Christianity is extremely spread out all over the creation. It is said to have begun with the child of God, with whom believers all over the world accept as the savior. They have faith in his second coming to judge the living and the departed. During this day of judgement, if anyone hasn’t lived agreeing to the will of god, they will be sentenced to burn in the everlasting fire of hell. Those who live their lives exemplary and in accordance to the lessons of God the son, they will go to paradise then live there for infinity singing praise to the mighty God. They are certain that God created the universe and all that is in it. He breathed life into a dark and hollow world. They trust that every social being is made in the image plus likeness of God. They are assured of things that they hope for and have a strong faith in things to come. They are monotheistic and trust that there is only one God and it is he who brought the universe into being.
Christians trust that God made human beings cutting-edge his own image, when sin became too much in the world, he gave his only son to come down and die for their sins. Their belief revolves around the biography of Jesus Christ. They believe that Jesus will come again, in the subsequent coming to take them to heaven where they’ll spend eternity singing praises to their God. This religion is based on what god has done in the past. Christianity has evolved, also has different denominations which include catholic, protestant and orthodoxy, all of which believe in Christianity but follow different doctrines. The most renowned holidays in Christianity include Christmas which marks the birth of Jesus Christ. Christians celebrate this day as they pray that Christ be reborn in their hearts again. The one who redeems them has come back to wipe their sins. Easter holiday marks the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ. Good Friday marks the day that Jesus had the last supper with his followers while anticipating betrayal from Judas Iscariot. For the duration of the last supper, they shared bread which signified his body. He urged the devotees to always remember him while they eat it. He gave them wine and they all drunk from one cup. It signified his blood that will be shed for the pardon of sin. He asked them to always remember him as they drink from the cup. The last supper is celebrated to this day among the Christian community. Jesus suffered under Pontius Pilate, was crucified with two thieves, died and was buried in a tomb. According to his followers, he rose on the third day. They report an encounter with an angel who asked them to stop looking for the living among the dead. This day is celebrated on a Monday to show that Jesus had power over death. His death came to set humanity free from evil. He died for their sins. They believe that his blood purified them. The death of Jesus marked the end of offering animal sacrifice as a way of repenting. It brought about the new era of every soul taking care of themselves. This research paper will focus on the history of Christianity as a religion.
According to the holy bible, the first church organized itself 50 days after Jesus died. This was on the day of Pentecost when the Holy Spirit is said to have descended on the followers of Christ in form of a fire. It is during this ordeal that the disciples received the fruits of the Holy Spirit and started speaking in tongues. On lookers thought that they were drunk with wine. Jewish converts were among the first Christians. Later the non-believers known as the gentiles chose to follow Christianity.
Rome prepared the world politically by building roads to ease travel, building great cities where most merchants and travelers took the gospel with them. Postal system spread of the gospel. Peace prevailed missionaries travelled freely. The Greek prepared the world culturally. Synagogues became the first centers of spreading the gospel. Philosophy thinking about the meaning of life, god and the world prepared minds for the gospel. Israel prepared the world religiously. Jews influenced the gentiles to adopt the Jewish religion. Synagogues became the first centers of worship. Paul and Stephen were the first missionaries who planted the church in places other than Jerusalem.
According to research done by editors, the Christian bible is an assortment of 66 books divided into Old and New Testament. The Old Testament was before Christ was born. It is well recognized by Jewish people as it describes their history, origin and their way of life, various laws to be followed. Furthermore the lives of various prophets they believed in were included in the sacred texts (History, 2010).
Majority of these books talk about the lives of the Israelites. They highlight the major lifestyle differences among them and non-believers, Major themes include prosperity among the Israelites whilst sufferance existed among non-believers. Parables were written to explain miracles that were performed by Jesus to show God’s great power. Prophesies about the future were communicated, the birth of Jesus Christ as the savior was their focal point. They predict the coming of the Messiah.
The books in the New Testament were written after Jesus’s crucifixion and resurrection. It was written by the apostles who were with Jesus from the start of his ministry until his death and resurrection. The first three books are known as the gospel which also means good news. These books put into account how Jesus was conceived and brought up by Mary and joseph. It outlines the events that occurred during his birth in the shed, for example the appearance of the angels to the shepherds and the encounter of the wise men with the king who felt threatened by the birth of Jesus. His teachings throughout his home town and miracles he performed. Helping the needy was part of his mission as well as giving hope to the oppressed. They hugely put into account the events of his death from the last supper to betrayal by one of his supporters, death and resurrection of Jesus. Early Christian leaders wrote the letters, well known as the epistles. These letters make up the largest part of the New Testament. They offer instructions on how the church is supposed to be conducted (History, 2010).
