============================== >>>For I determined not to know any thing among you, save Jesus Christ, and him crucified.. I Corinthians 2: 2<<<=============================
Published On: Tue, Dec 3rd, 2013

Martyrs – Ignatius

St. Ignatius

[su_heading style=”1″][su_button link=”#” color=”#008000″ size=”5″ style=”5″ dark=”0″ radius=”10″ icon=” target=”blank”] Martyrs – Ignatius [/su_button][/su_heading]

Ignatius of Antioch was among the Apostolic Fathers, was the third Bishop of Antioch, and was a student of John the Apostle. Ignatius converted to Christianity at a young age. Later in his life he was chosen to serve as the Bishop of Antioch, succeeding Saint Peter and St. Evodius (who died around AD 67). The 4th-century Church historian Eusebius records that Ignatius succeeded Evodius. Making his apostolic succession even more immediate, Theodoret of Cyrrhus reported that St. Peter himself appointed Ignatius to the episcopal see of Antioch. Ignatius called himself Theophorus (God Bearer).

[su_pullquote align=”left”] I am God’s wheat, and I am to be ground by the teeth of wild beasts, so that I may become Christ’s pure bread.[/su_pullquote]

Ignatius is one of the five Apostolic Fathers (the earliest authoritative group of the Church Fathers). He based his authority on being a bishop of the Church, living his life in the imitation of Christ. It was his refusal to denounce Christianity that led to him being arrested and forced to travel to Rome for execution by brutal Roman Emperor Trajan.

Along the route he wrote six letters to the churches in the region and one to a fellow bishop.

  • The Letter to the Ephesians,
  • The Letter to the Magnesians,
  • The Letter to the Trallians,
  • The Letter to the Romans,
  • The Letter to the Philadelphians,
  • The Letter to the Smyrnaeans,
  • The Letter to Polycarp, Bishop of Smyrna.

Unafraid of death, St. Ignatius was condemned to an execution that expounded the worst excesses of Roman culture: he was thrown into the Colosseum and mauled and eaten by lions. Aware of his fate, Ignatius bravely wrote, I am God’s wheat, and I am to be ground by the teeth of wild beasts, so that I may become Christ’s pure bread.

Martyrdom is not just a calling to stay faithful to Ignatius’ identity of Christian-even more deeply; he sees that his discipleship is made true through the grinding of his body (the wheat) into death, which produces the spiritual bread. His calling as a martyr beautifully underscores the connection between Christ’s suffering for mankind, and that which is offered in his own life. Growth as a Christian is sacramental, hierarchical and mystical through the life of the Church. But to Ignatius, salvation in Christ is also mystical in his martyrdom, which mystically reflects Christ’s life and death in his own life and death.

Abad of Jesus Christ,

  Stulo Robinson.S.

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====================================>>>Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and thou shalt be saved, and thy house. Acts 16:31 <<<====================================