“They will expel you from the synagogues, and they will even kill you, thinking they are serving God! They’ll think that way because they do not really know God & they do not really know me.”
Jesus, please help us to love sharing in Your suffering.
(216) John 15:18-16:3