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We have other stories, like those of Jesus and Apollonius of Tyana, who were born supernaturally, who performed miracles, who delivered supernatural teachings, and who ascended into heaven.

Early Christian art and architecture - Wikipedia

These stories about divine men like Apollonius may sound unusual to us; we are only familiar with the story of Jesus. But in the ancient world, there were lots of stories told of this sort. People in the ancient world were able to make sense of the story of Jesus because they were already familiar with the stories of divine men who had commerce with the divine realm. We have seen the importance of establishing the historical context for Jesus and his followers, including those followers who went on to write the books of the New Testament.

It is important to understand the emergence of the Christian religion in this context of other religions of the Greco-Roman world which were for the most part polytheistic and tolerant of one another. These other religions focus on cultic acts of sacrifices and prayers to the gods rather than on doctrines. They were religions that focused on the effect of gods on the life in the here and now rather than on the afterlife.

And they thought there were divine humans who lived among us. The most important religion for understanding the context of early Christianity, however, is not one of the Greco-Roman religions, but Judaism, which is the subject of the next lecture in this series. Filed under: Uncategorized. You are commenting using your WordPress.

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You are commenting using your Google account. You are commenting using your Twitter account. You are commenting using your Facebook account. Notify me of new comments via email. Notify me of new posts via email. Blog at WordPress. WP Designer. Home About. Ancient Modern 1. Polytheistic Monotheistic 2. Tolerant syncretic Exclusive 3. Periodic observance Constant observance 4.


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Ritual practices Beliefs 5. This World The Afterlife 6. Human-Divine continuum Human-Divine separation. Like this: Like Loading Leave a Reply Cancel reply Enter your comment here Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:. Email required Address never made public. Name required. Post was not sent - check your email addresses! Sorry, your blog cannot share posts by email. By continuing to use this website, you agree to their use. To find out more, including how to control cookies, see here: Cookie Policy.

Tolerant syncretic. Periodic observance. Constant observance. Ritual practices. We will look into texts documenting the diversity of Christian groups ranging from women prophets awaiting the advent of heavenly Jerusalem in a tiny village in Asia Minor to Christian philosophers trying to persuade an educated Roman audience that Christians are better citizens and should be protected instead of persecuted.

We will follow martyrs into the arena and try to look into the minds of Gnostic theologians who despised everything worldly.

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And we will explore the socio-cultural context o early Christian communities by visiting cities like Rome, Lyons, Carthage or Aelia Capitolina former Jerusalem — of course and as always with a keen eye also on relevant archaeological finds. Understanding theoretical questions of religious transformations and inculturation during the Early Roman Empire with special attention to second and third century Christianity;.

Knowledge of and insight into key texts and positions in early Christianity in the context of the Ancient World, including relevant evidence of material culture;.


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Please consult the timetable on the Classics and Ancient Civilizations website. The final grade for the course is established by determining the weighted average. Should the overall mark be unsatisfactory, the paper is to be revised after consultation with the teacher. Although the book offers mostly specialized research, every chapter contains introductory sections which cover topics such as the history of Ephesus, issues of authorship of early Christian texts, and the contents of the works of ancient authors.

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Therefore, academics or students who do not have detailed knowledge of the field will also find it useful. What practical suggestions do you have for teachers or others who might want to use this for the classroom or discussions? It is very easy to find your way around the book because, after the introductory chapters on method ch 1 , scholarship ch 2 , history of Ephesus ch 3 , all the chapters follow the same template.

Each chapter focuses on a particular role of women in society; wives ch 4 , widows ch 5 , social individuals ch 6 and teachers ch 7 examining the Greco-Roman sources in the first section and the early Christian texts in the second section of each chapter.