The Christian Church in Ancient Rome. Friday, November 1, 13

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1 The Christian Church in Ancient Rome

2 Church - a building where Christians gather to worship. Church - a group of Christians who belong to a particular denomination or sect Early Christian history church was a small number of people who believed in and followed the teachings of Jesus no denomination did not meet in any designated business

3 313 AD - Roman Emperor, Constantine, made Christianity the official religion of the Roman Empire

4 The Beginnings Some Christians associated the beginning of the church with Pentecost Pentecost - fifty Christians believe that 50 days after Jesus was resurrected (origin of Easter), the Holy Spirit descended on the eleven apostles. On that occasion, the apostles spoke different languages and were filled with a strange power. Peter preached the first Christian sermon Persuaded 3,000 people to be baptized (Acts 2:41)

5 The Apostle Paul

6 13th Disciple or the Apostle of the Gentiles (non-jews) He was born Saul Wealthy Jewish family in Tarsus (Asia Minor) Grew up with strict views about Judaism and did not like the early Christians Became a member of the Sanhedrin and worked arrested both men and women who followed Christianity Went to Damascus (City in Syria) On his way to the city received a message from above (blinding light) Became blind Baptized and regained his sight Started preaching Changed his name to Paulus

7 45 AD - 55 AD - Traveled throughout the Roman world Christian Churches spread up where ever he visited Faced many dangers Paul wrote a number of epistles (letters) to the churches he helped start Explained the teachings of Jesus Offered advice and encouragement to the members of the church New Testament book - Romans, First and Second Corinthians, Galatians, Ephesians, Philippians, Colossians, First and Second Thessalonians, First and Second Timothy, Titus, and Philemon.

8

9 The Persecution of the Christians Roman government had been tolerant of other religions as long as recognized the Roman emperor as a god. Christians did not accept the emperor as a god, and they refused to worship him, serve in the Roman army. Christians became a scapegoat for all of Rome s problems. famine flood plague

10 Emperor Nero (54 AD - 68 AD) Hatred against Christians increased persecuted against Nailed to crosses Burned alive Devoured by hungry dogs Used as torches for games and other activities All depended on the whim of the emperor

11

12 Diocletian 284 AD AD Punished Christians Beheaded, torn apart by wild beasts, eyes gouged out, sharp needles put under fingernails, hot lead poured down throats Bishops and early popes were put to death for their beliefs Christians hid in the catacombs (underground passages used as burial places) Hid and worshiped in safety Christians were persecuted until 313 AD when Emperor Constantine legalized Christianity and made it the official religion of the empire.

13

14 Church Organization Hierarchy - chain of command Head of the Church - Pope ( Father ) Originally was no more than the Bishop of Rome Rome was the center of the empire - and the bishop of the city was recognized as the head of the Church Apostle Peter is regarded as the first pope (Matthew 16:18)

15

16 Pope Joan

17 Served for two years Disguised herself as a man and occupied the papacy (office of the Pope) from 855 AD AD Identity was discovered and she was stoned to death

18 Below the pope in the Church s chain of command Archbishops (in charge of Church affairs in a particular Roman province) Bishops (highest Church officials in cities and their outlaying areas) Eventually gained control over dioceses (large, beautiful church (cathedral)) Priest (guided the religious life of Christians in the communities throughout the empire (parishes)

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