After the brutal death of Stephen recorded in Acts 7, Luke wrote in Acts 8:3, “As for Saul, he made havoc of the church, entering every house, and dragging off men and women, committing them to prison.” Female followers of Jesus were among the last to leave the cross, the first to discover the empty tomb, and some of the many who suffered for Christ during the early days of the Christian church.
Catherine Kroeger said, “One of the best-kept secrets in Christianity is the enormous role that women played in the early church.” As Christian women of today, we can learn much from the fortitude of Christian women of the past.
1. Christian women from Acts 8:3 were courageous in the midst of pain and persecution. When we know that God is with us, we have the courage to face fears and conquer obstacles. God commands us to have courage. When we are courageous, it shows we have faith and trust in Him.
1 Corinthians 16:13 says, “Watch, stand fast in the faith, be brave, be strong.”
Christians must be strong because we have a persistent foe in the devil. He constantly attacks and looks for new ways to permanently take us down. When we are attacked, we must not waver or flinch. Even when facing death, we need to press forward in the work God has called us to do because He has already conquered the grave.
In the face of conflict, Christian women must be constant. In the face of persecution, Christian women must be perseverant.
Clement of Alexandria said, “Many women have received power through the grace of God and have performed many deeds of manly valor.”
Women are invaluable servants in God’s kingdom. Take heart. Be strong. Be courageous.