I.THE APOSTOLIC CHURCH
From the Ascension of Christ, 30 A.D, To the death of St. John, 100A.D
II. THE PERSECUTED CHURCH
From the Death of St. John, 100A.D, To the Edict of Constantine, 313A.D.
III. THE IMPERIAL CHURCH
From the Edict of Constantine, 313A.D, To the Fall of Rome, 476A.D.
IV. THE MEDIEVAL CHURCH
From the Fall of Rome, 476 A.D, To the Fall of Constantinople, 1453A.D.
V. THE REFORMED CHURCH
From the Fall of Constantinople, 1453 A.D,To the end of thirty years’ War, 1648 A.D.
VI. THE MODERN CHURCH
From the End of Thirty Years’ War, 1648 A.D, To the Twentieth Century, 1970 A.D.
FIRST GENERAL PERIOD- THE APOSTOLIC CHURCH
From the Ascension of Christ, 30 A.D, To the Death of St. John, 100 A.D.
THE PENTECOSTAL CHURCH
I. From the Ascension of Christ, 30 A.D, To the Preaching of Stephen, 35 A.D.
1. Definition of the Church
2. Its Beginning: The Day of Pentecost, 30 A.D.
3. Its Endowment: The Holy Spirit
4. Its Locality: The City of Jerusalem.
5. Its Membership:
ii) Grecian Jews or Hellenists.
6. Its Leaders: St. Peter, St. John.
7. Its Government: by the Twelve Apostles.
8. Its Doctrines:
i) The Messiahship of Jesus.
ii) The Resurrection of Jesus.
iii) The Return of Jesus.
9. Its Gospel Testimony.
10. Its Miracles.
11. Its Spirit of Brotherhood: “Community of Property.”(?)
ii) Small Community.
iii) Selected People.
iv) Expecting Christ’s Return.
v) A Financial Failure.
vi) Developing Moral Evils.
12. The one Direct of the Pentecostal Church: Its Lack of Missionary Zeal.
II. THE EXPANDING CHURCH, 35-50 A.D
From the Preaching of Stephen, 35 A.D. To the Council at Jerusalem, ca 48 A.D.
i) Stephen’s Preaching.
ii) Saul’s Persecution.
iii) Philip in Samaria.
iv) Peter at Joppa and Caesarea.
vi) The Church at Antioch.
vii) The first Missionary Journey.
i) Two Workers in Union.
ii) A Younger Man as Helper.
iii) Large Cities as Fields of Labour.
iv) Beginning in the Synagogue.
v) Revisiting the Church Founded.
viii) The council at Jerusalem, ca. 48 A.D.
III. THE CHURCH AMONG THE GENTILE, A.D ca. 48-68
Council at Jerusalem, ca 48 A.D, To the Martyrdom of St. Paul, 68 A.D.
iv) Leaders: St. Paul, St. Peter, James.
v) Missionary Journeys of St. Paul.
1. The Second Journey: Europe visited.
2. The Third Journey: The Church at Ephesus.
3. The Forth Journey: Paul a Prisoner.
vi) The First Imperial Persecution. (Nero)
vii) Literature of the Period.
IV. THE AGE OF SHADOWS, 68-100 A.D
From the Martyrdom of St. Paul, 68 A.D, To the Death of St. John, 100 A.D.
i) The Fall of Jerusalem, 70 A.D.
ii) The Second Imperial Persecution( Domitian), 90 A.D.
iii) The Completion of the New Testament.
iv) The Condition of the Church.
1. Extent and Numbers.
2. Doctrinal System.
3. Institutions: (a) Baptism (b) The Lord’s Day. (c) The Lord’s Supper. ( d) Easter Sunday.
4. Its Officers: (a) Apostles (b) Elders or Bishops (c) Deacons. 5. Its Worship.
6. Its Spiritual State.
THE SIX GENERAL PERIODS OF CHURCH HISTORY
Before we enter upon a detailed study of the nineteen centuries through which the Church of Christ has been at work, let us take our stand upon a mountain-up of vision, and view, as in a landscape, the entire field which, step by step, we are to traverse. From the viewpoint of today, in this amazing twentieth century, we look back and see rising, here and there above the plains of time, like successive peaks, the great events of Christian history, which serve as points of division, each marking the end of one epoch and the beginning of another. WE count these turning-points, and find them sex in number, indicating the Six Great Periods in the history of the church. Let us in this opening chapter take a general view of these periods.
