Two Key Men 2 of 2 Charlemagne As I mentioned in the previous post, the Middle Ages gave us some key figures in the History of Christianity. We may disagree with them on some levels, but we are indebted to their furtherance of Christianity. While we may not like to think about the direct link we possess to them, they do serve as the ancestors that we look back upon. I mentioned in the last post about Gregory “The Great.” He was elected Bishop of Rome in 590 and had significant contributions. Many of them weren’t ecclesiastical, but political. Under the direction of the ordaining work of … [Read more...] about Charlemagne
Two Key Men
1 of 2 Gregory "The Great" The Middle Ages, or Medieval Christianity, gave rise to some significant men. A reader of Church History might find any number of individuals that suit their fancy. I have chosen to give two names that contributed to the rise of Christianity in unique ways. As I previously mentioned, the early Middle Ages saw the fall of the Roman Empire in 476, and the rise of the Bishop of Rome to a prominent position. Some of the earliest Bishops of Rome captured various positions of authority. Some helped slow the barbarian invasions through political tactics, others used their … [Read more...] about Two Key Men
Early Medieval Christianity
We have so much to learn! Once the Post-Nicene Church Father era ends with Augustine, we see an emergence of authority take place. What happened leading up to this point? Five Ecumenical councils took place, a claim to succession from Peter began , Christianity moved beyond the borders of the Empire, and in 476 the last Emperor is deposed. I consider the broader Medieval Christian period to last from 451-1516 AD. I know there are ways to subdivide this time, and I will mention some throughout the next few articles, but as a whole, this entire time period is marked with difficulty and … [Read more...] about Early Medieval Christianity
Do you know these men??
Nicene and Post-Nicene Fathers As we recently viewed the first five ecumenical councils from a distance, I want to take a closer look at some influential men from that time. The men that lived during the time of the Council of Nicaea through the late 400’s are referred to as the Nicene and Post-Nicene Church Fathers. These men maintained the consistency of doctrine that was set in place at the council in 325. As I have discussed before, we ought to view them through the lens of God’s sovereignty. Each one contributed to the church a thought or work that added mightily. This list will not be … [Read more...] about Do you know these men??
Five Councils that Shaped our Doctrine
The Five Influential Councils Say what you want about Constantine and the conversion of the Roman Empire to a form of Christianity, but one thing we should be grateful for is the May 20, 325 Council of Nicaea. This was the first of five Ecumenical councils that involved bishops from all over the Roman Empire. Each council was assembled to help provide greater clarity on the biblical approach to the person and nature of Christ. Now that was not the only reason each council met, but it was a significant one. As decades went by following a council’s decision, new and heretical views … [Read more...] about Five Councils that Shaped our Doctrine
What was it like back in the day?
Old School The modern Christian movement has enveloped itself in a battle over worship. Unfortunately, the primary issue is style, proving today’s impression of worship; starts and ends with “singing.” However, singing is not the end all of worship, but a single component. Our worship today often resembles a cultural shift based upon our demographic or target group, and I do not think it is safe. The second-generation disciples painted a picture of worship that I think can help us. They lived shortly after the original NT organization. After all, the New Testament church was a … [Read more...] about What was it like back in the day?
The Early Apologists
Taitian, Irenaeus, Origen, and Tertullian As I mentioned in my previous post, early pagan philosophical critics sought to discredit and destroy the “new” Christian religion. However, their ill-fated attempts did not stand a chance against the providential hand of God. In His ordained plan, He placed certain men to write apologetic works refuting those pagan philosophical critics. I mentioned Justin Martyr as the “main” or Father of the Apologists, but I want to give acknowledgment to others. Defending the faith was not a task for one person. God’s plans have rarely been reserved for one … [Read more...] about The Early Apologists
God’s Hand in the Rise of Early Critics and Apologists
In the 1st century the newness of the Christian faith led to various attacks. Pagans, Jews, and the Romans all sought to destroy the “new” religion. They didn’t realize the faith was not new, just rounding in form. (The Christians saw their heritage lifted out of the OT Judaism in the person of Jesus Christ.) They also did not realize that persecution and attacks were nothing new to Christians. However, with the turn of the century, new attacks came from intellectual philosophers. In the 2nd and 3rd centuries men like Celsus and Porphyro sought to demean and squelch the new Christian faith. … [Read more...] about God’s Hand in the Rise of Early Critics and Apologists
God’s Providence and Influence on the Rise of Christianity
The providence of God gets lost in the singular discussion regarding salvation. When we talk about this topic this is the main idea. However, as I continue to look through a historical lens I see more than that. Maybe we do not think beyond salvific things in reference to God’s providence and allow ourselves to see His hand moving throughout history. It might be that we accept God’s providential work through the Scriptures, but somehow, someway, we lose sight of that same work after revelation stops. Have you ever thought about how God raised and crushed empires before the time of Christ, … [Read more...] about God’s Providence and Influence on the Rise of Christianity
The Significance of Church History
Church History is a common course in almost every undergraduate and graduate level degree in Theology, Bible, ministry, etc. However, I have begun to think we have lost the purpose or thrust behind the need for studying the historical roots of the church. In a day when the newest, latest, and most innovative ideas take center stage, it may be that we need to take a step back and look into the past. So why study the history of the church? I wish I could take all the credit for these ideas, but I can’t. This is the culmination of many individuals before me, some of which taught me. 1. … [Read more...] about The Significance of Church History