The Martyrdom of the Ten Thousand, by Dürer.
Their executions were varied and heinous, including
being thrown from heights.
Throughout the history of Christianity there have been periods of mass martyrdom.
We are obviously suffering through such an era once again today... perhaps even 'state sponsored' - much as it was in the earliest times. Which is why I posted the image of The Martyrdom of the Ten Thousand, by Dürer.
The altarpiece depicts the legend of the ten thousand Christians who were martyred on Mount Ararat, in a massacre perpetrated by the Persian King Saporat on the command of the Roman Emperors Hadrian and Antonius.
Dürer’s gruesome scene depicts scores of Christians meeting a violent death in a rocky landscape, providing a veritable compendium of tortures and killings. The oriental potentate in the blue cloak and turban who is directing the action in the lower right corner of the picture, would in Dürer’s time have been perceived as a reference to the threat of Turkish invasion, because of the seizure of Constantinople in 1453. - SourcePersia - on the command of Rome - executed the thousands. The artist depicts the Persians as the Turkish Caliphate - which threatened Western Christendom after the fall of Constantinople. (Don't depend on me for specific dates - I'm simply drawing a parallel.)
The image is provocative - at least for me. Lately I wonder, why the United States refuses to admit that ISIS is Islamic and poses a threat? Why is the administration reluctant to come to the aid of Christians? What is with Obama - even Clinton - with her private emails - especially with the scandal of the Benghazi attack shadowing her? Why is she even considered as presidential material after such a blunder? Is the United States somehow complicit in at least allowing ISIS to destabilize the Middle East and leaving behind Christians as simply collateral damage?
Sounds crazy? I suppose it does - but what is going on? I don't understand the denial, the indifference.
They "came with war, knives, pillaging, forced enslavement, murders, and acts that are not from the good God, but instigated by the chief manslayer, the devil."
That said, Christian bloggers and websites should not satirize ISIS persecution - be it making fun of these devils throwing homosexuals from tall buildings, beheading those they wish to exterminate, or threatening the Holy Father. All of that is inappropriate. The terror of Islam is real, their manner of killing barbarous, macabre, and gruesomely inventive. They behead, they maim and dismember. They throw from cliffs and towers and stone their victims, and they burn them alive. In times past, they flayed their victims.
On the other hand, a friend sent me this from St. Gregory Palamas:
St. Gregory Palamas (ca. 1296-1359) on Islam: It is true that Mohammed started from the east and came to the west, as the sun travels from the east unto the west. Nevertheless, he came with war, knives, pillaging, forced enslavement, murders, and acts that are not from the good God, but instigated by the chief manslayer, the devil. Consider now, in times past, did not Alexander (the Great) prove victorious from the east to the west? There have also been many others, in many other times, who set out on military campaigns and dominated the world. Yet none of the peoples believed in their leaders as you revere Mohammed. Though Mohammed may employ violence and offer pleasures, he cannot secure the approval of the world.
Albeit, the teaching of Christ, though it turns away from (worldly) pleasures, it has taken hold to the ends of the world, without violence, since it is opposed to it. This phenomenon is the victory that overcomes the world (1 Jn. 5:4). - Source
Man in center is the convert-martyr from Chad.
“their God is my God“
And stop making distinctions, when it comes to Christian baptism there is one baptism. I may be wrong but it seems to me that when it comes to baptism by blood, there is only one martyrdom as well. The Coptic martyrs belong to all of us who profess Christ. Perhaps this story, so evocative of the first martyrs and subsequent group martyrdom throughout history, can convince us of that:
ISIS announced the execution of 21 Copts but only 20 names were confirmed, most of them were from the province of Minya(Upper Egypt). There was an inaccuracy in the number of Egyptian Hostages; there were only 20 Egyptians(Copts). Then who was this remaining one non-Coptic victim?
Ahram-Canadian News was able to gather information about this man. He was a Chadian Citizen (Darker skin shown in picture) who accepted Christianity after seeing the immense faith of his fellow Coptic Christians to die for Christ. When Terrorist forced him to reject Jesus Christ as God, looking at his Christian friends he replied, “their God is my God“ so the terrorist beheaded him also. - Source
"Russia will spread her errors throughout the world,
causing wars, persecutions of the Church.
The good will be martyred..." - OL Fatima
Prayer to OL of Ransom
O God, Who by means of the most glorious
Mother of Thy Son
was pleased to give new children to Thy Church
for the deliverance of Christ's faithful
from the power of the heathen;
grant, we beseech Thee,
that we who love and honor her as the foundress
of so great a work
may, by her merits and intercession,
be ourselves delivered from all sin
and from the bondage of the evil one.
Through the same Christ, our Lord.
H/T Yaya for the story of the martyr from Chad.
H/T Nan for the St. Gregory quote.