Christianity has continued using many Judaic ways of worship such as the liturgical worship, use of altars, incense and routine scripture reading. They use sacred hymns for prayer, have a religious calendar and most still practice male priest hood only. The liturgy is a set of prayers and hymns written in a book and these prayers are recited during a service. This worship is often led by a priest who puts on special robes that are dedicated to the service only. The vestments are a sign of how Jesus wore his clothes when he was alive. In early Christianity, the altar was covered by a veil. The priest was the only one allowed to go in. he would go with a sacrificial lamb and offer it to God instead of the people to atone for their sins. It was during crucifixion that the veil tore in half signifying that Jesus was the last sacrificial lamb and everyone would repent of their sins and be judged individually. They are normally in a divine place that only the priest can enter. They believe that anyone who is not ordained cannot step on the altar. The altar plays a central role in the celebration of the Lord’s Supper, which takes place on the altar where the bread and wine for consecration are placed
Early Christians were subjected to persecution. This was after being asked to renounce their faith but they candidly refused. The Roman Empire prohibited Christianity claiming that it was blasphemy and that Jesus was just posing as an imposter. Those who had faith in him were imprisoned or even beheaded. The new faith caused a stir in the Jewish municipal where they feared that most of their supporters would convert. Persecution meant even death. The Jews chose to stick to their traditional ways. Their leaders chose to live according to the early prophets and men of God. They expected the liberator to make a grand entrance which never happened. The remaining followers of Jesus Christ were all sentenced to death because of believing and spreading the good news. John was the only one who died a natural death. James, Jesus’s brother was stoned to death, peter was crucified upside down. Thomas, Matthew as well as James who is the son of Zebedee died by the sword. Bartholomew, Andrew, Simon, Philip and James, Alpheus’ son were all crucified. Thaddeus was killed using arrows. Persecutions began in the year 64 in Rome on a large scale.
Apostles creed has its roots in apostolic times and embodies, with much fidelity, apostolic teaching. It originated with confessions made by believers at their time of baptism in water. It had an important place in the early church. It was the creed that appeared to be held by the church in all its great branches. Only a church whose doctrines are fully consistent with this creed can accurately be referred as apostolic.
Constantine, a roman empire, legalized Christianity making Rome the first state to recognize Christianity. He was the first Christian emperor. He passed a law that protected Christians and even converted to become one in his death bed. The church mainly spread through the countries surrounding the Mediterranean Sea under the rule of the roman emperor. For example, North African countries like Egypt, southern Europe like Greece, and also western Asia like turkey. The apostles found these countries in a state of spiritual darkness for they never knew Jesus. They practiced animal sacrifices, idolatry as a way of worship. In African countries, they had traditional gods and totally believed in them. This was before colonialism besides preachers. The ministers brought the faith in which many Africans embraced even thou it was not an easy task. The gospel was hence spread far and wide since then.
The middle ages had a united church, sometime later, some people disagreed on various doctrines practiced hence the church divided. They broke in search for power. Catholic Church of the west got established in Rome, acknowledged the pope and started using mass. The orthodox church of the east did not acknowledge the pope but had their patriarchs and used their own liturgy. At this time, there were no Protestants. The western church became disgusting and unbearable because of some of its practices. Reformers like martin Luther could not stand the abuse of faith and morals and as a result, the church broke further into Roman Catholic and other Protestants (the Anglican and Lutheran)
Counter Reformation was conducted by the catholic as retaliation for the protestant retaliation. Its doctrinal teaching was an action against the Lutheran emphasis on the role of faith and God’s grace. The essence was a renewed confidence in the traditional practice and the upholding of the catholic doctrine as well as stopping the spread of Protestantism. Measures were taken against luxurious living on the part of the clergy, the appointment of relatives to church office, as well as the absence of bishops from their diocese offices.
Early Christian controversies existed . Gnostics is one of the groups that were denounced by church officials. The hullabaloo was about the value of bishops and priests and whether there was a need for clergy at all. According to them, each person knows Christ in their own way and there was no need to participate in empty rituals bearing no sanction from Christ. To them, the doctrines were meaningless and people had to learn how to find their way into heaven by exploring their personal spaces.
Arianism fueled a debate out of Jesus by claiming that there is no way one cam be a human being and a deity at the same time. They claimed that since Jesus was the son of God, it’s only right to worship god primarily and Jesus secondarily. The argued that there’s no way that God would be his own son.
In conclusion, Christianity has evolved a lot. It has become a force to be reckoned with. Development in infrastructure around the globe has seen a wide spread of the word. In the early days, evangelists travelled with the colonizers and spread the gospel to lesser countries who knew very little to zero about the bible. They resisted Christianity at first but the apostles were resilient and determined to have the church rooted somewhere. This became quite easy because most of the governments then were oppressors. They often took from the poor, leaving them with absolutely nothing. The common people warmed up to a place of love besides security. With time Christianity developed in to massive movement.
In the Jewish community, they believed in what was written in the scrolls. Miracles were an unusual occurrence. When Jesus started performing wonders he gained a following since what he did people could see and get testimonies. He was inclined to helping the poor and alleviating their pain. He came to preach love, forgiveness and remove the suffering of his people. He educated them more about God and all of his goodness. The faith in God amongst the people grew so strong and this could not easily be broken by the authorities. The support from emperors like Constantine made it even easier for Christianity to get a firm rooting. Today Christianity is the most supported creed and has billions of supporters all over the biosphere.