No one likes to suffer. If we could, we'd all walk through life skipping and eating ice cream cones. Every day can't be all good times and delicious desserts, though, and the early Christians knew this first hand (and how). Throughout Acts, they are attacked, beaten, imprisoned, and sometimes killed for saying (really loudly) that Jesus is Lord. It sucked, but it also got people thinking. This Jesus guy must be pretty darn awesome if people are willing to die for him, right?
Questions About Suffering
Who is the source of suffering in the story? Does God will all this to happen? Or are humans just big meanies who make others suffer?
Do you think the disciples had to suffer to convince people that Jesus was awesome? Were there other ways that might have worked just as well?
Is suffering ever a good thing? Why do the disciples think it is?
Why do you think some non-Christians were won over by the way the early Christians embraced suffering?