Christian History Course

This is a collection of essays and course information from the Christian History Course offered by the Universal Life Church Seminary. We have essays and lesson information.

Saturday, May 24, 2014

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Friday, August 2, 2013

History of Christianity - Lesson 11

History of Christianity - Lesson 11

Don Noenoehitoe

How was Christianity's favorable relationship with the state from the time of Constantine both a blessing and a curse?

It was a blessing because Constantine had favored the church: Edict of Milan, 313 AD.
The church obtained recognition and financial favors, elevated status, protection and respect from their pagan counterparts.
But in return, the state had more say in the church theology and ecclesiastical matters, e.g., the persecutions of the pagans and non-Christians.

2. Were the barbarians the foundation for subsequent Western European civilization only because of their conversion to Christianity? Why or Why not?

Whether it was genuine or politically driven conversion to Christianity, the Barbarians played important roles in spreading Christianity within
the Western European hemisphere; they immersed their old ways and customs toward the newly found belief, in which the church were later predisposed with and injected with Paganism.

3. After Christianity came to Ireland, how did they maintain the light of culture during the Dark Ages?

 Patrick (AD 389 - AD 461) was a gifted organizer; he organized and founded Christianity in Ireland, in which made Ireland - despite the shadows
of Druid religion - the epicenter of Celtic Christians missionary. The Scots followed Patrick's patronage. These will lead to the penultimate rivalry with the Roman Christians toward England: The Anglo-Saxons.

Thursday, August 1, 2013

History of Christianity - Lesson 10

History of Christianity - Lesson 10

Don Noenoehitoe

1. Why was the Roman bishop considered so prestigious among the monarchical bishops?

 Leadership in the midst of persecution and heresy was a practical need that required the expanding of the episcopal authority.
With the formation of the doctrine of apostolic succession, the Roman bishops were elevated; sealed themselves from other schisms
and promoted the the true doctrine and unity among early Christians.
Rome's historical prestige - both Peter and Paul were martyred in Rome - gave the Romans bishops their primacy importance among the monarchical bishops; Vicar of Christ (Vicarius Christi)

2. How did the formation of creeds and the fixation of the New Testament canon reinforce the episcopal authority of the monarchical bishop?

The role of the bishop as the bond of unity in the Christian church was strengthened by the formation of the creeds.
A creed is a statement of faith for public use. It puts forward those things that must be believed for salvation and the theological well-being of the Christian church. Statements of faith in the New Testament that can be viewed as proto-creeds are found in Romans 10:9-10, 1 Corinthians 15:4,
and 1 Timothy 3:16, thus reinforced the episcopal authority of the monarchical bishops.

3. What was required for a writing to pass muster as canonical? Why was the process of fixing the New Testament canon slow and deliberate?

The crucial test for a book to be admitted into the canon was whether that writing had apostolicity.
Was the writing in question written by an Apostle or a person who was closely associated with the Apostles?
Did the writing edify others when publicly read? Did the writing agree with the rule of faith?
Ultimately it was the historical verification of apostolic authorship or influence and the universal consciousness of the Christian church,
led by the Holy Spirit, that yielded the final decision about whether a book or writing was canonical and worthy of inclusion in what we know today as the New Testament.
The process were slow and deliberate due to the existence of other competing non-canonical writings, the time and efforts to determine the authorship and liturgical authenticity of pertinent writings.

Friday, April 5, 2013

The Spread of the Gospels to the Jews

The Spread of the Gospels to the Jews
Lesson 3

Why was the Christian message given first tot the Jews?

Jesus preached the word of the Gospel to the Jews first because he wanted them to embrace the good news.
What was the nature of the Jerusalem Church and at what point did the Jerusalem Church begin to lose its prominence?
The Council of Jerusalem made a decision not to bind Gentile Christians to ceremonial law of Judaism.  This freed Gentiles churches from Jewish control.

How does the spread of the Christian message in Judea and Samaria and ultimately to the Gentiles illustrate the fact that Christianity is oriented toward missions?

The Jewish revolt against the Romans helped spread the word of Christianity, because they fled from Jerusalem.   The Apostles spread the word to Samaria to Gaza and beyond.   Philip baptized a high official of Ethiopian government and Peter baptized a Roman Centurion.

Rev Jim

Master of Ancient Christian History Lesson 2

Master of Ancient Christian History
Lesson 2
The Rock of Christianity

How do we know that Jesus Christ is a historical person and what are the historical evidences?

We have the biblical records, but these can be pushed aside as just propaganda about Jesus Christ.  What does prove that he was a historical person are the accounts written about him from the historians of the time who were pagans.  Also the writings of Flavius Josephus (a Jew) did not believe in Christianity but did believe that Jesus was a wise man.

I have been fortunate to see firsthand the "catacomb graffiti".  One man's grave reinforced my belief in Christ.  It was dated to the 1st century A.D.  He had artist of the time paint his interpretation of what he believed what Jesus look like.

What makes the personality and character of Jesus Christ special?

Jesus Christ was genuineness with a well balanced personality.  Even through his ministry was submissive; Jesus was always himself and feared no man.

How does Christ's person and work constitute the beginning of Christianity?

Jesus worked very hard for three years with his peaceful ministry.  He had selected his 12 apostles to teach them on his journey.  After his death at the hands of the Romans, the apostles carried the word of Jesus throughout the known world.

Rev. Jim