The following material is some rough ideas we will be incorporating into this book.

Thirty Years’ War -- Bloody History of Religion

The Thirty Years' War was a series of wars in Europe. It was a ferocious fight basically between Catholic and Protestants and sometimes between Protestants. Rulers tried to use force to impose their religious views on their own subjects and then on other kingdoms. Hundreds of thousands of men in armies plundered as they marched over Europe, leaving cities, villages and farms ravaged. This incredible bloodshed came to an end in 1648 in the German province of Westphalia after everyone was exhausted.

Early Christians

The early Christians often exhibited such strange behavior that they caused the general population to fear them. Patriotism was almost a religion of Rome and many Christians seemed not to care about the empire and longed to be in heaven with Jesus.

Today, they would be called a cult who have glassy eyes and seem holier than thou and not of this evil world, but caring only for the future world. The Romans, like Americans, were a practical people and couldn’t understand the Christians obsession with some carpenter who had been jailed and received capital punishment for being a threat to law and order. And law-and-order was just about everything to a Roman.

America is so practical that even when they witness a lot like the Mormons and Jehovah Witnesses they do it with the organizational skills of IBM or some corporation that is rational and planned.

These Christians just didn’t seem to fit in. What really amazed the Romans was that Christians so often seemed to want the Romans to persecute them. They wanted martyrs and to leave this earth the same way their leader did - a gruesome torture. They would like the Heaven’s gate cult in which they blissfully killed themselves seeing a brighter future away from this sordid earth.

The Christians fearlessness and zombie like attitude toward torture moved some people to be converted and some to help them as some gentiles helped to hide Jews in Europe who were criminals just because they were Jews. Christians were seen a evil just because they were Christians. They were considered guilty and were not given a fair trial as other citizens were. But mostly Christians scared the majority. In the book Martyrs and Rome we read of an instance of a Roman governor who actually got so exasperated at a bunch of Christians and tried to stop them from being so anxious to commit suicide:

"Towards the end of the reign of the Roman emperor Commodus, in the last years of the decade of the 180s AD, a Roman governor in the province of Asia was conducting his normal judicial activities when a throng of excited people pushed forward to stand before his tribunal. Without provocation or prior accusation they all voluntarily declared themselves to be Christians, and by this declaration they presumably showed themselves unwilling to sacrifice to the Roman emperor – a test to which governors regularly put professing Christians. The pious mob encouraged the governor to do his duty and consign them all promptly to death. He obligingly had a few of them led away to execution; but, as the remainder clamored ever more loudly to be granted the same reward, he cried out to the petitioners in exasperation, ‘You wretches, if you want to die, you have cliffs to leap from and ropes to hang by.’"

Christians have not always been just crazy for God, but simply crazy and slowed down God’s effort to use them to convert the world.

We read, "Voluntary martyrdom astonished the pagans, as well it might. Marcus Aurelius was not the only thoughtful person of the age who contemplated with incredulity what he saw going on around him. Celsus, the author of a highly sophisticated and detailed tract on the Christians, came to the conclusion that the Christians were simply out of their minds – insane – because they ‘deliberately’ rushed forward to arouse the anger of an emperor or a governor in order to bring upon themselves blows, torture, and even death. Half a century later the Christian apologist Origen attempted to answer this criticism of Celsus, but he found very little to say because such conduct was widespread and, in many quarters, admired."

"Although Origen claimed that the Christians were doing nothing ‘contrary to the law and word of God,’ the spread of voluntary martyrdoms had become so alarming to many thoughtful churchmen that they gradually developed a sharp distinction between solicited martyrdom and the more traditional kind that came as a result of persecution. Clement of Alexandria, Origen, Cyprian, and Lactanius, all great spokesmen of the early Church, attempted to stop this enthusiasm and reserve the ranks of the martyrs for those who endured suffering and death in the face of persecution. But the efforts of leading intellectuals and dignitaries did little to stop the enthusiasm. By the end of the fourth century the Christian writer Sulpicius Severus observed wryly that the martyrs of the early Church desired death even more eagerly than clergymen desired a bishopric."

It seems evident that the earliest authentic martyrs suffered torture and death at the hands of Roman officials who were determined to enforce the traditional worship of the Roman emperors and to root out what seemed a seditious new cult. Those martyrs had received much recognition and were believed to have found so great a reward in death that others clearly wanted to emulate them. As Gibbon remarked with characteristically pungent turn of phrase, ‘The assurance of a lasting reputation upon earth, a motive so congenial to the vanity of human nature, often served to animate the courage of the martyrs.’ For true martyrs were forgiven their sins and did indeed acquire a lasting reputation upon earth."

