Christianity And The Early Roman Empire Theology Religion Essay
Christianity is base of the Bible which can divide into Old Testament and News Testament. Old Testament is for the Hebrews and the News Testament is given by Jesus Christ, form the beginning, it is for the Hebrews too but they don’t admit Jesus. So it starts the missionary work. The Early Roman Empire is mean the period of Augustus to the period of Constantine. That mean the period from 27B.C. to 337A.D. In this paper, I will study the relationship of the policy of the Roman Empire and the development of the church. I will divide this study to 3 parts. The first part is the period of 27B.C. to 64A.D. The second part is the period of 64A.D. to 311A.D. The third part is after 311A.D.In this paper; I will study in the empire Nero, Decius, Valerian, Diocletian, Galerius, Constantine and Theodosius. I will study in how their policies in religion effect the development of church. I would like to study in this topic is because of my religion. I am a catholic, so I would like to know more about my religion. In this paper, I will study deeply in the reason of how come Christianity becomes the state religion of the Roman Empire from the strong knock from the government. I will list out the development of the church and the reaction of the church for the knock policy from the empire. Also the reasons of the empire change their policy. I would like to know more about the conflict of different religion in the early Roman Empire. Just like the relationship between the Judaism and the Christianity and know more about how their relationship can affect the government policy in religion. Also, I would know more about the history of the Christianity became the state religion of Roman Empire from the knock policy for them. I know there are the big changes for the Christianity, and there are big challenges to the church in the early Roman Empire. I would like to know how the church facing the challenges.
In the first period that means 27B.C. to 64B.C. actually, the Roman Empire has given freedom to different religion to develop if they worship the Roman Empire. But the Christianity only worships one God. It is knocking to worship idol or another idol. “You shall have no other gods before me.” is the first Commandments of those Ten Commandments. But the Christianity haven’t be knocked it is because that the Roman Empire thought that the Christianity is a part of the Judaism. They thought that Judaism is the religion of all of the Jewish, and they do not want to be the enemy of the whole Jewish. So the Judaism can be the only exception of this policy. They can only worship of their own god without any punishment. Christianity has same treatment of the Judaism because of the misunderstanding. In this period the missionary work of Christianity have a great develop. The missionary work not just only inside the Jewish, they start their missionary work to other nation such as Roman and other different nation. Also they invite some of the people who kicked out by Judaism. The development of the church in this period is really great development. These make a work “catholic” appearance. “Catholic” not just the meaning of the votaries of Christianity, it also means the general of the Christianity, it means that more national know the religion, also more people be the votaries of the Christianity. It is a well develop period of the Christianity.
In the second period that mean 64A.D. to 311A.D. It is a big period; also it is really tragic period for the church and the votaries. Start of the Nero, the catholic start being persecuted. In 64A.D, there a blaze happened in Rome. There have some rumor of the blaze that’s the firebug is Nero. Nero blames this crime to the catholic. And the Catholics have punished some capital punishment. It is the first time catholic been persecution. Luckily, it just happened in Rome, other cities have not been influence. During the following 100 years, there no any large scale persecution, but still have some persecution for the clergies. In the domination of Marcus Aurelius, It is a nightmare for the church and all the catholic. He announces that people can get the property of the catholic after the informant. It becomes a great trade of informant the catholic, the government found out many of the Catholics and punishes them; the government gives them torture if they do not deny their religion. Under the domination of Marcus Aurelius, many catholic have been persecuted to death. It is not the most horrible policy for the catholic. In the domination of Decius, Valerian, Diocletian and Galerius, there are large-scale persecutions for the catholic, many of catholic dead cause of the policy. This situation happened until 311A.D. The reason of theses’ happened is because the Roman Empire knew that Christianity is not a part of the Judaism, they found out that Christianity is not a religion just for the Jewish, although these two religions are similar, they are not the same. Also, the church will accept the votaries who the Judaism kicked out, it makes Judaism’s objection of the Christianity, it makes the Roman Empire can sense the difference between Judaism and Christianity quickly. Also, Christianity is not a state religion for a nation. Affiliate, there are many differences between romans and catholic, it make conflicts during their life. Because of the different religions, the catholic cannot accept the life mode of other religion; they think that they are the higher level during the votaries of other religion. They use “Saint” to descript themselves; the meaning of “Saint” is meaning the different class of people. Those Catholic’s attitudes and behavior let the Jewish and Roman not feels good; Let them hatred the Catholic. Also, the Roman Empire knows it is different religion with Judaism; also it is not a religion for the state nation. The Roman Empire cannot