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Concordia University
THEO 206

THEO 206FINAL EXAM QUESTIONSOPTIONS FOR QUESTION 11Explain the opposition to Christianity and its consequencesChristians like Jews and Muslims are monotheistic that is they believe in only one God and claimed their God was Jesus Christ Christians refused to worship foreign gods and that refusal led to persecution and martyrdom The consequence of this was the scapegoating of Jews and Christians with false accusations In its first three centuries the Christian church endured periods of persecution at the hands of Roman authorities Christians were persecuted by local authorities on an intermittent and adhoc basis In addition there were several periods of empirewide persecution which was directed from the seat of government in Rome The persecutions culminated with Diocletian and Galerius at the end of the third and beginning of the fourth century The Great Persecution is considered the largest Beginning with a series of four edicts banning Christian practices and ordering the imprisonment of Christian clergy the persecution intensified until all Christians in the empire were commanded to sacrifice to the gods or face immediate execution Over 20000 Christians are thought to have died during Diocletians reign However as Diocletian zealously persecuted Christians in the Eastern part of the empire his coemperors in the West did not follow the edicts and so Christians in Gaul Spain and Britannia were virtually unmolestedThis persecution lasted until Constantine I came to power in 313 and legalized Christianity It was not until Theodosius I in the later fourth century that Christianity would become the official religion of the Empire Between these two events Julian II temporarily restored the traditional Roman religion and established broad religious tolerance renewing Pagan and Christian hostilitiesSome early Christians sought out and welcomed martyrdom Roman authorities tried hard to avoid Christians because they goaded chided belittled and insulted the crowds until they demanded their death One man shouted to the Roman officials I want to die I am a Christian leading the officials to respond If they wanted to kill themselves there was plenty of cliffs they could jump off Such seeking after death is found in Tertullians Scorpiace but was certainly not the only view of martyrdom in the Christian church Both Polycarp and Cyprian bishops in Smyrna and Carthage respectively attempted to avoid martyrdom1 Explain the opposition to Christianity and its consequences version2 Christians were understood as different sect of Judaism and this relationship would only later cause major dispute between the two sides The emergence of Christianity was marked when individuals from the Jewish religion had started in believing in Jesus Christ These individuals began to grow in numbers in the second century and slowly more people were moving away from the Jewish religion While Christianity was slowly developing they had soon adopted some traditions which would include anti Jewish sentimentsAs many orthodox jews and rabbis began to take note of this a sense of bitterness towards the Christians had arose The Jews were now inclined to see the Christians as their rival twin As the Christian religion began to take under way their beliefs had yet to present a definite identity which led the Christians and their faith to be quite ambiguous for the Jews The jews felt betrayed by the Christians as they used their synagogues to pray and develop their belief in JesusNow bitter the jews grew livid cursing them when found in their synagogues which then led to their expulsion from stepping foot into them In addition to their expulsion many jews would resort to spreading malicious rumors intentionally directed at the Christian fate The jews were only one of the opposing sides of Christianity and with the spreading of the religion one will be able to see the many consequences they will have to experience along with their emergence The Roman view on religion had been a predominant practice of the roman world While Muslims and Jews were practicing their religions for many preceding years they were still frowned upon by the Romans and especially with the emergence of Christianity there was much animosity towards them The Christians were perceived as an alternate society they refused to adhere to the Roman Life and refused to worship the roman godsAs their values stayed persistent and continued to stay true to their beliefs some citizens in the roman society feared them as the Christians presented an underlying form of power This would posed a threat to the Roman Empire This threat that the Christians posed only led to the roman government to associate the Christians as an abomination Jews and Christians were active religions that were considered as alien religions in the roman society As they were both deemed guilty for practicing an alternate religion it was more common to see the Christians getting the upper hand in punishments and heavy stigmatizations by the public For instance Nero in 64 saw Christians as a group distinct from Jews and acted against them turning the public against them They were accused of showing actions presenting hatred towards the public by not actively taking part in military services and allegedly defiling the roman customs More animosity arose with time and there wasnt much time before brutal measures were taken Because of their refusal to adhere to the roman life persecutions were often resorted to Individuals who were found practicing the religion were harassed in the streets and sometimes killed in mass numbers As the religion began to disperse around the west more and more of these reactions were seen In Palestine they were harassed in the streets and as they spread to Egypt Syria Rome and eventually Asia it was very common that they suffered severe and sporadic persecutions1Explain the Gnosticism contained in the Gospel of Judas placing it in the context of when it was produced
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