“Rejoice over her, O heaven, and you saints and apostles and prophets, for God has given judgment for you against her!”
The age old question, “Where is God when it hurts?” is answered here. In the midst of all the evil and suffering that these first century believers were assaulted with, their inevitable sense of divine abandonment must have been palpable. We are no less subject to this as well. Things go bad for us. When assumed that since we had given our lives to God that He would – He must – assure that things go well for us! But then life happens. We are subject to such futile things as opposition, strained relationships, sickness, loss, tragedy (Romans 8:20). But God never lets such futility go too far or for too long. Such things are designed to prepare His children for their glorious eternal destinies and through their persevering faith in God in the midst of these trials they are to reveal to the world the glory of God.
The rejoicing charged here is not over the demise of their persecutors but over their vindication for declaring with their lives and testimonies that Jesus Christ was Lord. The instrument of demons had paraded as the holy instrument of God and saw their war against Christ’s apostles and prophets as doing God’s will, but God Himself would have the last word!
Let God have the last word in your life. Remember, many of the first century apostles and prophets laid down their lives in their attempts to reach out to the persecutors. They were honoring their Lord’s injunction to do so. So should we today. If we took this more seriously, we might find that increasingly our message about culturally sensitive matters may well be increasingly vindicated as well.