Christianity And Its Relationship With Political Authority

1196 WordsFeb 22, 20175 Pages
Christianity and its relationship with political authority has changed over the course of the period we have studied this semester. There has been a lot of back and forth about the main religion in the countries we have studied, and predominantly in Rome. The main religion of a country is traced back to the religion of the political authority. Citizens looked up to their rulers, therefore convert to the religion of the authority. Initially, Romans viewed Christianity as a new sect of Judaism. Roman rulers did not like the religion of Christianity. By the end of the first century, the political authority viewed the religion as a dangerous superstition that was a threat to their civic order. Romans didn’t like the fact that Christians…show more content…
Constantius’ reign and the Council of Nicea helped Rome in gaining more Christians since they were under the rule of a Christian ruler. This did not last long as a Pagan ruler followed. In 361, emperor Julian came into power and restored Paganism in the Roman Empire. Julian felt the need to restore Paganism. His goal was to rid Christians from the highest orders of government. He did not want any Christian judges so that no Christian laws would be passed. Julian targeted the wealthy Christians as he was not as concerned with the common people. He believed that if he could get Christians out of political power, people would convert back to Paganism. This time in history brought Pagan conversions and Pagan members of political authority. After Julian was killed in battle in 363, his successor came into power to restore Christianity. He passed laws that made worshipping Pagan gods punishable by death. Christianity went from the minority religion to the majority religion in fifty years due to converts in favor of the religion of their political leaders. Christian law remained unchanged until 382 because Rome was in a crisis. This was extremely influential in gaining Christian converts. Christianity lost popularity for a little while after the fall of Rome. The Fall of Rome brought many crises to the empire and people were looking for a scapegoat. Pagans blamed Christians for the fall. Since Christianity had become so
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