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Christian Origins, Paul, Early Church Doctrines, Monasticism

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Andre Maintenay

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World Religions
Christian Origins, Paul, Early Church Doctrines, Monasticism
Reading: Ch. 3 “The Christian Tradition,” pp. 131-174
Largest number of Christians in the world:
1.United States
1st Christian century has had more books written on it
Practically every word of Christian testament has had commentaries written on it
Approximately 2 billion Christians in the world (1/3 of worlds population)
Christianity centered around figure, Jesus
Jesus was born a Jew around 4 B.C.E.
Was baptized when 30-years-old
No idea when date/month of his birth
Not until middle of 6th century that Christians begin to recentaine before and after
the birth of Jesus
Roman date of December 25th and Armenian date of January 6th, both are of later
origin, we dont know his actual birth date
Jesus grew up in northern Palestinian town
Gospels tell us of at least 6 other children in his family (4 brothers and sisters 
Gospel of Mark)
Catholic church views siblings as cousins rather than siblings
Traditionally assumed Jesus’ father died as there is a complete silence of him
Jesus learned stone working/carpentry (father’s trade)
About age of 20, joined preacher John the Baptist solitary, iteanic figure giving
many fiery sermons and preached importance of morality in the context of the
idea that the messiah will soon be coming and it was necessary therefore to be
morally and ethically prepared for his coming who would deliver Jews from their
troubles with Rome
Time in Israel when Romans governed it
Nationalistic feuvere developing in Palestine to regain independence and end the
Roman rule
Shortly after joining John the Baptist, Jesus began preaching

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About age 33, Jesus went to Jerusalem and came into confrontation with Roman
Was trialed and apprehended
Jesus was eventually executed by being nailed onto a cross
Style of execution that was very common during roman times, man Jews executed
in same way
Thousands of Jews crucified following destruction of 2nd temple
Jesus belonged to Messianic age in Jewish time sense of urgency
Expected messiah by Jews is not only to be religious leader, morally righteous, but
also political leader, descendent of line of David fro Hebrew bible
Jesus believed kingdom of heaven would occur during his time urged people to
prepare for it
Coming of messiah, rules of game would change, and new environment would be
open to not only the privileges who could claim great facility, scripture and text,
but also to ordinary people (poor, disenfranchised women, etc) and primary
criteria to get into kingdom of heaven would be moral action, less but not
eliminating other former observances
Jesus wasnt innovating anything new, simply teaching it with sense of urgency
Jesus man of his time, understanding what God wanted of them at the time, what
suited the messiah, out of all the sects they have the right version of the truth
Christianity began as sect of Judaism
Practices that Jesus followed, his teachings, were all Jewish practices
Most of Jesus’ understanding of humanity’s purpose and world view all derived
from his Jewish background
100 C.E. distinct Christian literature began to develop, floating around various
accounts of Jesus’ life and were to be collected into new kind of scriptureNew
Primary sources are biographically narratives called the Gospel
May have been written account of Jesus’ sayings that have been compiled into one
document, translated into Greek, known as Q Gospel
Gospels reproduce Jesus’ saying word for word Q Gospel
Relied on oral tradition generated by witnesses or complied from common sources
whereas Jesus and his companion spoke language Aramaic, all of Gospels
composed in Greek
Gospel of Mark oldest and shortest, roughly 64 C.E. (30-35 years after Jesus
Marks account of Jesus’ life may have been based on recollections of St. Peter
who died in Rome
Gospel of Mark talks little of Jesus’ early life and begins with his Baptist
Gospels of Luke and Mathew are longer
Gospel of Mathew seems to self consciously addressing Jewish audience, as seen
by the language hes using
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