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Taken from "Tales of a Wesleyana Collector" by Frederick F. Maser
This translation from the Latin appears in The Prosecution of John Wyclyf by Joseph H. Dalmus, published by Yale University Press. 1952. Used by permission.
This letter was written by the twelve-year-old Jonathan Edwards to his sister Mary on May 10, 1716.
A Synopsis of the Imaginative Work by Comenius
From the bitter persecution of Diocletian (303–305), a heroine emerged. Agnes embodied the two ultimate devotions of Christianity: virginity and martyrdom. Since church fathers often spoke in glowing, almost worshipful, terms of both virgins and martyrs, it was natural that they would hail this young girl, martyred in about 304 A.D. The early-5th-century poet Prudentius takes up the story:
Personal reflections, in Finney's own words, about, among other things, his relationship with God, his baptism in the Holy Ghost, Heaven & Hell, perfect peace & blessedness, and his inward struggles with the death of his first wife.
An excerpt from a letter of Waldensian pastor Giovan Paschale, who was hanged in Rome in 1560.
Excerpts on man's original simplicity from St. Bernard's Sermons on the Song of Songs
Beginning as a despised, illicit religious sect, Christianity endured 300 years of hostility to emerge as the dominant force in the Roman Empire.
Christians held a theology of martyrdom that gave them courage to endure.
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February 23, 155 (traditional date): Polycarp, the bishop of Smyrna, is martyred. Reportedly a disciple of the Apostle John, at age 86 he was taken to be burned at the stake. "You try to frighten me with fire that burns for an hour and forget the fire of hell that never burns out," he said. The flames, legend says, would not touch him, and when he was run through with a sword, his blood put the fire out (see issue 27: Persecution in the Early Church).

February 23, 303: Diocletian begins ...

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