Synopses & Reviews
Christianity is one of the world's great religions, with more than two thousand years of history and over two billion adherents worldwide. But what is Christianity? Where did it come from? How did it develop to its current forms? What doctrines do Christians affirm? What ethical norms do they endorse? What relationships between church and state do they champion, and why? What changes have transpired for the faith over the centuries? And what new challenges does Christianity face in the contemporary world? These and other questions are addressed in Michael Robinson's Christianity: A Brief History. After a concise description of the social, political, and religious world of first-century Palestine, the text quickly examines the Jesus of history and tradition, including Jesus' impact upon his first-century followers; the narrative then moves to describe the expansions and developments of Christianity through the ancient, medieval, modern, and contemporary eras. Along the way, readers learn of the varied beliefs, mores, rituals, struggles, and triumphs of the faith, as well as of the spiritual heights and moral blunders of its people. Robinson's intention is to introduce Christianity through its story and through those who lived it. ""Writing a text that surveys Christian history is no easy matter--which individuals, dates, and stories to be included and which to be omitted. In this excellent volume, Professor Robinson rises to the occasion, providing an introduction to Christianity from its Hebrew roots and first century origins to its twenty-first century struggles and possibilities. It could not come at a more opportune moment."" --Bill J. Leonard, Emeritus Professor of Baptist Studies and Church History, Wake Forest University ""Look no further. The single-volume introduction to Christian history that is both introductory and still up to date on the latest historical research is here. Robinson's writing style is clear, and yet he does not shy away from complex and difficult issues. In other words, readable and reliable. This book will be a gift for anyone wanting to understand Christianity's past and present."" --David Wilhite, Professor of Christian Theology, George W. Truett Seminary Michael D. Robinson is Professor of Christian Studies at the University of Mary Hardin-Baylor. He has authored several scholarly works, including two books in philosophical theology: Eternity and Freedom (1995) and The Storms of Providence (2003).