"There can be no doubt that among the Christians an intense and seemingly irrational desire to die at the hands of persecutors antedated the creation of the terminology that transformed the common word for ‘witness.’ Consider, for example, Ignatius of Antioch in the early second century. He would undoubtedly qualify as a voluntary martyr in terms of his actions. When he was taken from Antioch on the Syrian coast to Rome for execution, he was allowed to stop in Smyrna in Asia Minor. There he communicated with the principal churches of the region, and he wrote a letter to the Christians at Rome begging them not to do anything that would prevent his being given to the wild beasts when he arrived there. He displayed in his writing what has been described as a ‘pathological yearning for martyrdom.’ But his language nowhere includes the word. He says that he is in love with death, and he anticipates with joy the tortures that lie ahead: ‘Come, fire and cross, and encounters with beasts, incisions and dissections, wrenching of bones, hacking of limbs, crushing of the whole body.’ In one of his most famous metaphors he expressed his hope of being ‘ground by the teeth of wild beasts’ into ‘the pure bread’ of Christ. Yet with all this, Ignatius betrays no knowledge of the language or concept of martyrdom. But he certainly longed for death."

Christians often were impatient to die when being held in prisons: "enthusiasm for martyrdom was no less apparent among some who, when condemned to die, betrayed impatience in waiting for their ultimate dissolution. In the narrative of the Martyrdom of Polycarp, we hear of the most noble Germanicus, who, when condemned to fight with wild beasts, rebuked the emperor who tried to dissuade him from self-destruction by dragging an animal directly on top of himself. In this way, says the writer, the noble Germanicus chose to be liberated all the more quickly from an unjust and lawless life. In an early version of the Martyrdom of Agathonike, the martyr takes off her clothes and throws herself voluntarily upon the pyre."

"Such enthusiasm for martyrdom is mirrored in the frequent reports of radiant joy, smiles, and even laughter among the Christians on their way to a martyr’s death. During the interrogation of Pionios, his companion Sabina smiled when Pionios said that it was far worse to burn after death than to be burned alive. The temple warden was astonished by his reaction and asked incredulously, ‘You are laughing?’ Whereupon she replied confidently, ‘If God so wills, yes. We are Christians, and those who believe in Christ will laugh unhesitatingly in everlasting joy.’ Pionios himself, who was normally of a conspicuously pale complexion, turned positively ruddy with joy as he approached his own martyrdom. When Pamphylus was nailed to a stake, he was seen to look happy and smiling, and in response to a question he answered, ‘I saw the glory of my God, and I rejoiced that I was free.’ The Carthanginian martyr Perpetua declared, in her account of her condemnation, that, when she and her companions were sentenced to death, they returned to the prison in high spirits. Her good cheer continued as she went to her death: ‘Perpetua went with a shining countenance and calm step.’"

"Eagerness for martyrdom not only maintained the martyrs in good spirits. It could make them laugh, to the great discomfort of governors. The martyrs could even be moved to make jokes. Prudentius, in his lyric verses on the crowns of martyrdom, tells the famous story of Lawrence, who addressed his judge from the grill on which he was being roasted: ‘This part of my body has been burned long enough,’ he announced. ‘Turn it round, and try what your hot god of fire has done.’ When the prefect then has the martyr turned over, he is reported to have said, ‘It is done. Eat it up and try whether it is better raw or roasted.’ Prudentius acknowledges that these words were spoken in jest. But after they were uttered Lawrence looked up to heaven and reverently prayed.

"The desire for death on the part of martyrs and would-be martyrs was attentively observed by the pagans and must have been a constant source of wonder to them. Even the Christians at Rome might have been surprised in the time of Trajan to receive Ignatius’s impassioned plea to them not to block his death among the wild animals. (He obviously thought that his co-religionists could – and would – have interceded on his behalf.) The second-century satirist Lucian well reflects the situation in his account of the Christian phase of the flamboyant charlatan Peregrinus. Lucian tells us that as a Christian Peregrinus felt a great longing to die; and, in what is almost a parody of a scene from a Martyr Act, the satirist describes the imprisonment of Peregrinus, the visitations to the would-be martyr from the faithful, and the eagerness with which many volunteered to go to their death along with him. On the other hand, the governor of Syria, who was presiding over this case, realized that the most effective penalty he could impose on such a person was simply to release him. And so, cannily, he set Peregrinus free precisely because he wanted to die. This is Lucian’s pungent and possibly historical version of the old joke that has the masochist say to the sadist, ‘Hit me,’ and the sadist replying, ‘No.’"

