#1 - The Persecution of Dioclesian
History of the Church of Christ: Century IV
It is certain, that from our Saviour's time to the present, there have ever been persons whose dispositions and lives have been formed by the rules of the New Testament; men who have been real, not merely nominal Christians, who believed the doctrines of the gospel, loved them because of their divine excellency, and suffered gladly the loss of all things, that they might win Christ, and be found in him. It is the history of these men which I propose to write. It is of no consequence with respect to my plan, nor of much importance I believe in its own nature, to what external church they belonged. I intend not to enter with any nicety into an account of their rites and ceremonies, or forms of church government, much less into their secular history. Even religious controversies shall be omitted, except those which seem to bear a relation to the essence of Christ's religion, and of which the history of his real church seems to require some account. Let not the reader expect, that the actions of great men (great in a secular view I mean) will be exhibited to his notice. Nothing but what belongs to Christ's kingdom shall be admitted, and genuine piety is that alone which I intend to celebrate. - Summary by Introduction
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