Evidence of stone tool making in the pre-historic eastern Mediterranean stretch’s back to 130 thousand years B.C.E. The first signs of cultivation of grain began in the fertile crescent 10 or 12 thousand years ago. People gathered into communities, empires grew and waned. The guiding principles remained pretty much the same. Might was right, if I subjugate or kill you, it means my Gods are better than yours. I decide what is right and wrong and no karmic imbalance happens. If I win, you deserve what you get. Armies of killers roamed all places. Kingdoms were on the tip of a sword innocents were fodder for warlords and nothing more.
The magnificant coliseum in Rome, built by with war booty from a Roman slap-down of the Jews and a destruction of their Jerusalem Temple, the daily murder of tens of thousands of innocents in middle and south America sacrificed by the Mayans, or the blood-soaked mortar of Chinas great wall, are testimony to humanities endless endless capacity for cruelty in service to greatness. Mention could be made of such tragedies as Stalin’s 20 + million dead, or Hitler’s murder of 6 million plus during WWII, but the count is endless and spans the entire history of mankind.
Jesus was crucified a couple of millennia ago. He was a Jew who wandered the middle east pushing a message of peace and love that was so threatening he was tortured to death by the Roman occupiers (at the shrill behest of the local clergy) of Jerusalem. Jesus threatened the status and position of the local Jewish religious leaders of Jerusalem who lived in affluent repose, and were not about to let a wandering vagrant threaten their jobs with his growing popularity
This man, who preached love and tolerance, emerged from an era that respected power and violence above all. He spoke of spiritual values rather than subjugation of others. To this day we struggle with these conflicting drives. Nonetheless the societies that follow his teachings have become more successful than any other groups No doubt that that Christians can and have failed these values, but in balance, we have brought abundance and at least sporadic civility to many. Today evil that is growing in the middle east will not stop its holy war until it finds victory over cultures that offend Muslim sensitivities.