Matthew 10:17 – 18 says this, “But be on guard against people, for they will hand you over to the courts and flog you in their synagogues; and you will even be brought before governors and kings on My account, as a testimony to them and to the Gentiles.”
Jesus is preparing His hand-picked group of twelve disciples to go out on their own into the world and preach His message about the coming of His kingdom (Matthew 10:1). He is warning them that it will be dangerous. They may not know it yet, but Jesus is pointing forward to a time of great persecution of Christians after His death, resurrection, and return to heaven. He said in the previous verse that persecution will include being flogged in the synagogues by the Jewish religious leaders after being tried before a Jewish court (Matthew 10:17).
Now Jesus adds that substantial persecution will come from the Gentiles, as well. His followers will be “dragged” before governors and kings for His sake. These would include Jewish religious leaders (Acts 4:1–22), but also secular Jewish government authorities (Acts 12:1–4) and, eventually, Roman rulers (Acts 14:5).
This persecution before these authorities would serve a specific purpose, however. When standing trial, Jesus said His followers would continue to represent Him. In this way, they would have the opportunity to tell the message of Jesus to those at the highest levels of power, both Jews and Gentiles. The coming persecution would allow the good news of salvation through faith in Christ to reach even those who were doing the persecuting.
I look at this and realize that every opportunity was and is an excuse to witness about Christ. Every opportunity.
Think on that today.