Roman Empire And Rise Of Christianity

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Roman Empire and Rise of Christianity


The Roman civilization was the last major ancient civilization before Europe and North Africa plunged into the Dark Ages. Modern Western civilization owes much to the Romans, including the influence of the Roman legal system, tactics in warfare, monumental architecture, the spread of Christianity, and the pax Romana-the peace of Rome. The Roman civilization was also one of the most enduring civilizations, lasting over 1,200 years (Sasson, 47).

The city of Rome lay north of the Greek colonies in southern Italy and south of the metal-producing cultures of Central Europe; thus, both cultures influenced it and traded with it. Furthermore, the city was far enough away from the sea to avoid pirates but sat at the first practical crossing of the Tiber River. Being located in the center of the Mediterranean Basin made Rome strategically located to be the capital of a Mediterranean/ European empire.

Discussion and Analysis

In St. Paul's Epistle to the Romans, he explains that God's justice is “God's way of righting wrong”. St. Paul says in Jesus' sacrificial death God “ meant by this to demonstrate his justice” (Taylour, 225). According to Paul, human pride is excluded because “the keeping of law would not exclude it, but faith does”. St. Paul's reason for this is “that a man is justified by faith quite apart from success in keeping the law.

St. Paul also discusses that a person must use their gifts for the good of people. We have to use our gifts because “the gifts we possess differ as they are allotted to us by God's grace”. “A teacher should employ his gift in teaching”.

In Paul's last selection, he explains that “every person must submit to the supreme authorities”. He explains that God institutes all authorities, and if you don't follow the law you are resisting “a divine institution”. Paul says that if you do right you have no reason to fear the authorities. We pay taxes because “the authorities are in God's service and to these duties they devote their energies.” Paul also explains that if you love your neighbor has “satisfied every claim of the law”. “Love cannot wrong a neighbor; therefore the whole law is summed up in love.”

Diocletion was a Roman emperor that persecuted the Christians. He persecuted them by sending out edicts to all the empire saying that all churches be destroyed, Scriptures be burned, people that were Christian and held places of honor be degraded, and citizens that practiced Christianity after the letters went out be taken to prison.

The principal characteristic of early Christianity was its plurality. A wide variety of divergent and competing doctrines - gnostic, libertine, observant - were practiced, all claiming the authority of Jesus Christ. The “orthodox” church - it was only after the Roman government had given its support to one sect that the terms “orthodox” and “heretical” became official - eventually accepted four Gospels - Mark (c64 to 70), Matthew (c80 to 90), Luke (c70 to 90), and John (c095 to 115) - the ...
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