Western Christian Culture
Western culture is a byproduct of the Christian faith and Christendom. Originally the Christian faith was built on the presupposition that Jesus is both Creator and Lord of the universe. He was considered the sovereign Lord of the universe and his law superseded any laws that man made. He was considered the King of kings and the Lord of lords. As our Creator he had the authority to establish the laws by which we were accountable to live under.
Early tyrants realized the immediate threat that Christianity posed for their rule. If Jesus was the ultimate Lord of the universe, then they were under his jurisdiction. They were not the ultimate authority when it came to their rule. In fact, they were to be held accountable for how they ruled under God since He allowed them to rule under His ultimate will as described within the Bible.
The early church encountered persecution by Caesar because of the question of ultimate sovereignty. The Caesars allowed religious freedom to occur in the Roman Empire as long the citizens would acknowledge Caesar as the ultimate ruling authority. To show their loyalty to the empire Caesar would require them to burn incense in worship of him as his ultimate authority. Christians refused to acknowledge Caesar as the ultimate authority. They confessed Jesus as the ultimate ruling authority in the created order - not Caesar.
The Caesars recognized the direct threat this religion posed to their tyrannical rule. They could not allow such a religion to exist in their empire since it would eventually undermine their total rule over the people. Therefore they sought to destroy it. But despite their attempts to stamp out Christianity, the faith continued to grow and ultimately survived the life of the Roman Empire. It eventually replaced the Roman Empire with the values that came from the Bible. As the nations of the former Roman Empire became Christian the faith transformed their cultures into what is know today as Christian or Western Civilization. Andrew Sandlin describes this history in the following video clips found below.