Except for John who died of old age while in exile, all the apostles died a violent death, all because of their refusal to deny the resurrection.
“Matthew suffered martyrdom by being slain with a sword at a distant city of Ethiopia.
Mark expired at Alexandria, after being cruelly dragged through the streets of that city.
Luke was hanged upon an olive tree in the classic land of Greece.
John was put in a caldron of boiling oil, but escaped death in a miraculous manner, and was afterward banished to Patmos.
Peter was crucified at Rome with his head downward.
James, the Greater, was beheaded at Jerusalem.
James, the Less, was thrown from a lofty pinnacle of the temple, and then beaten to death with a fuller’s club.
Bartholomew was flayed alive.
Andrew was bound to a cross, whence he preached to his persecutors until he died.
Thomas was run through the body with a lance at Coromandel in the East Indies.
Jude was shot to death with arrows.
Matthias was first stoned and then beheaded.
Barnabas of the Gentiles was stoned to death at Salonica.” (Taken fromhttp://www.theexaminer.org/)
It’s hard to imagine they would suffer and die for a lie. The unyielding conclusion is right before us: Their testimony is true.
They didn’t have theology, or resources, or talent. All they had was the stubborn conviction from what they saw: an empty tomb and a flesh and blood Christ standing in their midst.
This stubborn conviction led them to change the world like never before.
So can we.
Happy Easter to all!