• One of the most significant legacies of the Roman Empire


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  • Around 30 CE Jesus made his way towards Jerusalem
  • The only record left behind is recounted in the New Testament
  • The followers of Jesus believed that he was the son of God and could forgive their sins if they believed in him and repented.
  • The miracles Jesus is said to have preformed were signs of his divinity
  • For Jewish leaders at the time the actions and teachings of Jesus were radical – only God
  • could forgive sins

Jesus Arrives in Jerusalem

  • When Jesus arrived in Jerusalem with his followers (apostles) he challenged the most powerful people in the Jewish hierarchy
  • While in Jerusalem Jesus was betrayed by one of his followers and he was arrested and accused of a variety of crimes
  • Jesus could not be punished by the Jewish hierarchy. , only the Roman provincial prefect
  • could do this


  • Roman prefect at this time in Jerusalem
  • Eventually condemned Jesus to crucifixion because he would not deny that he was king of
  • The Jews (this was a direct challenge to Roman imperial power.

Christianity as a New Religion

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Langston Hughes' "Negro": History & Summary

  • Jesus’ surviving followers started spreading the word about Jesus
  • This combined with spread of Jewish faith eventually led to the demise of old pagan gods
  • The attraction of the new religion seems to have been its belief in equality.
  • No matter if you were a slave or noble everyone could achieve salvation and a better life in
  • the world to come

Christianity VS. the Emperors

  • Generally the Roman state tolerated the new faith with the exception of a few
  • Nero blamed the Christians for the Great Fire of Rome

How Christianity Spread so Quickly

  • Religion eventually adopted by Emperor Constantine
  • The Christians had a coherent body of holy writings that they coupled with common rituals
  • Eventually became so persuasive that it challenged the secular administration of later
  • Roman emperors

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