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Deep Waters 'Deep Calleth Unto Deep ' -The place to go for Ministry discussions. Please keep it civil. Remember to discuss the issues, not each other.


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Old 12-01-2009, 01:08 PM
Erasmus Erasmus is offline
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Why Did the Romans Hate Christians?

Why did the Romans hate Christians? From my research, the Romans only persecuted one other religion -- the Druids. That was because the Druids practiced human sacrifices, and they liked using Roman soldiers -- so it's easy to understand why.

But why persecute Christians? After all, Christians were peaceable, kind people from all walks of life. Nero obviously used them as a scapegoat, but he wasn't the only Roman Emperor to attack Christians.

What got me thinking about this is Tom Cruise plays von Staffenberg in the movie, "Valkryie." Von Staffenberg is a German national hero because he nearly assassinated Hitler. The German people were horrified that Tom Cruise, a Scientologist, was playing their beloved hero. Why do people hate Scientology? I mean, it's a strange religion started by a Science Fiction writer, but you don't see Scientologists strapping bombs to themselves and killing people. Why the intense dislike for a peaceable group of people?
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Old 12-01-2009, 01:14 PM
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Re: Why Did the Romans Hate Christians?

Because of their freedom.

No... wait... that's supposedly why the rest of the world hates the US.

My bad.
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Old 12-01-2009, 01:39 PM
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KWSS1976 KWSS1976 is offline
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Re: Why Did the Romans Hate Christians?

Well from what I read the romans thought the christians were going to try and change there belief system and traditional roman values thats just my 2 cents...
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Old 12-01-2009, 01:54 PM
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Re: Why Did the Romans Hate Christians?

Erasmus, I will send a private message to "Brother David" and some others that may be able to answer your question.
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Old 12-01-2009, 02:11 PM
Jeffrey Jeffrey is offline
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Re: Why Did the Romans Hate Christians?

Rome was religiously all about pluralism. Worship whomever you want, but make sure you pay tribute to the Roman gods too. Christians would not even consider that.

People also knew the least about the Christians, except that the Jews hated them and repudiated them as brothers.

Also, ignorance only exacerbated other's contempt. "Christians kill children, they want to overthrow government, they are spies, they blaspheme our God and therefore our leaders, they are barbaric people," etc... There were strange rumors that persisted about the Christians that caused many to be suspicious. The Jews enjoyed peace with the Romans, for the most part. However, the Christians had no home to claim. The Jews denounced them and the Gentiles were not sure of them. Their liberality in certain areas ('women's rights' for example) and their conservativeness concerning morality in others was a threat.
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Old 12-01-2009, 02:22 PM
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Re: Why Did the Romans Hate Christians?

part of being a good Roman citizen was to pledge allegiance to the emperor and the empire by offering a pinch of incense on an altar and saying "Caesar is Lord." Christians believed there was only one Lord who was Jesus the Christ and to them offering incense was like praying to another Lord. Today, Jehovah's Witnesses consider the Pledge of Allegiance to be the same thing.

Also, Christians/Jews did not believe all religions were equal. They believed that only one God was the true God.

It was rumored that they were cannibals because they talked about eating the flesh and drinking the blood of their God.
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Old 12-01-2009, 03:05 PM
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Re: Why Did the Romans Hate Christians?

Many lies were told on the Christians. Nero claimed they burned Rome. They were said to be quite immoral and into cannibalism due to a misunderstanding of the communion supper. Lies, all incited by satan who hated the church.

But you gotta remember, too, that SOME CAESARS fought FOR the church. The Caesar before Nero had an edict out that forbade, for example, persecution against Christians, and some Jews in Rome were actually exiled due to that edict. He was plotted against and Nero's mother, his wife, fought against him, and Nero took power and these Jews were returned and Nero went after the church like a hellhound.

Feeling Nero is the man of sin in 2 Thess 2, I wrote in another thread these thoughts:
It is a historical fact that Claudius held back persecution of the church. He commanded a ruling entitled "religio licita" which disallowed Christian persecution and even banished some Jews from Rome because of their riots against "Chrestus", referring to Christ and Christians. (Suetonius, Lives of the Caesars, Claudius, XXV, 4. Cf. Acts 18:2). This means Jews could not persecute the church so long as Claudius remained in power. His wife, Agrippina, poisoned him and her son, Nero, came to power, showing that the one who restrained was removed so the wicked one could be revealed. Nero's wife Poppaea was a Jewish proselyte and brought the Jews back into favour in Rome. The mystery of iniquity, which could be seen as antichristian power of persecution, was then allowed back as Nero became emperor.
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Last edited by mfblume; 12-01-2009 at 03:10 PM.
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Old 12-01-2009, 03:32 PM
Jeffrey Jeffrey is offline
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Re: Why Did the Romans Hate Christians?

Quote:
Originally Posted by mfblume View Post
Many lies were told on the Christians. Nero claimed they burned Rome. They were said to be quite immoral and into cannibalism due to a misunderstanding of the communion supper. Lies, all incited by satan who hated the church.

But you gotta remember, too, that SOME CAESARS fought FOR the church. The Caesar before Nero had an edict out that forbade, for example, persecution against Christians, and some Jews in Rome were actually exiled due to that edict. He was plotted against and Nero's mother, his wife, fought against him, and Nero took power and these Jews were returned and Nero went after the church like a hellhound.

Feeling Nero is the man of sin in 2 Thess 2, I wrote in another thread these thoughts:
It is a historical fact that Claudius held back persecution of the church. He commanded a ruling entitled "religio licita" which disallowed Christian persecution and even banished some Jews from Rome because of their riots against "Chrestus", referring to Christ and Christians. (Suetonius, Lives of the Caesars, Claudius, XXV, 4. Cf. Acts 18:2). This means Jews could not persecute the church so long as Claudius remained in power. His wife, Agrippina, poisoned him and her son, Nero, came to power, showing that the one who restrained was removed so the wicked one could be revealed. Nero's wife Poppaea was a Jewish proselyte and brought the Jews back into favour in Rome. The mystery of iniquity, which could be seen as antichristian power of persecution, was then allowed back as Nero became emperor.
Thus sets the stage for one of the greatest novels, Quo Vadis.
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Old 12-01-2009, 03:34 PM
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mfblume mfblume is offline
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Re: Why Did the Romans Hate Christians?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jeffrey View Post
Thus sets the stage for one of the greatest novels, Quo Vadis.
Yessir!
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Old 12-01-2009, 09:04 PM
Erasmus Erasmus is offline
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Re: Why Did the Romans Hate Christians?

From my reading, the Jews were punished fairly harshly by the Romans, but because of their political rebellion --- not their religion. Did the Jews offer incense, or did they refuse? It seems like that would be against their religion as well.

While some Caesars ignored, or even helped, Christians -- many did not (Diocletian comes to mind without even doing any reading).

Are you saying is that it was because of the misunderstandings about the Christians that caused the intense persecution -- not for actual Christian beliefs or actions. Much like the Jews being persecuted during the Middle Ages because they "stole Christian children to use their blood to make matzahs?"
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