The height which marks the starting-point of the Church of Christ is the Mount of Olives, just outside the eastern wall of Jerusalem. Here, about the year 30 A.D; Jesus Christ, newly risen from his tomb in the garden, gave his last commands, and then ascended to his heavenly throne. We see a little company of Jews, believers in their departed Lord as the Messiah-King of Israel, tarrying for a time in Jerusalem, at first with no thought of a church outside the bounds of Judaism; gradually widening their views and their ministry their vision embraced the winning of the world to Christ. Under the leadership of St. Peter, St. Paul and their immediate successors the church was established within two generation in nearly every land from the Euphrates to the Tiber, and from the Black Sea to the River Nile. The first period ends with the death of St. John, the last of the twelve apostles upon earth, which is said to have taken place about 100A.D. This epoch we call “The Period of the Apostolic Church.”
For more than two hundred years succeeding the Apostolic Age we look upon the church under the sword of persecution. During all the second century, all the third century, and in the early years of the fourth century, the mightiest empire upon earth invoked all its power to destroy what was called “the Christian superstition.” For seven generations a noble army of martyrs, by the thousands, won their crowns through the axe, the wild beasts in the arena, and the fiery stake. Yet in the face of the most relentless persecution, the followers of Christ increased in number, until they counted, in public or in secret, a large part of the population of the Roman Empire. At last a Christian emperor sat upon the throne and by his edict stayed the tide of slaughter.
Apparently the Christians, so long oppressed, at one step passed from the prison to the throne; for the persecuted Church became the imperial church. The cross took the place of the eagle as the standard of the nation, and Christianity was made the religion of the Roman empire. A Christian capital, Constantinople, arose and displaced old Rome; but Rome as it ceased to be heathen began to arise as the capital of the church. The western Roman Empire was overwhelmed by barbarian hordes, but these conquerors were conquered by the church, and founded not heathen but Christian nations in Europe.
With the fall of the western Roman Empire begins the period of a thousand years, known as the Middle Ages. At its opening we see Europe in chaos, a continent of tribes uncontrolled by any central power, but gradually shaping themselves into kingdoms; we see the Roman bishop, as pope, endeavoring to dominate not only the church but the world; we see the religion and empire of Mohammed conquering all the lands of early Christianity; we see the Holy Roman Empire established, and its emperors warring with the popes; we watch the romantic movement of the Crusades, in the vain endeavor to rest the Holy Land from its Moslem masters; we see the awakening of Europe with the promise of a coming reformation in the new age. As ancient history ends with the fall of Rome, so medieval history ends with the fall of Constantinople.
After the fifteenth century with the awakening of Europe, came the sixteenth century with the reformation of the Church. We beheld Martin Luther nailing his declaration upon the cathedral door; making his defense before the emperor and the nobles of Germany; and rending shackles from the consciences of men. We see the Church of Rome torn in two by the people of northern Europe breaking away and establishing their own national churches of a purer type. But we see also a counter-reformation begun in the Catholic lands, staying the process of reform; until at last after the terrors of a thirty years’ civil war in Germany, by the Peace of Westphalia, in 1648, the lines are permanently drawn between the Roman Catholic and the Protestant nations.
We shall pass in rapid review the great movements that have stirred the churches and the people in the last three centuries, in England, on the continent of Europe, and in America: the Puritan, the Wesleyan, the Rationalistic, the Anglo-Catholic, and the modern missionary movements, which have contributed to the building up of the church of our own time, and have made it, notwithstanding its myriad forms and makes, one church throughout the world. formed Christianity in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries, into a mighty organization, not only for the glory of God but for the service of men, in reforms, in social uplifting, in active efforts for the betterment of mankind.
- First Pentecostal Church of Christ Spring Women’s Conference 4/20/13 (theteasisters.wordpress.com)
- GP took patient to church for exorcism, hearing told (telegraph.co.uk)
- Pastor Adeboye’s Private Jet Stirs Serious Controversy (lowkeytech.wordpress.com)
- GP ‘told patient to stop taking medication and took her to Pentecostal church where she underwent exorcism’ (dailymail.co.uk)
- Australia: Mental health groups point finger at churches over gay aversion therapy (dailyqueernews.wordpress.com)
- Combined Churches’ Ascension Day Service, 9 May (bransgore.org)
- The Image of Man Has Been Raised Up: On the Feast of the Ascension of the Lord (insightscoop.typepad.com)
- Race, Sex and Liberation: Pentecostal Studies President Steers Society in New Direction (juicyecumenism.com)
- 2 of 2 … Promises Kept … 4/7/2013 (angelawatkinsblog.wordpress.com)
- The Power of a Testimony (posichurch.wordpress.com)