For the next five Mondays, I’m going to be uploading 20-minute church history videos to YouTube on the theme “Spiritual Disciplines and the Expansion of Christianity.” The first video in the series is now up, covering an introduction to the series and Christianity before Constantine:
This is the first in a five-part series looking very quickly at the history of Christianity. I’d like to acknowledge the technical support from Pastor Ben Spears that made this possible — expect better videos as I get more practice!
I do two things in this week’s video:
First, I introduce my theme: spiritual disciplines and the expansion of Christianity.
Second, I run through church history from Acts to around the year 300.
If this were a university course, I would assign the following readings (all available online):
The Didache (c. 90).
Clement of Alexandria, Paedagogus, Bk 1, chh. 1-3
Henry Chadwick, The Early Church, pp. 32-73, 94-100.
Clement of Alexandria. See this page for his works.
Diocletian. See Eusebius, ‘The Martyrs of Palestine‘.
—. Lactantius, On the Deaths of the Persecutors, chh. 7-19.
Ignatius of Antioch. Letters.
Polycarp of Smyrna. Letter.
The evangelism books I mention towards the end
John Bowen, Evangelism for “Normal” People.
Bill Hybels, Becoming a Contagious Christian.
Rebecca Manley Pippert. Out of the Saltshaker and Into the World.
Roland Allen, The Spontaneous Expansion of the Church.
I missed a trick by not mentioning Michael Green, Evangelism in the Early Church.