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Ignatius of Antioch – The Man Who Faced Lions
Heroes of the Faith series
by Sinclair B Ferguson illustrated by Alison Brown
Publisher:Banner of Truth Trust
This is the first book of the series and starts with a brief overview of Jesus’ life and teaching, introduces the reader to his disciples and particularly to John, who as an old man came to know and befriend both Ignatius and Polycarp, young men at the time. This book tells the story of Ignatius, who had become ‘Bishop’ or ‘Elder’ of the Christians in Antioch. When the new Roman Emperor, Trajan, decreed that all those found to be Christian should be punished, the Christians of Antioch feared for their lives. When the opportunity came for Ignatius to stand up to the visiting Emperor, Trajan was furious and shouted that he must be taken to Rome to be thrown to the lions for the entertainment of the people there.
Ignatius was pleased to die for his Lord and God, but the journey to Rome was long and arduous and amazingly he was able to meet with his friend Polycarp at Smyrna and other Christians too, and on his journey he wrote letters that Polycarp collected after his death, and their contents have been preserved to this day.
There is a timeline at the back of each book that helps to set the scene, for the men portrayed in this series are true Heroes of the Faith whom Christians of all ages should know about and they should honour their memory. These excellent books will help young people, to do just that.
Others in the series are Polycarp of Smyrna – The Man Whose Faith Lasted and his pupil Irenaeus of Lyons: The Man Who Wrote Books
Reviewer: Mary Bartholomew (30/07/11)