Did early Christians forcefully convert Jews and Gentiles to Christianity?

I read on wikipedia that when Roman Empire embraced Christianity they were forcing people to become Christians. During the Saxons war people were forcefully Roman Catholicized by the Franks.

Copyed from wikipedia:
Lithuania was not the first country that fell victim to a campaign of lethal military force, for the purpose of forced conversion to Christianity. Three entire European nationalities became victims of genocide because they refused to become Christians:“…the Vandals, Ostogoths, and Heruli. The last three were destroyed by the Pope of Rome because they refused to become Christian. The armies of Emperor Justinian, in cooperation with the Pope, thrust the Ostrogoths out of the city of Rome. They have become extinct

I mean i just to thought people converted to Christianity because they kinda knew that it is the right religion, i believe God told them somehow. That Europe willingly converted to Christianity but know i see that Romans didn’t truly embrace Christiaity, neither did Lithuanians or Saxons or many others, many were forced to embrace it.

Also some extra question if anyone knows, how many Jews did convert to Christianity after Jesus’s death? Were the new converts mostly Gentiles? If so, why? I also hear Jews were forced to become Christians. Is it true?

Emperor Justinian was emperor of the eastern empire in the mid 500s. I don’t see that as “early Christianity”. It seems you’ve taken a few examples of Christianity being spread by the sword and concluded that it was only spread by the sword. The problem with this was that, up until Constantine in the mid 300s, the opposite was true. It was at times tolerated, and at other times suppressed by the sword, most especially under Diocletian in the early 300s. Yet it spread like wildfire.

If they haven’t listed any sources for this, then I’d take it with a grain of salt.

I’m not saying it’s not possible, but I certainly wouldn’t take someone at their word about it, and certainly not from a site like wikipedia.

Um, your first problem is that you view wikipedia as a good source. The Ostrogoths were Christian, a heretical version (Arianism), but Christian none the less. I’m pretty sure the Vandals were as well.

Im not arguing against Christianity, i am a Christian myself, i just want to know the truth.

I can’t tell which Wiki page you are looking at, but that chunk you copied and pasted seems to come directly from a book called “The Crusades” by Bernard Hamilton, published in 1998.

Forced conversion of the Jews began as early as that, yes.
Saint Serverus, a Bishop from Naples, for example, wrote the “Epistula Severi”–an account of the burning of temples and the forced conversion of Jews to Christianity on the island of Minorca in 418.

Here’s some info on that:

muse.jhu.edu/login?auth=0&type=summary&url=/journals/journal_of_early_christian_studies/v005/5.4br_severo.html

On the part about the Vandals, they had invaded Africa during the time of the western emperor Valentinian III (If I remember right a roman general in the province invited them over from Spain to assist him in a civil war) and were established in North Africa by the time of Justinian. They themselves persecuted Christians that believed in the Trinity (they were Arians) and after they were conquered by Justinian’s general Belisaurius, they were assimilated into the empire. So really, I am not sure why they said that.

If you really want to learn history, I suggest you get a copy of Dr. Warren Carroll’s History of Christendom. It is a multi-volume history. The time period you are interested in would be Volumes 1 and 2.

We also need to take into account the culture of the times. The other thing is that we have a 2000 year history. We are going to find some nasty things hidden under stones. People do bad things. Other people do good things. We need to look at things in balance.

DISCLAIMER: The views and opinions expressed in these forums do not necessarily reflect those of Catholic Answers. For official apologetics resources please visit www.catholic.com.