Martyrs of the Coliseum – The Inside Scoop

By Jessica Brock, Talon Staff writer

Romans + entertainment = bloodshed

This equation is common among many people. But what about the people whom the Romans “played with?” What is their story?

Gladiators, slaves and Christians, were common entertainment for the Romans. It is hard to believe people found interest in killing Christians.

Pope Saint Fabian- sent bishops to Rome to preach the Gospel. He worked in the catacombs, or burial places for honoured Christians. The Roman Emperor Decius asked all the Christians to show loyalty to Rome by burning incense to the cult images. He, along with many other Christians, refused, on account that the Old Testament stated that that act would be considered idolatry. He is now considered a martyr by many people.

St. Joan of Arc- was said to have had a vision from the angel Michael, to go and “recover France from English domination. (Wikipedia) She was captured, and sold, then finally burned at the stake when she was only nineteen years old. She is now considered a martyr and saint by many people.

Francis Taylor- was incarcerated because of his faith. He was imprisoned because of his faith, and died in prison, rather than accepting his freedom, and giving up his faith. He was Catholic, but he still shows great faith, even to the death.

I believe I should save the best for last: Christ Jesus. Jesus, born of a virgin and carpenter, was humbly sent down to Earth by His Father, to redeem His people. But His people didn’t believe that He was the Son of God. Why? Because they had seen Him grow up, “in the neighborhood,” and now He saying that He’s God? The people were afraid, scared, and didn’t know what to think. The sneaky Pharisees snatched up this opportunity, to sway the people. They made it seem like they truly believed, but after awhile they began to plot His death. He was physically and mentally abused by the Romans, which makes me angry. Couldn’t they see that they were hurting the King of Glory, Christ himself?

Christ died on a cross, pinned between Heaven and Earth. Thunder clapped its hands, things shook, and “the curtain of the temple was torn in two, from top to bottom and when the centurion, who stood facing him, saw that in this way he breathed his last, he said, “Truly this man was the Son of God!” (Mark 15:38-39) But the important thing is, we know why He died. He died to fulfill the prophecies of the Old Testament. He also died to give His chosen eternal life with Him in Heaven. And that makes Him, the greatest martyr of all.