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- One of the most significant legacies of the Roman Empire
- 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
- 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