Chapter

The Significance of Proselytizing

GOODMAN MARTIN

in Mission and Conversion

Published in print December 1995 | ISBN: 9780198263876
Published online October 2011 | e-ISBN: 9780191682674 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198263876.003.0001

Series: Clarendon Paperbacks

The Significance of Proselytizing

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Two metaphors predominate in scholarly analyses of the religious history of late antiquity. One is the race to win souls in the first three centuries of the Christian era. The other image is that of the market place. The book aims to examine and challenge such assumptions that all or most religions in the Roman empire were, in this sense, missionary. The study is confined to the relatively small area of the Mediterranean world and the Near East, and to the 800 years or so between the conquests of Alexander the Great of Macedon and the establishment of Christianity as the predominant religion of the Roman empire. In trying to establish a history of religious concepts, it attempts to trace in the sources the fundamental notion of a mission to convert others.

Keywords: Roman empire; mission; Christianity; missionaries; religion

Chapter.  7044 words. 

Subjects: History of Religion

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