The ‘Christian Persecution Complex’ revealed

“In The Myth of Persecution, Candida Moss, a leading expert on early Christianity, reveals how the early church exaggerated, invented, and forged stories of Christian martyrs and how the dangerous legacy of a martyrdom complex is employed today to silence dissent and galvanize a new generation of culture warriors.

According to cherished church tradition and popular belief, before the Emperor Constantine made Christianity legal in the fourth century, early Christians were systematically persecuted by a brutal Roman Empire intent on their destruction. As the story goes, vast numbers of believers were thrown to the lions, tortured, or burned alive because they refused to renounce Christ. These saints, Christianity’s inspirational heroes, are still venerated today.

Moss, however, exposes that the “Age of Martyrs” is a fiction there was no sustained 300-year-long effort by the Romans to persecute Christians. Instead, these stories were pious exaggerations; highly stylized rewritings of Jewish, Greek, and Roman noble death traditions; and even forgeries designed to marginalize heretics, inspire the faithful, and fund churches.

The traditional story of persecution is still taught in Sunday school classes, celebrated in sermons, and employed by church leaders, politicians, and media pundits who insist that Christians were and always will be persecuted by a hostile, secular world. While violence against Christians does occur in select parts of the world today, the rhetoric of persecution is both misleading and rooted in an inaccurate history of the early church. Moss urges modern Christians to abandon the conspiratorial assumption that the world is out to get Christians and, rather, embrace the consolation, moral instruction, and spiritual guidance that these martyrdom stories provide.”


Categories: Christianity, History

5 replies

  1. What about the medal Emperor Diocletian struck where he celebrated the extermination of Chrustianity. Likewise he had two monuments erected in what was newly conquered Spain, celebrating the end of Christianity. What a fool he was!!! You ate writing like those who attempt to say the holocausrust was a Jewish invention!


  2. Sorry, the last sentence should read, ‘ You are writing like those who say that the Holocaust was a Jewish fabrication!’


    • Not at all. Holocaust denial is universally rejected and condemned by mainstream historians.

      In The Myth of Persecution, Candida Moss, Professor of New Testament and Early Christianity, demonstrates how the early church exaggerated, invented, and forged stories of Christian martyrs. Her conclusions are not controversial in the academic world (see reviews on the back cover) and are widely accepted, being based on good historical evidence.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Paul,

    Thanks for posting. Please check out this article on the Invention on Peter (that is the invention of him going to Rome and founding a church in Rome) by Professor Candida Moss.

    The article is on a book called The Invention of Peter by Fordan University Theology Professor George Demacopoulos.

    Liked by 2 people

  4. Starting to see the Karaites point of view after reading this.


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