Sunday, September 12, 2010

The Name of JOHN

The "official" abandonment of persecution of Christians is dated 313 A.D. Thus it was before this date that Christianity was introduced to our little part of the world. Most likely it was during the reign of Diocletian (248 A.D.) when one of the earliest Christian writers records: "It was the nineteenth year of Diocletian's reign and the month Dystrus, called March by the Romans, and the festival of the Saviour's Passion was approaching, when an imperial decree was published everywhere, ordering the churches to be razed to the ground and the Scriptures destroyed by fire, and giving notice that those in places of honour would lose their places, and domestic staff, if they continued to profess Christianity, would be deprived of their liberty. Such was the first edict against us. Soon afterwards other decrees arrived in rapid succession, ordering that the presidents of the churches in every place should all be first committed to prison and the coerced by every possible means into offering sacrifice. Then it was that many rulers of the churches bore up heroically under horrible torments, and object lesson in endurance of fearful ordeals...each was subjected to a series of different tortures, one flogged unmercifully with the whip, another racked and scraped beyond endurance, so that the lives of some came to a most miserable end."

[taken from The History of The Church by Eusebius written around 325 A.D.]

It was this Christianity that brought with it the name of JOHN.

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