"All these scenes suggest that for many, if not most, martyrs and would-be martyrs, their enthusiasm for death comes very close to a desire to commit suicide – a suicide to be arranged by an external agent but with the clear complicity of the victim. The last moments of Perpetua in the amphitheater at Carthage, as described by the Latin narrator, illustrate this well: "She took the trembling hand of the gladiator and guided it to her throat. Perhaps so great a woman could not have been killed ... if she herself had not wanted it.’"

"However much some leaders of the Church attempted to dissuade volunteers for death in the Christian cause, the example of Arrius Antoninus’s tribunal and many references in the Martyr Acts to eager postulants for martyrdom show that the message simply did not get through."


One book says, "The most pressing need of all cannot be legislated – for how does one pass laws compelling a human being to be compassionate and have a sense of justice? The nightmare of Ulster has come about with Christian fighting Christian in one of the most advanced of Western societies. Continuation of this travesty with God can lead to the eclipse of civilization in that part of the world." This shows that Christianity is bankrupt as an ideology that can solve the problems of society. It has some magnificent truths and it is lacking and even wrong in other areas of life.


For many people Christianity is not only a ridiculous science fiction ideology but it teaches that God is horrible. IT is seen as grotesque religion. To illustrate this view a professor who wrote a book analyzing Milton’s Paradise Lost denounces Christianity saying, "Young people often join a Church because they think it is the only way to avoid becoming a Communist, without realizing that a Renaissance Christian State was itself usually a thorough-going police terror.... I think the traditional God of Christianity very wicked."

He says that when he spent ten years in Japan and China teaching Milton at government universities he "gathered that those of my students who became interested in Paradise Lost, though too polite to express their opinion to me quite directly, thought ‘Well, if they worship such a monstrously wicked God as all that, no wonder that they themselves are so monstrously wicked as we have traditionally found them.’ Most Christians are so imprisoned by their own propaganda that they can scarcely imagine this reaction." He writes, "‘brainwashing’ is not a new scientific invention, and Hitler had no opportunity to use ‘the technique of the biggest lie’ as grandly as the Christians – since they worship as the source of all goodness a God who, as soon as you are told the basic story about him, is evidently the Devil."

He goes to write, "Survivors of the Nazi concentration camps agree that the most powerful technique used there for the destruction of human conscience and personality was a more subtle one than might be expected in so brutal a setting; each of the starving and tormented prisoners was tempted, by the offer of very small alleviations, to take a share in torturing his fellows." Then he compares Christians who are same because they have the vicious belief that only they will survive because they are with God and all the rest will be tortured forever: "this is what Christians ... regard as heaven; if they take the vaunted ‘logic’ of their system seriously. They must sit beside God for all eternity and watch almost all the people they have loved on earth being tortured by God and they must incessantly praise God for his mercy."

"The Christian God the Father, the God of Tertullian, Augustine and Aquinas, is the wickedest thing yet invented by the black heart of man."

The speed with which Christianity developed, especially during its first thirty to fifty years, is unprecedented and indeed remains something of a sociohistorical enigma.

Government persecution of Christians. Practically everyone has heard about the terrible persecutions of the Christians at the hands of Roman officials. The Roman government tolerated any religion which did not threaten the safety or tranquillity of the state or interfere with the worship of the emperor. Roman officials had no quarrel with a person’s religious preference as long as he was willing to take part in the ceremonies of state cults. The worship of the emperor was a patriotic rite uniting all Roman subjects in common loyalty to the Roman government. The Christians, however, would have nothing to do with state religious ceremonies. To them there was only one God; no other could share their loyalty to Him. In the eyes of the Roman officials this attitude branded the Christians as unpatriotic.

In addition, the Christians would not engage in military service and refused to accept political office. They also were criticized because of their fierce intolerance of other religious sects, which often led to religious riots. They would not associate with their pagan relatives and refused to participate in social functions, which they thought sinful or degrading.

In the face of these facts the emperors inaugurated persecution against the Christians, not because of intolerance of belief but because they seemed to threaten the very existence of the state. Marcus Aurelius was one of the most determined foes of the new religion. In the third century a series of severe persecutions was carried out. The first wide spread campaign against the Christians was carried out by the emperor Decius in 249, and the last by Diocletian in 303.

