St. James’ Sunday Study Group Lectures
December 22 @ 11:45 am - 1:00 pm
Constantine and the Established Church
Lecture # 14
Dec. 22, 2019 11:45 am. To 1:00 pm.
In the previous lecture, we traced the steps by which the Roman Empire turned from a persecutor of the Christian religion to its protector and patron. The personal religious convictions of the
imperial patron, Constantine, were never entirely clear, yet he seemed genuinely devoted to the cause of Christianity. As head of state, he showed significant patronage to the Christian religion and referred to himself as the “servant of God,” but he never exercised the same direct control of Christianity that the Roman emperors had over worship in the empire. As we will see in this lecture, the efforts of Constantine’s successors to impose Christianity on the populace further indicate that the transition was neither natural nor easy.