American Minute with Bill Federer May 1 - The Emperor resigns!
American Minute with Bill Federer
May 1 - The Emperor resigns!
MAY 1, 305 AD, the most powerful man in the world, Emperor Diocletian, stepped down from ruling the Roman Empire.
Roman government committed ten major persecutions of Christians in the
first three centuries, similar to today's persecution of Christians in
atheistic, Communist and Muslims countries where an average of 500
Christians are martyred every day.
Diocletian lost battles in Persia, his Roman pagan leaders told him it
was because they had neglected the Roman gods. Diocletian ordered all
military personnel to worship the Roman gods.
it had been over a decade since the last persecution, many Christians
served in the military, but now they were forced out or into the
With the Christian conscience silenced, Diocletian used the military to force all of Rome to worship pagan gods.
resulted in the most intolerant, severe persecution of Christians to
date, with Diocletian's military systematically, province by province,
arresting church leaders, burning scriptures, destroying churches,
cutting out tongues, decapitating and boiling alive.
From Europe to North Africa, thousands were martyred. The faithful cried out in prayer.
Suddenly, Diocletian was struck with a painful intestinal disease and resigned on MAY 1, 305 AD.
Emperor Gelarius continued the persecution, but was also struck with the intestinal disease and died.
Finally, in 313 AD, Emperor Constantine ended the persecution of Christians.
on Roman persecutions, Secretary of State William Jennings Bryan, the
Democrat Party's candidate for President in 1896, 1900, and 1908, with
his statue in the U.S. Capitol, stated in his speech, "The Prince of
Peace," (New York Times, September 7, 1913):
can imagine that the early Christians who were carried into the
Coliseum to make a spectacle for those more savage than the beasts,
were entreated by their doubting companions not to endanger their
lives. But, kneeling in the center of the arena, they prayed and sang
until they were devoured.
helpless they seemed, and, measured by every human rule, how hopeless
was their cause! And yet within a few decades the power which they
invoked proved mightier than the legions of the Emperor, and the faith
in which they died was triumphant o'er all the land....
They were greater conquerors in their death than they could have been had they purchased life."
Of the Roman Coliseum, President Ronald Reagan stated at the National Prayer Breakfast, February 2, 1984:
power of prayer can be illustrated by the story that goes back to the
fourth century - the monk [Telemachus] living in a little remote
village, spending most of his time in prayer...One day he thought he
heard the voice of God telling him to go to Rome...
and weeks later, he arrived...at a time of a festival in Rome...He
followed a crowd into the Coliseum, and then, there in the midst of this
great crowd, he saw the gladiators come forth, stand before the
Emperor, and say, 'We who are about to die salute you.' And he realized
they were going to fight to the death for the entertainment of the
cried out, 'In the Name of Christ, stop!' And his voice was lost in
the tumult there in the great Colosseum. And as the games began, he
made his way down through the crowd and climbed over the wall and
dropped to the floor of the arena.
the crowds saw this scrawny little figure making his way out to the
gladiators and saying, over and over again, 'In the Name of Christ,
they thought it was part of the entertainment, and at first they were
amused. But then, when they realized it wasn't, they grew belligerent
and angry. And as he was pleading with the gladiators, 'In the Name of
Christ, stop!' one of them plunged his sword into his body.
And as he fell to the sand of the arena in death, his last words were, 'In the Name of Christ, stop!'
suddenly, a strange thing happened. The gladiators stood looking at
this tiny form lying in the sand. A silence fell over the Colosseum. And
then, someplace up in the upper tiers, an individual made his way to
an exit and left, and the others began to follow. And in the dead
silence, everyone left the Colosseum.
was the last battle to the death between gladiators in the Roman
Colosseum. Never again did anyone kill or did men kill each other for
the entertainment of the crowd.
tiny voice that could hardly be heard above the tumult. 'In the Name
of Christ, stop!' It is something we could be saying to each other
throughout the world today."
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