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I. - Roman Empire
A. - Roman Empire: Political, economic, social characteristics.
a. - Many cultures under one emperor, who was powerful and supported by a large army (rule of
might). England, Italy (center), N. Africa, Palestine Turkey, Spain, France.
b. - In its administration, it was Latin, but culturally was Greek. It was built on a super cultural,
with many sub-cultural (Jewish, Egyptian, African ect.)
c. - World wide economy, which allows some to become rich (at the expense of others) and
allowed the rich to become enlightened.
i. - Roads, sea routes, (traveled by armies), postal systems.
ii. - As people travel, ideas travel, which created a cosmopolitan mentality. It makes you
aware that there is diversity, people who are different. AND, implies the thought that I can become like
others, excepting others ideas for myself, thus bettering myself.
B. - Hellenistic Culture
a. - There was a mystical characteristic mentality.
b. - Greek was the common language (for the educated).
c. - Positive view on life, a good to beauty, body, architecture, art = infinite
d. - Negative view, the suffering, the deterging, the now, death = finite
e. - The gods were infinite
f. - Plato - finite = real world, infinite = ideas, Philosophy, the idea of good,
g. - Aristotle - finite = matter (Chair), Infinite = form (material, with the plan brought into does not
make it, but the use of it as a chair finally makes it a chair)
h. - Plotinus - finite = disunity, infinite = unity. The individualism finite but the community is
i. - The way to get from finite to infinite is through education. Once educated, one could view the
finite through the infinite.
j. - It was thought one could reach the infinite through mysticalism (dances, trances).
k. - Religion helped this process. Under the Jewish though, prophets brought forth the infinite
(through laws).
l. - When Christianity came into the Roman world, it could have been shaped by this Hellenistic
thought. Jesus takes the finite people and makes them infinite.
m. - gods of love, oceanic travel. The Greek people were very tolerant of sub-culture, as long as it
did not interfere with the super cultural.
C. - Emperor worship
a. - The Emperor was the head priest, and the governor of the total empire (genius), thus was at the
status of being divine (infinite).
D. - Early Christianity and Gentiles: crises and developments
a. - Based on the Sermon on the Mount (salt and light) dictates that Christianity had to expand to

be Christianity. Salt had to go in to the soup and the light in to the darkness.
b. - After 49 AD, it became clear that Christianity could exceed its current Jewish boundaries, but
it was unsure if the Gentiles could become Christians without become Jewish.
c. - Thus a new religion was born separate of Judaism.
d. - Judaism, spread the OT, the idea of monotheism, the establishment of regular service, which
paved the road for Christianity.
e. - 150 AD, Christianity had spread.
f. - The original 12 were commissioned, and were responsible for the spreading.
g. - Main agent of the spreading were the common Christian (slaves, merchants, trades man).
h. - Methods - sermons, private conversation, worshiping service, lay led interposition of the
i. - The Gospel was a message of love. Christians were hospitable.
j. - Christians were accused of gross moral crimes (body and the blood, brother and sister)
k. - Believed all other religions were wrong,
l. - persecuted by the Jews and then by the local government.
m. - Stressed love and peace
E. - Christian Diversity
a. - Educated and uneducated, slave and free, man and woman.
b. - Palestine - Peter (James) - Matthews - fulfillment of Judaism - the Petri tradition
c. - Osrhoene - Thomas - Gospel of Thomas (the sayings of Jesus) (gnosticism), no congregational
d. - Aegean Sea - Paul - letters of Paul, Theme was "Jesus, Savior of the world",