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Cities of God
Created for HIST 101 by David Hudson at Texas A&M
Terms in this set (114)
Can a historian ever fully know the truth about past events? (p2)
What is the root word of the word pagan? (p2)
Rural person, or more colloquially, country hick
How many cities had a population of 30,000 or more in the Roman Empire in AD 100? (p2)
Is conversion truly possible in a polytheistic society? (p3)
When a Methodist becomes a Lutheran, is that a conversion? (p4)
No, it is a reaffiliation
Did Amenhotep IV rely on conversion to promulgate his monotheism? (p4)
No, he relied on degrading existing polytheism
Was Judaism ever a missionary faith - did it actively seek converts? (p5)
Yes. In fact it was the first!
What language was spoken in the synagogues established by the Jews of the Diaspora? (p6)
What proportion of the population of the Roman Empire was Jewish? (p6)
For the most parts, were Jews in the Roman Empire rural or urban? (p6)
Urban: Approximately 90% lived in cities outside of Palestine
Was it possible to be a Greek Jew, or a Roman Jew, or a Persian Jew? (p7)
No. You had to be Jew Jew.
Was there an ethnic requirement to being a Christian? (p7)
What was the traditional assumption regarding how religious conversions occurred? (p8)
People converted due to "Doctrinal Appeal"
What is doctrinal appeal? (p8)
When a new faith has appeal to someone because of its worldview and ethics
Friedrich Engels asserted that the earliest Christian converts were recruited from what group of people? (p8)
Slaves, emancipated slaves, and poor people deprived of all rights
Is there any evidence that early Christian converts came from the upper classes? (p9)
Yes. In fact there is evidence that it may have even been a majority, despite the religion's appeal to the poor.
What did the 1962 sociological study determine was the actual mechanism for religious conversion? (p10)
Interpersonal ties to others within the group
If a person admired a religious doctrine but his friends and family disapprove of the religion, is that person likely to convert?
What did Pagans think was so sinister about Christian recruiting practices in the Roman Empire? (p14)
They utilized existing social ties and seemed personally invasive
How is that scientific historians can conclude that substantial portions of the New Testament were made up? (p16)
There is little to no archaeological evidence, certain portions don't make any sense,
Why did Hans Conzelmann say that the events in the Acts of the Apostles never happened? (p16)
They have no evidence and are implausible
What distinguished Rome and Alexandria among cities of the Roman Empire? (p26)
They had more than 150,000 residents
How dense were Rome and Antioch? (p27)
130-300 people an acre
What four disasters commonly struck Roman cities? (p26)
Crime (like, Mogadishu style crime)
What contributed to the risk of fires in Roman cities? (p27)
High density residences
Structures made of wood and organic material
Were underground or street-level sewers more common in Roman cities? (p28)
What are two flaws in the theory that Christianity drew most of its appeal by promising a pleasant afterlife to Roman city folk
suffering from the deprivations of life? (p30)
It relies on a lot of "must have" assumptions
There is no evidence to suggest life got any worse in the 3rd century
Did Christianity do anything to reduce suffering in the real world? (pp30-31)
Yes. Members often tended to the sick, concerned themselves with slaves, and supported the elderly, sick, and orphans
How did Emperor Julian recognize that his renewed paganism had to compete with Christianity? (p31)
He recognized that for paganism to be popular it would have to compete with the benevolence offered by Christians
Were pagan temples financially supported very well? (p32-33)
Yes. Usually by wealthy independent donors
Does competition strengthen or weaken a polytheistic religion, and how? (p33)
Weaken. The Gods within the religion must compete with one another causing discord among believers
In what city did Origen and Eusebius live (p36)
Paul had his conversion experience on the road to what city? (37)
What was the earliest Roman city to have a large population of Christians who were not originally Jewish? (p38)
What might be called the first "Christian State?" (39)
Why was Paul disappointed with Athens? (p49)
He could not convince the pagans there because they were too tied up in philosophy.
