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There’s a book coming out next March called The Myth of Persecution: How Early Christians Invented a Story of Martyrdom. The back cover of the advance reading copy says that “the ‘Age of the Martyrs’ is a fiction” and that “these stories were exaggerated, invented, and forged, often centuries later, in order to fight heresy, inspire the faithful, and fund churches.”

The book’s author is a professor of New Testament and early Christianity at the University of Notre Dame.



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