Mark had heard stories about the persecutions of the past. But all he had ever known was peace, and in his youthful innocence, he didn’t realize how quickly this could change.
In AD 284, Diocletian was crowned emperor of Rome. Almost two decades later, just as Mark was starting up his own home, Diocletian set loose the demons of hell on the Church. The persecution lasted less than a decade, but it was the worst that Christians had ever experienced. And Mark and his wife Lydia were caught right in the middle.
They had a choice. They could give up their faith and live. Maybe even prosper.
Or they could stand firm. And die…
The Century of Crisis:How did the Christian church go from being a persecuted church to being a persecuting church within a century? This is the first of four books in this series, and tells the story of Christians living under the rule of Diocletian. The second book tells the story of Christians under the rule of Constantine. The third book takes a look at Christians under Julian (the apostate), and the fourth book will look at them becoming the state church under Theodosius.
Understanding God when He doesn’t seem to understand you
God, I have so many questions. So many things I don’t understand.
God, you promised me a Christian husband and family, but I’m getting too old.
God, you gave me the desire to be an engineer but haven’t given me the money I need to go to university.
God, why did you let my mother die after I claimed your power to heal her?
God, I’ve prayed and prayed but you still haven’t given me the money I need to pay my gambling debts.
God, I prayed but you didn’t answer. In fact, I’ve prayed for years, but you just ignore me.
God, why did my innocent little girl have to die? Why did you allow someone to kidnap her and rape her?
God, my baby is sick and needs an operation. Are you punishing him because of my sins?
The seed for this book came from questions like this written by people like you. I have struggled along with many of you, trying to answer that question: “Why Lord?” Understanding God’s answers, or lack of answers, can be hard.
In this book, I’ve tried to cast some light on this. It’s just a little bit of light because in many ways God is beyond my understanding. Yet God doesn’t want you to wallow in a slough of despair. If you are drowning in the mud of doubt and misery, I hope this book will give you a glimpse of something better. And help you to understand God better.
The twenty-eight chapters in this book each include a chapter from the Gospel of Matthew in the World English Bible. The commentary and questions guide the reader to understand who Jesus really is. An excellent ministry resource for mass distribution or to give to your neighbors.
Life isn’t meant to be hopeless or meaningless. God has answers. Solomon had every material thing he could wish for, yet he lacked one thing: meaning in life. To find it, he went on a quest. This book is a study of Ecclesiastes and was previously published under the title Where Is God When Life Doesn’t Make Sense?