Smoky Mountain Bible Institute
(Est. 2009) Lesson #81
Last time we ended with the martyrdom of Peter and Paul circa 68 AD. I am not sure how big a piece we can break off of the remaining 1948 years of history but let’s take a bite and see how much we can chew on in this month of elections and turkey dinners.
Let’s start with one of the single most significant events in the first century, in the fall of 70 AD. This was the point at which Rome had had enough of the zealots and their rebellion and decided to squash this irritating little region and make an example of them. The troubles started in 66 AD but by fall of 70 AD, under Tacitus, the Romans had destroyed the 500-year-old second temple. For centuries many historic things and events were actually dated based on the number of years ‘since the destruction of the temple in Jerusalem’.
Some other things going on in the world in the first and second centuries were: Rome reached its greatest geographical size under Emperor Trajan, who ruled from 98 to 116 AD; Emperor Hadrian built his wall to protect his British colonies from 122 to 127; Afghanistan is first invaded by the Huns around 200 AD; Tacitus writes his history around 117; Pope Victor the First, Bishop of Rome, is officially the 15th Pope (but it was not until near the end of his time in 199 that the Roman pontificate claimed the predominate position that it still claims today); Some of the oldest known Mayan monuments date back to around 168 AD; Ptolemy drew maps of 26 countries around 170 AD; and Rome suffered a great plague, one of the first on record from 134 to 180 AD.
We will keep it short this month and next month we will make our way up to around 300 AD. We will also discuss how what we know as the 66 books of the Bible came together in the first three centuries of Christianity. That will leave us about 1700 years to cover in 2017.
Till next month Pastor Portier