Paul wrote a "lucid primer of basic Christianity" in his epistles to which Greek city? (pp51-52)
How did Rome's Christian community grow? (pp52-53)
It appears it grew simply out of the migration of Christians to Rome from Palestine and Syria
What was a common early explanation for why Christianity grew so large so quickly? (p65)
What are four good reasons for rejecting theories of mass conversion to explain why Christianity grew so quickly? (p65)
Theology, sociology, history, arithmetic
Was travel easier in the Roman Empire or in 15th
-century Europe? (pp73-74)
Were Roman roads well designed for the transport of goods? (p74)
What was the typical travel time by boat from Egypt to Rome? (p75)
What is Stark's hypothesis regarding port cities and Christianity? (p76)
Port cities tended to be Christianized faster than inland cities
Is it a surprise that Stark found that the closer a city was to Jerusalem, the more quickly it had a Christian congregation?
What language were most Christian scriptures written in? (p78)
Which were more likely to have Christian churches: "Roman" cities, or "Greek" cities? (p79)
What were the three ways that oriental religions appealed to the people of Rome? (p80)
1. Appealed more strongly to the senses
2. Appealed to the individual rather than the community
3. Satisfied the intellect with scripture and virtuous gods
Was worship in traditional Roman paganism a very emotional experience? (p87)
Which religions placed the greater emphasis on morality: Greek and Roman polytheism, or the oriental religions? (p88)
Did the Greek and Roman polytheistic religions have holy scriptures? (p89)
No, although they did have written philosphies
Why were all the priests of Cybele eunuchs? (p90-91)
Because Attis, Cybele's mythological partner, did it too
How did Cybele aid Rome in war? (p91)
Her prophecy "helped" Rome defeat Hannibal
How did the priests of Cybele offend good order in Rome? (p92)
They were cross-dressing effeminates
Were there atheists in the ancient world? (p96)
Yes, although not openly
What was Plato's Demiurge? (p98)
A lower God below a supreme being who created and oversaw the world but had limited powers
Did ancient philosophers such as Plato and Aristotle attempt to sort out whether there were just one or many gods? (p98)
What did Ptolemy I instruct Manetho and Timotheus to do? (p100)
Consolidate the Gods and their functions
What or who was Serapis? (p100)
A "Supreme God" created to help export polytheism to more monotheistically oriented places
How did Isis get promoted from "respected Egyptian goddess" to "one true and living God?" (p101)
She was paired with Serapis in terms of supremacy
Why couldn't the Isis cults be considered monotheistic? (p101)
She existed among the pantheon of other Gods, which included her own offspring
Who wrote The Golden Bough? (p105)
How did Christian theologians explain the similarities between the Christ story and the tales of other gods and goddesses?
God reveals himself in ways which those who must hear him are able to comprehend
Was the size of a city a factor in how likely it would be to support a church of Isis? (p111)
Why does Stark hypothesize that cities with the cult of Isis would have Christian churches sooner than cities without them?
They are already familiar with many aspects of monotheism
Which is more common: conversion from a polytheistic religion to a monotheistic one, or vice-versa? (p115)
Polytheism to monotheism
Stark keeps using the term "Diaspora." What does "Diaspora" mean? (NOT in the book)
A large movement of people (usually forced) out of their native land
In this case Jews living outside of Israel
What is "religious capital?" (pp126-127)
Degree of mastery and of attachment to a particular religious culture
How did Paul organize his missionary trips to different cities? (pp130)
It was a large scale operation that involved meeting current Christians and using their social connections to help convert and establish bases elsewhere
Accounting for the factors of Hellenisation, ports, Disapora, what was Paul's contribution to the spread of Christianity?
Writer of much of the new testament and ORGANIZER, not creator of new congregations
Does Stark concur with the popular notion that Jews stopped converting to Christianity between 50 and 150 AD? (pp136-
What is the root of the word "Gnosticism" (p143)
Gnosis- one who knows
Was there any truth to the belief among biblical scholars that the early Christian fathers purposely misrepresented the
"Gnostic" heretics in an effort to discredit them? (pp144-145)
No. After the Gnostic texts were found many early fathers quoted the Gnostics exactly, believing they were best condemned of their own mouths.
How do Judaism, Christianity, and Islam solve the problem the existence of evil in the world? (pp145-146)
There exist lesser supernatural beings who brought evil into the world
What is Barbelo in The Secret Book According to John? (p146)
Barbelo - the First Thought, consort to god, and mother to all things supernatural
According to The Secret Book According to John, is the God of Genesis a benevolent or malevolent being? (pp147-148)
How can the attitude towards Jews and their god in many Gnostic texts be described? (pp146-147)
What does Stark consider a major factor in the failure of heretical cults such as the Marcionists and Manichaeans to prosper?
