The 2x2s frequently use the following terms in their sermons and testimonies: “taking up or bearing your cross, suffering, sacrificing, being persecuted, denying self, dying daily, dying to the world, trials and tribulation.
Workers teach that if a 2×2 is not suffering in some manner for God, something is wrong with them and their service to God, i.e. If we suffer, we shall also reign with Him (2 Tim. 2:12).
Scripture that assures Christians they will suffer for Christ’s sake. However, the suffering Paul was addressing was not be inflicted by the church or self. It will come from non-Christians and it will be offset by God’s blessings of peace and joy. Workers urge members to suffer for Christ:
Some 2x2s voluntarily suffer by giving up pleasures, money, time, certain pleasures possessions, personal attractiveness, activities, some of which which the workers require of them if they want to be baptized and take part in meetings and communion.
1 Peter 4:4 – Forasmuch then as Christ hath suffered for us in the flesh, arm yourselves likewise with the same mind: for he that hath suffered in the flesh hath ceased from sin;
Hymn 348 in their hymnal, Hymns Old and New, 1987 Ed.:
Suffering must precede the glory,
But we know His will is best;
After toil and tribulation,
Comes the joy of home and rest.
Worker Quote: The nice easy way to serve God. When it is easy for us, there is something wrong. There will be nothing accomplished in this household of God without suffering. There will be no progress, no growth or prosperity in this house apart from suffering. Somebody is going to suffer and the more the better. When we find a nice easy way to serve God, to be in this walk of God we are on the way to destruction. It will be the most sacrificing life and should be (Andrew Abernethy, Australia Conv, 1961).
Worker Quote: We need to focus on death. Jesus said that, even now, those who are dead will hear the voice of God. One reason that we don’t hear his voice is that we are not dead enough. We need to learn how to die, to deny ourselves. We need more living, but before we can have that we need more death. How can we know about life if we don’t know about death? Death goes with life and life goes with death. It is sure that all will die, but all can die. That is what we need: it is more death. God wants a dying people, not a dead people. We, the people of God, expect too much without dying. Life comes with the resurrection (Dellas Linaman, Madrid, Spain, 2005).