Coptic Orthodox Diocese of the Southern United States
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What is the exact definition of a Christian martyr?

  1. Should he/she be a believer or not?

  2. Should he/she die naturally or by shedding his/her blood in the name of Christ?

  3. What about if he/she was prepared by confession, communion, and good deeds or not?

  4. What about if he/she has been baptized and was present with the believers only by his body (but in his/her spirit, he/she has many bad things), but is killed due to his/her faith?

The definition of a Christian martyr is one who dies for the sake of his/her faith that Christ Jesus is indeed God Incarnate and One in the Holy Trinity with the Father and the Holy Spirit.

1) To be considered a Christian martyr, one would have to be a believer (Matthew 5:11,12).

2) If a Christian dies naturally, he/she would not be considered a martyr, but perhaps may be considered a confessor or a righteous person, depending upon the circumstances.

3) Every person should be prepared by living a life of repentance through the Holy Sacraments, in addition to expressing brotherly love and charity towards others. If one chooses to not live his/her life in this manner, then, in essence, one is choosing his/her destiny.

4) Only God knows the depth of one's heart and will judge each person according to His mercy and His justice.

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