Couldn't have the sex, even if married!
Were all Gnostic and heretical Christian cults opposed to human sexuality? (pp151-152)
No, but most were
What was the name of the self-proclaimed twin brother of Jesus? (pp155-156)
Didymus Jude Thomas
Why would heretical schools be more common in large towns than small ones? (p162)
There were more people to go to the schools
What did Marcion argue had to be done in order to fully embrace Christ? (p166)
You had to expel the teachings of the Judaizers - those who warped the teachings of Jesus to fit Jewish tradition
Did Marcion make up any new scriptures, or did he just decide to disregard some already existing ones? (pp167-168)
Just disregarded what he saw as contradictions
Why would Marcionite congregations be more likely to form in cities that had large Jewish populations? (pp169-171)
Marcionism seems to be the development of an evolution of those who hated living in close proximity to Jews to use religion to degrade them
According to Edward Gibbons, how did the early Christians treat their pagan neighbors once Christianity was established as Rome's dominant religion? (pp183-184)
Did paganism die out suddenly, or did it just slowly fade away? (pp184-185)
Slowly faded away
What is a mithraeum (plural mithraea)? (p186)
A man-made cave where Mithraics went to worship...
Is it true, as has been asserted, that Mithraism was a strong competitor with Christianity for the hearts and minds of Romans?
Why are most mithraea found near the borders of the Roman Empire? (p188)
It was an army cult
Were the elite classes of Rome likely to join the cult of Mithras? (188)
If Constantine was sincere in his conversion to Christianity, why did he appoint so many pagans to positions of power and
influence in his government? (p190)
He still sought religious harmony in the empire
Why didn't Emperor Julian (the Apostate) revive the tradition of bloodily persecuting Christians? (p195)
He didn't want to create new martyrs
What was the effect of Julian the Apostate's decree that Christians could not teach the classics? (p195)
It meant that if elite parents wanted their children to be educated that they would grow up Pagan
Were Christians able to wipe out paganism in the Roman Empire in the fourth, fifth, and sixth centuries AD? (p197)
Was Edward Gibbon correct when he asserted that paganism died out during the reign of Theodosius? (p199)
Is Stark able to demonstrate a correlation between Demiurgism (Gnosticism) and paganism? (p206)
What was wrong with Arthur Schlesinger's assertion that Andrew Jackson became president because he persuaded millions of Americans who had never voted before to vote for him? (pp210-212)
He made a qualitative assumption of a massive Jacksonian victory without the qualitative evidence of having actually counted the votes
Stark is able to use numbers to confirm accepted ideas, but what does this mean when he makes unexpected discoveries?
He hopes they can be confirmed by someone else
Did Paul preach to Jews or Gentiles primarily? (p221)
Why is it important to recognize that Christianity was an oriental faith like the Cybele and Isis cults? (p221)
It appealed to the emotions, conscience, and intellect
What was arguably Justinian's most lasting achievement?
Hagia Sophia (Church of Holy Wisdom)
From which ancestor do Arabs claim descent?
Where was Muhammad born?
What event in Muhammad's life marked the beginning of Islam as an independent religious movement?
The Hijra of 622
Who was Muhammad's caliph or "successor" after his death?
Who was Anthony of Egypt?
He is considered to be the first monk
How does Islam differ from Christianity in terms of their respective relationships between sacred and secular authority?
Islam authority comes from the church. Christians do not directly govern.
How should we think of Romulus Augustus?
He was a pretty cool guy I guess... look just bullshit something and hope you get it right
Why were monasteries important institutions during the decline and fall of the Roman Empire in the west?
They provided a form of government revolving around the church.
Which of the following statements best represents Muhammad's attitude toward Christian and
They were all prophets of the lord. Just not the last prophet.
What is the best explanation for the rapid spread of Islam?
In 627 Mecca dispatched an army to evict Muhammad from Yathrib this plan backfired and Muhammad won a victory over Mecca's superior forces. As news spread of this rate of Islam converts multiplied.
Why did early Christian congregations resist the tendency that many religions have to splinter as they spread?
They adopted the Latin way of Christianity.
What was the most important long-term significance of Constantine?
He made the practice of Christianity legal and made it safe and popular to practice.
Why do Islamic states, both in their early years and today, differ from Christian states in the relationship between church and state?
In Islam the church is the state. In Christianity the church only governs the church.
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