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Throughout history religion has played a major role in the development of civilizations Religions such as Christianity Islam and Buddhism have spread to other kingdoms throughout the world by use of missionaries These missionaries would begin with the upper class of a society until their message penetrated throughout the whole area In most cases it was at a time when an area was crumbling as far as politics and economics Early religions were used as a source of power and economical growth After Marcus Aurelius reign Romes power and purpose began to decline Several of the outer provinces were invaded by the mid 200s and at the beginning of the 4th century efforts of renewal and realignment came about based in part on Christianity and absolute monarchy The German invasions of the 3rd and 4th century found a Roman society that was already weakened by the burden of heavy taxes decline in productivity and instability at the top Demoralization was slowed but could not be stopped by the efforts of Diocletian and Constantine It was during this time that the new religion of Christianity gathered strength in the Roman realm Christianity was based on the teachings of Jesus of Nazareth who was born during the reign of Augustus Ceaser Approximately one-third of the worlds population at that time had asserted Jesus to be the Son of God and Redeemer of Mankind The appeal of this new Christian religion was its universality and its message of hope and optimism at a time when ordinary people were struggling and pessimistic For a couple of decades Christianity was spread only through Judea until the first educated Jew Saul of Tarsus was converted and became the apostle Paul Paul was able to spread the Christian doctrine among both ex-Jews and Gentiles After winning the effects of Constantine Christianity became the official state religion in 350 AD Centuries later the two cultures- Roman and Germanic- would
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