Week Two: Early Christianity and The Roman Empire Flashcards Preview

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Flashcards in Week Two: Early Christianity and The Roman Empire Deck (34)
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1
Q

when had the Roman Empire reached its ‘zenith’?

A

during the reign of Emperor Trajan 98-117

2
Q

where did christianity originate?

A

Roman province: Judea

3
Q

what was the Roman Empire originally and why did it change?

A

a republic and changed due to political weakness and the need for centralised authority of an emperor

4
Q

what was an emperor

A

the supreme leader of the empire, not called king so as to dissociate from disregarded segments of roman history

5
Q

under which emperor did significant territorial expansion in Egypt ad northern Europe take place?

A

under Augustus

6
Q

why was imperial Egypt so important?

A

provided grain imports which would feed roman population

7
Q

who succeeded Augustus?

A

Tiberius 14-37- ineffectieve leader as he preferred to live in seclusion

8
Q

who stabilised the empire after Tiberius?

A

Trajan

9
Q

what did Trajan do to the city of Rome?

A

major public program to build Rome into an enriched city

10
Q

what was ‘civil religion’?

A

a dead emperor who was worthy of honour was given divine status and was incorporated into the Roman Pantheon. those who refused to take part in the cult were seen as treasonous

11
Q

four things which made the spread of new ideas easy in the Roman Empire:

A

1) common language (latin)
2) ease of transport, over seas and on land
3) freedom of movement for soldiers, administrators, merchants
4) immigration from the colonies to Rome people bringing new ideas and religious beliefs with them

12
Q

where were there distinctions in terms of religion in the Roman Empire?

A

distinction between the state cult and the private religions which took place in houses

13
Q

why did christians find he distinctions in religious practices hard to grasp?

A

they though their alliance which god prevented them from bowing down to the imperial cult and civil religion

14
Q

where did the ‘imperial cult’ originate?

A

for an elevated view of Augustus and his achievements. he could no longer be regarded as just an emperor but as divine and worthy of worship.

15
Q

where was the ‘imperial cult’ especially strong?

A

(Corinth and Galatia) in eastern regions of the empire, where christianity would eventually take route

16
Q

what did the famous letter of Pliny to the younger Trajan state?

A

asking for help in regions where christian were refusing to participate in the practices of the imperial cult

17
Q

what effect did the refusal of christians to worship in the imperial cult have

A

it encouraged the tendency to refer to christians as ‘atheists’

18
Q

a lower social group who followed jewish tradition but were associated with early christians

A

ebionites

19
Q

Marcion of Sinope (c.110-60)

A

rich christian in Rome who thought christianity should sever all associations with judaism

20
Q

what did Marcion of Sinope refer to the God of the new testament as?

A

a war god who had nothing to do with the christian god

21
Q

characterise Marcions canon

A

no works included that were sympathetic to the jewish tradition

22
Q

what was the churches response to Marcions ideas?

A

they were rejected and it was agreed that christianity was a fulfilment of the hopes of pagans, jews and christ

23
Q

what was Justin Martyr’s (103-65) concern?

A

associating christianity with platonism

24
Q

how could Justin martyr see christianity as a philosophy?

A

because philosophy was more than just a set of ideas but rather a way of living as a way of thinking

25
Q

what are the basis of Justin’s ideas?

A
  • christianity bought the quest of the ancient world for wisdom and fulfilment.
  • both jewish law and platonic logos are fulfilled in christ
  • God has sown the seed of wisdom through out the world and so we should expect to find aspects of the gospel in the outside world
26
Q

why did Justin say that christians could draw on the riches of classical culture?

A

because ‘whatever has been said well’ draws on divine wisdom and insight.

27
Q

why did Justin encourage christianity to engage with Plantonism

A

to engage with secular culture using language and ideas that were already familiar to the cultural elite. and also to express their ideas in a coherent and intelligent way that would be understood by these people

28
Q

Tertullian, third century lawyer, christian convert’s response to Justin?

A

christianity but retain a distinctive identity, free from secular ideas

29
Q

why did rumours begin to spread about christian worship and what where they?

A

rumours about christians included orgies and cannibalism because there was no building dedicated to worship and ‘love-feasts’ were misinterpreted in a sexual sense

30
Q

what is the didache (greek for ‘teaching’)

A

a work on how christians gathers on the lord’s day, Sunday, to ‘break bread and give thanks’. the service was understood to be carried out at home, not a public place.

31
Q

what was Justin martyrs first apology?

A

an account of baptism of new christian converts, following this, coverts were led into an assembly of christian believers

32
Q

what is the second event Justin martyr describes?

A

gathering on a Sunday or Monday instead of on the sabbath as this was the day of creation or the day or resurrection

33
Q

what was an epscopos?

A

has a specifically christian meaning, ‘household of faith’

34
Q

how can Roman churches of the second century be described?

A

comparable to roman secular clubs or societies. independent association with no centralised control