Christianity Analysis



Christianity Analysis
Christianity was traditionally understood to be founded by Jesus of Nazareth. Paul of Tarsus, after his conversion on the road to Damascus, worked tirelessly to establish Christianity among both Jews and God-fearing Gentiles of the Diaspora. Clues in the New Testament indicate that there was a significant rift between Paul and the Jewish leadership early in the history of the Church. It is primarily Paul\'s writings which has most influenced the Church today. Christians span the globe and are present on all the inhabited continents and in most of the world\'s societies. As Christianity is a universalizing religion, it embraces all nations and peoples. Major Teachings: Most Christian denominations and sects teach that man is sinful and can never inherit eternal life in the presence of God as a result of the sins of our first parents, Adam and Eve,as well as our own personal sin. It thus became necessary for God to become man in the person of Jesus Christ who as the Son of God was sinless and unblemished. His purpose was to suffer and die in atonement for the sins of all who accept his sacrifice for sin. Individual salvation is dependent upon the acceptance of this atonement. The Church is the Bride of Christ whose purpose is to spread this message, "the Gospel", to all people before Christ\'s return to the earth to rule all nations as the heir to the throne of David. This is primary message of most Christians. Other sects will have variations on this message, and may include many other doctrines they find necessary to their own message or purpose. Scriptures and Other Significant Writings: The New Testament together with the Jewish Bible make up the canon of Christianity. The Roman Catholic and the Eastern Orthodox branches of Christianity also include books in their canons that many Protestants do not, called "the Apocrypha" or the "Deuterocanonicals". Also important are the writings of the early church fathers and early church councils, which established much of the doctrine now considered dogma in the Church today. As of 1986, at least one book of the Christian Bible has been translated into 1,848 languages of the world. A book has been compiled by the United Bible Societies which lists languages alphabetically, chronologically, and geographically Of the present missionary efforts by many of Christianity\'s sects, biblical translation is just one of many. Symbols: The most well known symbol of Christianity is the cross, or crucifix, symbol of the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ. An ancient symbol of Christianity is the fish formed by two intersecting arcs. Often the Greek word for fish, IXTHYS, appears within being an acronym for "Jesus Christ God\'s Son". Major Divisions: The three major branches of Christianity are Roman Catholicism, Eastern Orthodoxy, and Protestantism. There are, arguably, other sects such as Mormonism claiming this distinction due to major departures from orthodox doctrines. Major Holy Days: Although the differing divisions and sects of Christianity may celebrate differing holidays, place emphasis on certain holidays rather than others, or may use a differing calendar, the major holy days of Christianity are: Lent, Easter, Advent, and Christmas The Details about Christianity: Christianity arose as an obscure Jewish sect, and through the dedicated missionary efforts of such persons as the Apostle Paul was distributed throughout the Mediterranean basin. Church tradition suggests that each of the remaining Apostles of Jesus taught in such diverse places as the British Isles and India. After years of official persecution by the Roman Empire, Christianity was embraced as the state religion by Emperor Constantine.Several important church councils were held during this time period to decide on controversies over doctrine. Eventually, the decisions of these councils provided guidelines to determine orthodoxy or heresy. The many divisions and sects now found in Christianity today has been the result of opinions which differed from the established doctrine. The Geography of Christianity: Christianity has greatly influenced the geography of medieval Europe, and later, the rest of the world due to colonization and missionary efforts. Perhaps the most significant contribution of Christianity was the reorganization of Europe from pagan bands and villages into the centrally organized holds of feudal Europe. This reorganization was patterned after the ecclesiastical hierarchy envisioned by the Church and set the stage for all