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There are two sides to this argument. I think that most people think that it was harder to be a disciple then because more brutal things were done to people in those days. There was a greater chance of laying down their lives for their faith than today. eg.crucifixion was a common way to put people to death in those days. Today people don’t really follow their own beliefs, they just believe what everybody else does. This has led to a massive number of people who claim to have faith but don’t practise it. Many people say that they are Catholic or Church of England when really they are more like pagans. Most people don’t go to church nowadays because church is seen as a place of boredom. This means that the number of people who actually go to church has decreased dramatically over the past 1000 years and as people are being born they see that most people don’t go to Mass so they don’t either.
This makes it harder to be a follower today, as going against the crowd is very dfficult to many people whereas 2000 years ago there were many devout Christians who tried their best to follow Jesus’ example which makes it easier to follow him as you aren’t different to everybody else. Christians lives 2000 years ago were much simpler. Most of them had a routine lifestyle and did the same thing everyday. This meant that they knew what would happen tomorrow and because of this there was no stress in their jobs. There were no deadlines or million pound deals anywhere because they weren’t in direct contact with the whole world. They lived in a close communities and they knew most of the people they dealt with in business. People had more time not working and could focus on their beliefs. This made them more devout Christians as they spent the extra time practising their faith. Nowadays, however people are always running around and trying desperately to earn money.
We do this because we want as many material things as possible. We live a materialistic lifestyle. Christian values differ from the values of the modern day world because Christians have a code of conduct to follow whereas modern day people do as they please. People are selfish and put themselves first instead of serving others. One can live out there vocation to be a disciple by doing normal things like being a good father, mother, daughter etc. The phrase, “To take up your cross,” is probably more true then than now because in those days people who followed Jesus stood a much greater chance of being killed by crucifixion or any other way than now.
We are in a part of the world where opposition to Christianity is less. These days you have a very different persecution. Now people think that your’e a strange person and make fun of you if you speak out whereas in those days they’d persecute you with physical pain rather than emotional. The saying “To take up your cross,” isn’t actually meant litterally, it just means follow me and take whatever comes to you. Most people think that it’s easier to be a Christian today because a person isn’t killed but what affects people more because it stays there forever, is emotional pain. There is more of that now if you differ in the beliefs of the people around you. Also people today are much better educated and they want scientific proof and they can form an opinion themselves.