Christians are not routinely persecuted for our faith in modern America. It is more common that we are summarily ignored, with a pinch of scorn thrown in. Of course, a lot of this we have brought on ourselves through stubbornness in acknowledging difficult truths and holding onto beliefs and practices that harm others. Even then, it is very difficult to get elected to positions of power in America without the help of the Christian church.
This was not the case for early Christians. In first century Palestine, they were viewed with suspicion, blamed for social problems and treated as foreigners or traitors. Confessing Jesus as Lord and Savior had very difficult consequences for early Christians. They were well aware of this, and considered the consequences worth it.