The History of Christianity #11
Our Scripture verse today is 2 Corinthians 5:21 which reads: "For he hath made him to be sin for us, who knew no sin; that we might be made the righteousness of God in him."
Our quote today is from Clement of Rome. He said, "Let us look steadfastly to the blood of Christ, and see how precious that blood is to God, which, having been shed for our salvation, has set the grace of repentance before the whole world."
Today, we are discussing "The Fullness of Time" (Part 9) from Justo L. Gonzalez's fine book, The Story of Christianity (Volume 1).
The Greco-Roman World
The syncretism of the times could also have been seen in what historians now call "mystery religions." These were not based on the ancient Olympian deities, but on others which seemed to be much more personal. In earlier times, people generally had followed the religion of their birthplace. But now, after the conquests of Alexander and of Rome, which gods one was to serve became a matter of personal choice. Therefore, one did not belong to a mystery religion by birth, but rather by initiation. Most of these religions were based on myths regarding the origin of the world , the sustenance of life, and the life of the deity. From Egypt came the myth of Isis and Osiris, which explained the fertility of the Nile and all other fertility. Greece contributed rites that from time immemorial had been celebrated near Athens. The cult of Mithra, a god of Indo-Iranian origin, was very popular in the army....
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