How Did Constantine's Conversion To Christianity?

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Constantine’s embrace of Christianity early in the fourth century marked a new age for believers. Until this time Christians had been persecuted, and, due to the Christians’ refusal to worship the Emperor, were seen as enemies of the state. Circumstances changed dramatically, however, during Constantine’s reign. H. A. Drake (2012) comments on the transformation that occurred within Christianity, “During the thirty years of [Constantine’s] reign, more change took place in the status, structure, and beliefs of the Christian Church than during any other period of its history” (p. 111). Constantine’s influence on the Church was enormous and the consequences, both positive and negative, and would have far reaching implications not only during his time, but also for much of the life of the church. Historians debate whether Constantine’s conversion to Christianity was sincere or merely politically expedient (Drake, 2011, p. 195). The Roman Empire had been built on paganism, the Empire’s official religion. Constantine did not want to alienate those who followed the ancient religions, especially those in the Senate. Additionally, he remained a High Priest of paganism, as was customary for Roman Emperors, performing the functions relating to that position. However, Christianity could not offer him…show more content…
At the time, many believed that Constantine was chosen by God to bring the Church and the Empire together so that Christianity would be established on earth. Others were not so convinced. Seeing the corruption and pagan influence in the church, many withdrew to the desert beginning the monastic movement. Some declared the Church apostate and separated from Church at large. Many remained within the Church, neither completely accepting all the changes nor totally rejecting the Church all together. Constantine’s influence on the Church would be felt not only during his lifetime, but for generations to
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