Official recognition and acceptance. It soon became apparent that there was to be no stamping out of the new religion by force. In fact, the Christians seemed to welcome martyrdom, and the "blood of the martyrs became the seed of the church." In 311 the emperor Galerius issued an edict of toleration, and two years later, by the Edict of Milan, Constantine raised Christianity to the status of legalized religion, on a par with all pagan cults. In his struggle for imperial

Early church organization. For a half century after the death of Christ there was little organization in the Christian movement. The earliest converts saw no necessity for organization, for they regarded their present world as only a temporary thing which would speedily end with the Second Coming of their Lord. But Christ did not appear, and the Christians gradually had to adjust themselves to the practical fact that since hundreds of years might elapse before the Second Coming it was essential to develop a definite church organization.

"religious wars"

religious quarrels, resulting in some of the bloodiest and most prolonged warfare in human history. The founder of the Christian religion had given as a primary command, "Thou shalt love thy neighbor as thyself." But there was no brotherhood between Catholic and Protestant.

Thomas More, the writer of Utopia, "For a long time he wore a horsehair shirt next to his skin; now and then it drew enough blood to visibly stain his clothing."

No saying in American political literature has been more hotly debated than "that all men are equal." Jefferson did not mean that all men are created equal in ability, physique or talent. He meant the are equal in the eyes of God and law.

He said his purpose in writing the Declaration of Independence was "to place before mankind the common sense of the subject, in terms so plain and firm as to command their assent." America respects common sense. He said he drew upon books by such authors as "Aristotle, Cicero, Locke, etc."

Trinity is the greatest mystery of Christian thought.

God wanted republics, not the Divine right of kings.

do I need any of this material?  Think about it.  Maybe later:  I'm storing it here:

God introduced democracy in the Greek city states in the 6th century B.C.

Romans were a practical people. They introduced Roman law.

In 44 B.C. Julius Caesar became dictator. A group of senators murdered him hoping to restore the republic. Cicero was not part of the conspiracy but he was a spokesman for the republic. Rome had law-and-order. Slavery grew, like in America, and this was a bad condition for Rome.

Rome was governed by the Senate, originally a group of 100 men from the upper class. At other times there were more. Each year citizens voted in an election, known as an Assembly, to select senators to be government officials.

In an emergency they picked a dictator who could rule for a maximum of six months.

Octavius in 27 B.C. offered to return control of the state to the Senate and the people. But he was given a new name, Augustus which means "revered one." He was the first Roman emperor. The period of Roman history from his rule onwards is known as the Empire, to distinguish it from the Republic before it.

He formed a system of government in which the Senate and the emperor worked together.

Some bad emperors came such as Caligula who married his sister and then murdered her. He was cruel. Nero was a tyrant who killed members of his own family and blamed Christians for a fire that devastated the city of Rome.

The Senate became weak. Rome divided into areas called provinces. Laws were a mixture of Roman and local customs were taken into account. The respected some of the customs and laws of each province they conquered.   They set local levels of taxation. The Provinces were mostly left to govern themselves.

Spartacus led slaves in revolt in 72 B.C. but was defeated. God wanted the Romans to end slavery.

Under Diocletian the Senate lost all authority. He declared himself a God. It was darkest before the dawn. He prevented freedom of movement.

Rome had rulers who were interested in personal power and wealth after Theodocius.

The people stopped caring about Rome and didn't want to fight the barbarians because they no longer had any faith in a Roman government that kept taxing them and restricting their freedom.

Dictator Caesar tried to replace the Republic with a monarchy. The Roman Empire was born under Octavius and so was Jesus.

Rome was constantly at war. In its early days the Romans took great care not to oppress the tribes and cities they controlled. They knew that harsh rule might lead to dangerous rebellions.

The Senate gave Rome leadership. In law, the people ruled Rome.

In its early history, Senators made huge fortunes taxing inhabitants. Before, men had served Rome without any thought of gain. But suddenly, a career in politics became the pathway to vast riches.

Cicero was unable to prevent the overthrow of the Republican system of government.

Augustus preferred to be known as the "First Citizen." He laid aside the special powers he had held during the civil war and re-started the yearly elections. The Romans were so grateful to him for bringing peace they gave him the title Augustus – meaning "Revered One." He could have been a dictator but he brought back the ways of government of the Republic. This made him even more popular. He reformed the government by getting rid of unworthy, lazy senators. He made it easier for provinces to appeal to Rome if they suffered from bad government.

"In Rome, he lived simply and treated his fellow-citizens as equals. Despite his great power he listened respectfully to the advice of the Senate and was careful to follow the laws. He worked hard to bring back the old-fashioned Roman virtues – respect for the gods, hard work, and duty." He spent even his own money to build public buildings. He was into learning and "gathered around him a group of artists, writers, and poets – including Virgil, whose long poem, the Aeneid, glorified the history of Rome."