Shortly after Jesus' interaction with the rich young man:

Peter began to say to him, “See, we have left everything and followed you.” Jesus said, “Truly, I say to you, there is no one who has left house or brothers or sisters or mother or father or children or lands, for my sake and for the gospel, who will not receive a hundredfold now in this time, houses and brothers and sisters and mothers and children and lands, with persecutions, and in the age to come eternal life. But many who are first will be last, and the last first.”—Mark 10:28-31 (ESV)

The rest of the saying is so hopeful, that phrase just sticks out as strange. Was the phrase intended to be a positive as presumably the other items are, or is it just part of the cost of following Jesus, or is it a later insertion reflecting the reality of the early church? Or is there some other way we can read this phrase?

  • This question is loosely derived from a post about "upside-down time" and therefore earns all sorts of challenge points. The connection in my mind (which shows which way I lean on the question) is that Jesus is saying we need to be prepared for times when life is a struggle and not expect nothing but blessings when we follow him. Commented Dec 12, 2011 at 21:49

3 Answers 3


Jesus has said many times that in following Him, we will endure persecution from the world. That's what He is saying here.

If a person should forsake these things (for His sake and the Gospel's), he will receive a hundred times as much in the family of God; in this time (this current age, which brings persecution, possibly from the people we forsake), and in the age to come.

With persecutions - Persecutions, or the contempt of the world, and bodily sufferings on account of their religion, they "must" meet. Jesus did not conceal this; but he consoled them. He assured them that "amid" these, or perhaps it should be rendered "after" these, they should find friends and comfort. It is well to bear trial if "God" be our Friend. With the promises of the Bible in our hand, we may hail persecutions, and thank God that, amid so many sorrows, he has furnished such abundant consolations.

bible.cc/mark/10-30.htm (Barnes)

I think the reason Jesus mentioned it in this particular verse is to remind us, and possibly console us (as Barnes says) at the same time, in that although we'll receive a hundredfold in forsaking the world for His sake, there will be persecution. And from a consoling perspective: But amidst the persecution, you will find comfort, love, etc. through these blessings.

  • Hey @Shredder, I've been glad to see you getting involved in the site here. Can you augment your answer with support for this reading, either with other scripture, or with commentary support, or the like?
    – Ray
    Commented Dec 13, 2011 at 14:53
  • Hi @Ray, Happy to be part of such an awesome site! I believe the commentaries on this page support this idea: bible.cc/mark/10-30.htm (forgot how to do hyperlinks in comments >_<) Commented Dec 13, 2011 at 17:39
  • Hyperlinks are in the form [text] (link) without the space, of course. Commented Dec 13, 2011 at 20:24
  • So your answer is that Jesus is saying that persecution is part of the cost of being His follower? Why does he include them in this list? (+1 on the answer, by the way, but it's not quite a complete answer yet. ;-) Commented Dec 13, 2011 at 20:27
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    Cool. I think I would have said it the other way around: it's a warning. Jesus is telling us we're going to get some great "stuff", but it's not without cost. The rich young man went away sad because he had no idea that by keeping his riches he was losing out on so much more. But Peter didn't (yet) understand that following Jesus would mean persecution too. It's not the case that following Jesus brings automatic blessings and no sorrows. (At least not in this world.) Thanks for your thoughts! Commented Dec 14, 2011 at 20:41

I believe God gave me revelation of this scripture years ago. When we are willing to obey God at any cost, forsaking all if need be; He will multiply back to us in this life and the life to come, blessings spiritual and natural. My understanding of what Holy Spirit revealed to me is this... "Persecutions" is a warning here. Jesus want them to be enlighted and know what to expect when they are walking in this blessing. They are going to be persecuted for the abundance of blessing they walk in this blessed life. He did not speculate as to whether it would be family members, friends, christians etc. But he did promise they would be persecuted. One can ask... Why will they be persecuted? It's because God made a promise to bless them, and He will. The enemy will not like it and will persecute them because they have been blessed above, beyoung and immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine. The great outpour of blessings from God is why they will be persecuted.


I think it might mean authority. As in the disciples would govern the 12 tribes of Israel so here they can govern (persecute, or 'execute') power or authority over the land, who can come and go etc. It's only my reading of it and happy for others to disagree and you'd quite possibly be right

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    Welcome to Biblical Hermeneutics Stack Exchange! This isn't what we are looking for in answers. Specifically it doesn't address the question starting from the text itself. You can edit your answer, if you would like to dig into the details a bit more. Commented Jul 28, 2020 at 19:07

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