Moss begins by tracing the theme of imitating Jesus through suffering in the literature of the Jesus movement and early church and its application in martyrdom literature. She demonstrates the importance of imitating the sufferings of Christ as a practice and ethos in the Jesus movement. She then proceeds to the interpretations of the martyr's death and afterlife, arguing against the dominant theory that the martyr's death was viewed as a sacrifice, and finding that in their post-mortem existence martyrs continue to be assimilated to Christ, closely resembling the exalted Christ as intercessors, judges, enthroned monarchs and banqueters.

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