The persecuted churches to whom Peter wrote his first epistle were comprised of both Gentiles and Jews. These churches’ large contingency of Jewish believers undoubtedly touched a soft spot in Peter’s heart, whose ministry was primarily to the Jews, as Paul’s was to the Gentiles (Galatians 2:7-8). Peter was undoubtedly passionate about penning this epistle, not only as an encouragement to Gentile believers, who were facing deprivation and death, but especially to Jewish believers, who suffered the double scourge of persecution, for being both Christians and Jews.
This double scourge of persecution suffered by Jewish Christians makes 1 Peter, the Christian’s handbook on persecution, even more relevant to us today. According to the Bible, the unprecedented persecution of the perilous times of the last days will target both Christians and Jews. In fact, Scripture predicts that two-thirds of the world’s Jewish population will be wiped out by end-time persecution.
According to the ancient Prophet Zechariah, only one-third of the world’s Jewish people will survive end-time tribulation (Zechariah 13:8-9). This surviving remnant is symbolized in Revelation by the 144,000 of chapter seven. Notice, they are sealed by the angels for their protection (Revelation 7:1-8), which is, as Hebrews 2:14 teaches, part of the ministry of the angelic host. Angels, according to the Bible, preserve God’s elect, those “who shall be heirs of salvation,” until the day of their salvation. Now we know why there is such rejoicing in the presence of the angels every time a soul is saved (Luke 15:10). Every saved soul is a mission accomplished by Heaven’s secret service, ministering angels sent to safeguard God’s elect until the day of their salvation.
It is no coincidence that our country, as well as our world, are becoming increasingly anti-Semitic at the same time they are becoming increasingly antichrist. The sights of both, our republic and our planet, are simultaneously being set on Christians and Jews. Truly, the Biblically predicted end-time persecution has arrived, and the Bible’s handbook for persecuted Christians, 1 Peter, has become required reading for all of those being targeted for persecution.