For this cause I Paul, the prisoner of Jesus Christ for you Gentiles,
1. The effectual working of the gospel procures persecution to the ministers of it. The devil cannot endure with patience to see himself dispossessed and dislodged out of the hearts in which he has rested, and therefore spits his venom against them. This is the true reason, though other things are often pretended.
2. God can make the persecutors of His gospel become martyrs for it (Galatians 1:13-23).
(1) Pray even for persecutors.
(2) Trust that God will overrule all for the best.
3. God's faithful servants are subject to persecution.
(1) They cannot be pleasers of men.
(2) Christ will not be a King after the manner of this world.
(3) God would have it thus, in order to show that the power which subdues the world is of Him.
4. We must not be ashamed of our sufferings for Christ, but rather rejoice in them. Soldiers will tell of the wounds, the shot, and all hard measure they have suffered from the hand of the enemy under their colours; so must we esteem it our chief honour, when God allows us to suffer anything for His sake.
5. The sufferings of faithful ministers benefit their people. As the captain's resolution rescues the whole army from discomfiture, so it sometimes happens that the ministers' casting themselves upon the pikes, is the security of the people depending on them.
(1) Sufferings dispose us to be serviceable to others.
(2) Pattern to others.
(3) Testimony to the worth of the doctrine delivered.
(4) The blood of the martyrs is the seed of the church. Persecution is the seed of peace.
Parallel VersesKJV: For this cause I Paul, the prisoner of Jesus Christ for you Gentiles,