The christianization of the roman empire
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The Christianization of the Roman Empire. 6.12 | Christianity’s Rise and Occupation of Rome. “We have overcome all the nations of the world, because we have realized that the world is directed and governed by the gods”. Roman Paganism. Romans believed in many gods, who favored Rome

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The Christianization of the Roman Empire

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The christianization of the roman empire

The Christianization of the Roman Empire

6.12 | Christianity’s Rise and Occupation of Rome


Roman paganism

  • “We have overcome all the nations of the world, because we have realized that the world is directed and governed by the gods”

Roman Paganism

  • Romans believed in many gods, who favored Rome

  • Adding gods to their list of gods was common

    • Adopting local gods [Greeks]

    • Deification of emperors


Christianity

Christianity

  • Jesus Christ born c. 0 anno domini

    • Roman issue of Jewish revolts

    • Jesus claims to be King of the Jews [death]

  • 3 major Jewish revolts

    • Sack of Jerusalem 70 AD

    • Siege of Masada 71 AD

  • Later [Saint] Peter [Jew] travels to Rome

  • Later [Saint] Paul [Jew]

    • Persecutor of Christians – their fanaticism

    • Converts: opens Christianity to gentiles c. 50 AD

      • Christian/Jewish contempt


Origins of christian theology

Origins of Christian Theology

  • Like many religions, Christianity shared common roots

    • Hindu goddess Krishna: c. 1000 B.C.

      • A carpenter, born of a virgin and baptized in a river

    • Zoroastrian god Mithra: c. 600 B.C.

      • Born on December 25; performed miracles; resurrected 3 days after his death

      • A.k.a. “the lamb”, “the way”, “the truth”, “the light”, “the messiah”

    • The Greeks drank wine to remember the son of the god Dionysius

      • who died and returned from the grave


The greek east

The Greek East

  • The Greek god Prometheus, seen as a savior who died for the sins of man

    • Also seen as a Lucifer “bringer of light” because he brought light (fire) to mankind, deceiving Zeus

    • For taking this gift; men were punished by Zeus

  • Prometheus was punished for eternity for this: like Lucifer

  • Monotheistic Christianity takes on a polytheistic hierarchy


The story of horus and jesus

The Story of Horus and Jesus

  • Written in 1280 B.C., the Egyptian Book of the Dead describes Horus

    • He was the son of the god Osiris

    • Born of a virgin mother

    • Baptized in a river by Anup, known as the Baptizer (J.t.B.)

      • Anup was later beheaded

    • Horus was tempted while alone in the desert

    • Horus healed the sick, the blind, and cast out demons

    • Horus walked on water

    • Horus raised a man from the dead named Asar, which translates to “Lazarus”

    • Horus had 12 disciples

    • Horus was crucified, and after 3 days two women announced that Horus had been resurrected


Why they were persecuted

Why They were Persecuted

  • Christianity was tolerated until it began to threaten public stability

  • The Crisis of the Third Century

    • Political instability led to social reforms [Please the gods!]

    • Christian refusal to participate – now there is socialinstability

  • Persecutions began under Diocletian to end instability

    • Martyrdom became expected to be a “true” Christian

    • St. Augustine: “the mania for self-destruction”

  • Only the fanatical remained in Christianity

    • Isolation and division of sects

    • Stylites

  • “We have overcome all the nations of the world, because we have realized that the world is directed and governed by the gods”


The appeal of christianity

The Appeal of Christianity

  • Persecutions could not remove Christianity

  • Pagan v. Christian promises of afterlife

    • Hinduism v. Buddhism promises of afterlife

  • Christians in the military and PCSing

    • Christian cults in the infantry

    • Mithraic cults with the generals


Civil wars after diocletian

Civil Wars After Diocletian

  • Used the popularity of Christianity in the armies to pull support [civil war]

    • Battle of MilvianBridge312: Edict of Milan 313

  • Political motives

    • Monotheistic movements: Sol Invictus

    • Council of Nicaea 325

  • Religion in Politics

    • Julian the Apostate

    • Theodosius the Great: Christianity 385

  • Political Fragmentation

    • Eastern and Western Empires 395


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