A friend recently sent me this and thought I would place it here in support of the apostles' commitment to Jesus. Have no idea if one or more of these statements are true but if so, could be powerful anecdotal evidence. Please feel free to post any historical inaccuracies of the statements made here:
HOW THE APOSTLES DIED.
1. Matthew. Suffered martyrdom in Ethiopia; killed by a sword wound.
2. Mark. Died in Alexandria Egypt, after being dragged by horses through the streets until he was dead.
3. Luke. Was hanged in Greece as a result of his preaching to the lost.
4. John. Faced martyrdom when he was boiled in a huge basin of boiling oil during a wave of persecution in Rome. However, he was miraculously delivered from death.
John was then sentenced to the mines on the prison island of Patmos. He wrote the Book of Revelation on Patmos. The apostle John was later freed and returned to serve as Bishop of Edessa in modern Turkey. He died as an old man, the only apostle to die peacefully.
5. Peter. He was crucified upside down on an x shaped cross. According to church tradition it was because he told his tormentors that he felt unworthy to die the same way that Jesus had died.
6. James. Leader of the church in Jerusalem, was thrown over a hundred feet down from the southeast pinnacle of the Temple when he refused to deny his faith in Jesus. When they discovered that he survived the fall, his enemies beat him to death with a fuller's club. This was the same pinnacle where Satan had taken Jesus during the Temptation.
7. James the Son of Zebedee, was a fisherman by trade when Jesus called him. As a strong leader of the church, James was beheaded at Jerusalem. The Roman officer who guarded James watched amazed as James defended his faith at his trial. Later, the officer walked beside James to the place of execution. Overcome by conviction, he declared his new faith to the judge and knelt beside James to accept beheading as a Christian.
8. Bartholomew. Also known as Nathaniel, was a missionary to Asia. He witnessed for Jesus in present day Turkey. Bartholomew was martyred for his preaching in Armenia where he was flayed to death by a whip.
9. Andrew. He was crucified on an x shaped cross in Patras, Greece. After being whipped severely by seven soldiers, they tied his body to the cross with cords. His followers reported that, when he was led toward the cross, Andrew saluted it in these words, "I have long desired and expected this happy hour. The cross has been consecrated by the body of Jesus hanging on it". He continued to preach to his tormentors for two days until he expired.
10. Thomas. Stabbed with a spear in India during one of his missionary trips to establish the church in the subcontinent.
11. Jude. He was killed with arrows when he refused to deny his faith in Jesus.
12. Matthias. The apostle chosen to replace Judas. He was stoned and then beheaded.
13. Paul. He was tortured and then beheaded by Emperor Nero in Rome in A.D. 67. Paul endured a lengthy imprisonment, which allowed him to write his many epistles to the churches he had formed throughout the Roman Empire. These letters, which taught many of the foundational doctrines of Christianity, form a large portion of the New Testament.