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Persecution Comparison

Throughout the history of the world, the minority group of people has been persecuted by
the majority group. This is also true in the Bible. For example, in Egypt, the Jews were the
minority group and they were persecuted by the Egyptians. The majority group would always
want to assert their authority over the minority in order change them and form what they thought
in their eyes was the perfect society. However, they did not realize that this would be their utmost
downfall because when persecution occurs, the group being persecuted most often wants to rebel
and fight for what they believe in. This is the case in the time of the early Church, the French
Revolution, and even in the world today. In this paper, I will compare the persecutions of the
Christians of the early Church, the Church of the French Revolution, and the Church of today.
After the Death and Resurrection of Christ, the Roman Empire was in a frenzy. Roman
officials, along with members of the Sanhedrin and Jewish hierarchy who were so anxious to see
Christ be put to death, baffled over the fact that He rose from the dead. This made them want to
find the Apostles who were hiding from them to escape persecution. Although, at Pentecost, the
Holy Spirit descended upon them and they were filled with the Holy Spirit. This made them want
to go and spread the word despite the risk of being persecuted. Many of them left Judea and
traveled throughout the known world. Some were killed for their faith (becoming martyrs) while
others had success in converting people. The apostles and Disciples of Christ knew that what
they were doing was dangerous, but they did it anyway. They spread the good news because its
what had to be done. The world would not learn about Christ and his teachings without people
preaching about it. The early Christians defied persecution, established the early Church, and laid
the foundation for generations to come.

During the French Revolution, Christians were persecuted for their faith. The weird thing
is that before the revolution started, Catholicism was the official religion of France. Although,
the Church in France had a lot of power and money and revolutionaries wanted to change this.
They wanted to make the Church subject to state and organized by the state too. To do this, they
proposed to the National Assembly the idea that all the property of the Church belongs to the
state. This was passed and the de-Christianization movement began. Monasteries were closed
and there was a civil election of priests and bishops. Jurors were priests who took the public oath
of loyalty to the state. Refractory priests refused to take this oath and were forced to flee. The
state then banned religious garb, prohibited religious orders, and killed hundreds of refractory
priests. At this point, the Church was forced to move underground. The state closed the churches
and banned worship. This de-Christianization movement continued until the end of the
revolution. After the revolution, people like Blessed William Joseph Chaminade came out of
hiding and began the re-Christianization movement.
Some people may think that persecution is over, but they are wrong. There is still
religious persecution going on in the world today. ISIS and other terrorist groups continue to kill
Christians in brutal ways just for the sake of being Christian. They travel from town to town in
the Middle East looking for people that are a part of the minority Christian group. They capture
them, brutally torture them, and eventually kill them. Their goal is to eliminate the Christians and
other groups of people from that part of the world, and eventually, maybe even the whole world.
Although, history is known to repeat itself. Many groups have tried to eliminate minority groups
of people, but most times, they have failed (Ex: Adolf Hitler and the Nazis).

All Christians being persecuted, whether two thousand years ago or today, have a
something in common. This is that they all continue to fight, physically and mentally, no matter
what happens to them. They realize that God is with them and he will always be. They are aware
that all things are possible with God. They also realize that this world is just temporary; heaven
is eternal. If you have a strong faith in God and follow His teachings and commandments, then
there is a good chance you will get to heaven. The people being persecuted realize this and do
not care how much suffering they will have to go through on Earth. They know that there is
something greater waiting for them in heaven. The apostles and disciples faced crucifixion, the
Christians during the French Revolution faced the guillotine, and Christians being persecuted in
the world today face being beheaded. None of these sound like good ways to die, but when you
have faith in God and fully place your trust in Him, the fear just slips away.