tolerate the catholic allowing only one god, criticize the other religion, other god and they have not privilege of do not worship the empire. Do not worship the empire in the Roman Empire is a crime, so the government have reason to punish those Catholic; also because of the animosity from the votaries of other religion, when the policy commence, the public are willing to peach the catholic, it let many of Catholic been persecuted to death in this period, for the church, this period is the dark ages. But it cannot stop the development inside the church. In this period, the church although have strong persecution from the government, inside the church, for the religion, there are great develop for the faith, the system of the church; also the church become more and more unite. In this period the clergies more focus of the doctrine than the missionary work. There has a large controversy about the doctrine. Furthermore, there is the apologists’ appearance. Apologist is the people who write the article the reject the wrong accusation form the pagan. Although it is dangerous, it can help the catholic know more about their religion. Also, in this period the church have established the god is three in one, this is the important step for the church. In this period, there are big changes for the system. The beginning of the episcopacy system begins in this period. It is the major reforms of the church. It can let the government of the church be more institutionalized. Also, it will let the church be more united. The church will have the same system, same policy, same target; it will let the church have a more institutionalized of the development. It is something really surprise is that the numbers of the Catholic in this period have been increase and then the area of the catholic not just inside the city Roma but the whole Roman Empire.
The third period is the time after 311A.D. It is the period of the glory of the church. In 311A.D the empire Galerius suffering from terminal illness. He gets that it is the punishment from the god of the Christianity, and stop the persecution of the Catholic. It is the foot stop of the persecution of the persecution policy. He requests all of the Catholic pray to him, and it is the first time the Roman Empire recognizes the church and Christianity. Although the Empire not exactly admits the god, it is very excited thing for the Catholic and the church: because of the stop of the over 300 years’ precaution. In 313A.D, Constantine has issued an edict, the edict called “Edict of Milan”. It announces that the Church have freedom to hold the religious ceremonies, have their religious gatherings. Although Christianity has not been the state religion yet, they have more freedom than the other religions. Also, Constantine has been the first catholic of all the empire, it is a big encourage to the Church and the Catholic. The reason that Constantine be Catholic is because in 312A.D during the war of the occupation of Rome. He saw a cross on the sky, and it written “This mark will make the victory.” It let him be more confidence of the war. After his victory, he becomes the catholic, and given more freedom to the Christianity. Also, the policy is the way of appeasement for him to fawn the catholic, I have said it before in this paper, the church although have be knocked, it became a national religion in the Empire, also it have many votaries in the country. If the empire became catholic and the Christianity can be admitted in the country, it will help the empire get many of publics’ support. In the period before Constantine, there are many of unrest, it is really important for Constantine get more support from public, and the church have large votaries in the country. The power of the church can give the large support to the Constantine’s empire. So he accept the Christianity, give the freedom to those votaries for their religion, also became catholic, not just him, also in his family. In 380A.D, Christianity became the state religion of the Roman Empire. The government of Theodosius has policy to punish the people who are not the catholic. The numbers of the Catholic have risen sharply. And many churches have been built up. The scale of the church has been larger. It is the glory period for the whole Christianity. And it starts be the state religion for the Roman Empire.
In conclusions, in this paper: it shows the relation between religions and the politic have very close relationship. Religions can help the government to unite the country and help the government be easier to govern the country. Religion can be one kind of tool to get the support from the public, it can help there government be more credibility .Although in the end of the early Roman Empire, the Christianity has been the state religion, it is not the end of the Christianity. After the Roman Empire had been broken down, the Christianity replace the Roman Empire became the delegate of the ancient times. The Christianity would become corrupt in 16 century; also it will disaggregate to different religion. For the missionary work, it expands to different country in Europe or expands to Asia. It is because the Roman Empire not just a country in Europe, its boundaries crossing to Asia, it would be easy for the clergies preach the Christianity. They can base to the Rome and it is easy for them to go to the Asia or other Europe country for the missionary work. As the result Christianity became an international religion. Although there are religion revolution during 16 century and later, but the Christianity also have a great development after that they correct their way. And the Christianity in traditional is the volunteer organization. It gives big hand during the war or inside the poor country. Nowadays, Christianity became the religion which has the most number of votaries in the world.
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