CH101 - The Second Century

The Persecuted Church, 90 - 202 A.D.

Key People:
Clement of Rome
Ignatius of Antioch
Justin Martyr
Irenaeus of Lyons
Clement of Alexandria

The Spirit of Martyrdom
From the time when "godly men buried Stephen" after he was executed by the Jews, martyrs were treated with great respect. Martyrs, or "confessors," were believed to have a greater degree of grace from God. There were reports (although some might be considered questionable) that miracles were performed through martyrs: bones (relics) could be used for healing, confessors sitting in prison were reported to have heavenly visions and personal audience with the risen Lord - these could offer prayers of special power, and could even grant confirmation of God's forgiveness.

By the middle of the second century pockets of the Church had followers desiring martyrdom to the point of throwing themselves in the way of Roman officials, hoping to be selected for the "perfecting" of their faith, execution. This careless attitude had become commonplace enough that Clement of Alexandria urges believers not to offer themselves to their persecutors, but to flee.

Bishops of the second century found their authority being challenged by imprisoned confessors. People were flocking to imprisoned saints seeking empowered prayer and forgiveness for sins. During times of intense persecution many believers "lapsed" into various levels of their former sinful lives, then wanted to come back to the church. Each region had its own method of repentance, which typically depending on the local bishop. When lapsed believers started approaching, and gaining forgiveness through imprisoned confessors the authority of the bishop suffered.

Questions, Comments or Criticisms:
You can send an email to directly to me Al Baker, CH101.
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- was athanasius black
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- worship on sunday
- origen and universalism
- water baptism
- wine in ancient world
- fathers on NT Revelation
- fathers on holiness
- fathers on the military
- apostolic succession
- palestine or israel?
- candles in church
- pagan influences
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Book Reviews
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Biblical Issues
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- who wrote NT Hebrews
- the trinity
- the apocrypha
- saul the persecutor
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- NT and tithing
- Is the NT inspired?
- wine in the bible

Culture and Opinion
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- faith and certainty
- end of the spear

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Second Century Church History
Second Century Church History
Roman Persecution of Christians
Early Church Martyrs - Roman Empire
Second Repentance - Hermas, Tertullian
Apostolic Fathers - Justin, Ignatius, Barnabas
1 Clement, Didache, Barnabas, Ignatius, Polycarp
Second Century Christians and Heresies
Heresies: Docetism, Marcion, Montanus
Gnosticism - Nag Hammadi Texts
Intro to Gnostic Writings
Gnostic Writings - Nag Hammadi
New Testament Canon - NT Canon
Apostolic Fathers and Heresies
Early Church Heresies
Second Century Christian Apologists
Irenaeus Tertullian Justin Martyr
Tertullian, Justin Martyr, Clement of Alexandria,
Questions 2nd Century Church History
How the NT was Formed
New Testament Canon, Canonized
Questions regarding Christian Issues
Early Church Heresies
First Century Persecution
1st Century Persecution of Christians
Gnosticism in the 1st Century Early Church
Early Church History of Galations
Early Christianity War and Conflict
Early Christianity Constantine and War
Important Issues in Early Christianity