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Apparently an increasingly popular book, written by a professor from Notre Dame, asserts that the persecutions of Christians have in fact been a myth. One of her more stunning findings is that some of the Roman historian accounts were written years and years after the fact. They're probably wrong. In fact from her perch a mere few thousand years later, she's pretty sure they were inaccurate. Yep. Ya know, cause she's smarter...and stuff.

Actually, I'd like to just laugh at her, but this book is gaining some real traction. Here's a very bizarre excerpt that leaves me with not a few hairs standing up on the back of my neck.

Quote:The Sunday school narrative of a church of martyrs, of Christians huddled in catacombs out of fear, meeting in secret to avoid arrest, and mercilessly thrown to lions merely for their religious beliefs is a macabre fairy tale. When Christians appeared in Roman courtrooms, they were not tried as heretics, blasphemers, or even fools. Christians had a reputation for being socially reclusive, refusing to join the military, and refusing to swear oaths. Once in the courtroom Christians said things that sounded like sedition. They were rude, subversive, and disrespectful. Most important, they were threatening. Even if the actions of the Romans still seem unjust, we must admit that they had reasons for treating Christians the way they did. (page 186)

Here's a link to an interesting article on the book http://the-american-catholic.com/2013/03...more-45556

And editorial reviews from Amazon's page

Quote:“Brilliant and provocative…Drawing on close readings of traditional martyr stories and on deep historical research, she convincingly demonstrates that little evidence exists for the widespread persecution of Christians by the Romans.” (—Publisher's Weekly )

“Compellingly argued and artfully written, Moss reveals how the popular misconception about martyrdom in the early church still creates real barriers to compassion and dialogue today. An important book and a fascinating read.” (—Archbishop Desmond Tutu )

“This is the best sort of history: delightfully accessible yet based on prodigious scholarship, deeply serious, yet entertaining and enlightening. Above all, it shows the reader the importance of sweeping away myth, in order that we do not behave badly in the present, using the past as our excuse.” (—Diarmaid MacCulloch, Professor of the History of the Church at Oxford University and author of Christianity: the First Three Thousand Years )

“A tour de force addition to the literature of sacred violence; a case study in how bold scholarship can dismantle it. Candida Moss’s religious history will change religion, and, if Christians heed it, history, too.” (—James Carroll, Author of Jerusalem, Jerusalem )

“Moss dismantles the wall of righteousness that some Christians erect in order to justify their conflict with others. Without this persecution narrative, we will be better equipped to work together in our complex and pluralistic world.” (—Sister Simone Campbell, Executive Director of NETWORK )

“This is a timely and eye opening book. Moss’ carefully researched and readable account corrects and clarifies an important feature of a history that has been fictionalized for too long.” (—Harvey Cox, Hollis Research Professor of Divinity at Harvard, and author of The Future of Faith )

“In engaging prose and with scholarly acumen, Moss pulls back the curtain on one of Western history’s best-kept secrets-that Christians were never subjects of sustained persecution. Read this book and rejoice as Moss turns history on its head and points the way beyond religious violence.” (—Diana Butler Bass, author of Christianity After Religion )

“Not only has Candida Moss reminded us that much of what we accept uncritically is pious legend, but that such myths poison the religious and political rhetoric of our time. There is something here to offend everyone, which is the first sign of groundbreaking work.” (—Rev. Dr. Robin R. Meyers, UCC Minister and author of The Underground Church: Reclaiming the Subversive Way of Jesus )

“Historical argumentation at its most cogent.” (—Booklist )

Make of it what you will...
:realmad:

God will not be mocked!
To quote a Jewish mother whose son told her that the story of Moses was a myth: "And you were there?"

Ms. Moss, and you were there? Sounds like another case of history revision to me.
She obviously has some sort of adgenda.
''Persecution of early Christians was a myth?''... and a liar is a liar

I wish they'd make up their minds. Last I heard (History Channel maybe) was that it was we Christians that burned Rome and, so, we deserved to be persecuted.

There can be only so many victims in the world, you know. Jews (the biggie), homosexuals, folks of African descent, Muslims, Hindus, Buddhists, Gypsies, Pakistani cab drivers -- anyone but Christians and Europeans (especially males), who are always and at all times the guilty persecutors.
Precisely why my daughter is NOT going to Notre Dame. Oh I'll still root for the football team ♥ but only from afar. And I'll pray for the institution, but I won't be anywhere near South Bend (except when endlessly circling that cesspool of an airport in Chicago that never lets you land and get on another plane).  The institution's beauty is truly external only. :'(

But even beyond South Bend, many Westerners who call themselves 'Christian' already don't believe there were martyrs.

Whatever. I gladly opt to stay with the ancient beliefs of Christianity, whether or not the world deems them "mythological". The Holy Mother, Jesus our God, all the holy apostles, and all the saints of the early Church are more real to me than anything I see in this world. Purgatory will be a step UP for me, except those few hours a week I am at Mass.

Can you imagine if this

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Quote: The Sunday school narrative of a church of martyrs, of Christians huddled in catacombs out of fear, meeting in secret to avoid arrest, and mercilessly thrown to lions merely for their religious beliefs is a macabre fairy tale. When Christians appeared in Roman courtrooms, they were not tried as heretics, blasphemers, or even fools. Christians had a reputation for being socially reclusive, refusing to join the military, and refusing to swear oaths. Once in the courtroom Christians said things that sounded like sedition. They were rude, subversive, and disrespectful. Most important, they were threatening. Even if the actions of the Romans still seem unjust, we must admit that they had reasons for treating Christians the way they did. (page 186)
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were re-done like this?

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Quote: The school narrative of a synagogue of martyrs, of Jews huddled in attics out of fear, meeting in secret to avoid arrest, and mercilessly thrown in camps merely for their religious beliefs is a macabre fairy tale. When Jews appeared in German courtrooms, they were not tried as heretics, blasphemers, or even fools. Jews had a reputation for being socially reclusive, refusing to join the military, and refusing to swear oaths. Once in the courtroom Jews said things that sounded like sedition. They were rude, subversive, and disrespectful. Most important, they were threatening. Even if the actions of the Nazis still seem unjust, we must admit that they had reasons for treating Jews the way they did. (page 186)
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Wouldn't happen, would it?
Please be charitable toward people who have strictly a historical interest in denying mass murder. They only care about good history. No agenda.
Around 10 years ago the popular theory amongst secular humanist types was that the early Christians deserved to be punished. I guess that didn't go over too well with the general public, so the new meme is that it really didn't happen. I guess Christian Martyr denial won't be classified as a hate crime.
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