Foxe’s Book of Martyrs: Peter, Paul and John

I have been writing notes and excepts from the book, and this time I will write about the apostle Peter, Paul and John. Beginning with Peter, as he was waiting to be crucified, some were telling him to run out of the city (Rome). And as he was trying to avoid what they were saying, yet running, it was reported that he saw the Lord Christ coming to meet him. I will quote exactly what was written:

Coming to the gate, he saw the Lord Christ come to meet him, to Whom he, worshipping, said, ‘Lord, whither dost Thou go?’ To whom He answered and said, ‘I am come to be crucified.’ By this, Peter, perceiving his suffering to be understood, returned back into the city. Jerome saith that he was crucified, his head being down and his feet upward, himself so requiring, because he was (he said) unworthy to be crucified after the same form and manner as the Lord was.

As for Paul, there is not much written about him, except that before he was beheaded, it was written that he suffered some under Nero. Then the two men, Ferega and Parthemius, who came to execute him, first desired him to pray for them that they might believe. He did pray for them, and after he prayed, the executioners gave his neck to the sword. So, he died in the same way John the Baptist died. And Paul also died much like Jesus in that he was praying for others right up until his death.

John the apostle was exiled into Patmos. Then, after the death of Domitian Nero, John was released and came to Ephesus and there governed the churches of Asia and also where he wrote his gospel. He lived there until he dies at the age of about one hundred. (So, it appears that he weas the only apostle who weas not martyred, except for being sent to Patmos.)

The persecutions continued according to “whatsoever the cruelness of man’s invention could devise…”  But in spite of it, “the church daily increased, deeply rooted in the doctrine of the apostles…”

Taken from pages 12-18 of the book.

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