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Peace in Their Time

Evidence of peace and co-operation in the numerous religious communities of Caesarea Maritima

Jews, Christians and Romans in the ancient Roman city of Caesarea Maritima – located between the modern-day cities of Tel Aviv and Haifa – lived together with a surprising measure of peace and co-operation, says Terence Donaldson, professor of New Testament studies at Wycliffe College. Editor of the soon-to-be-published Religious Rivalries and the Struggle for Success in Caesarea Maritima (Wilfrid Laurier University Press), Donaldson and his colleagues studied Christian and Jewish writings about Caesarea and archeological samples from temples, churches and synagogues. “It’s the religious conflicts that get recorded throughout the ages,” he says, “but during the first two or three centuries AD there is strong evidence of real co-operation in Caesarea Maritima among the numerous religious communities who were living cheek-to-cheek on a daily basis.”

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