What form did Christianity take in the first 30 years? Before the Jewish Christians were slaughtered by Rome and before the emergence of the Pauline sect, while the faith was still under the guiding hand of James, the brother of Jesus, what did the pure and unaltered church look like? By examining the Didache, the "Q" document, and the book of James we will look back into the first years of the faith. The difference between the beliefs of the apostles and modern Christianity will astonish you. The Didache is a manual written by the early Christians, a break away sect of Judaism, instructing converts on how to be Christians and how to conduct themselves in daily life. It is a magnificent view of the beliefs and rituals of the earliest form of Christianity as propagated by those who knew Jesus best; his brother and the original apostles. By the time of the Roman massacre of the Jews (66 C.E. - 70 C.E.) there were three major division in early Christianity: the original Jewish Christians, the gnostic Christians, and the quickly growing Pauline sect that was breaking away from its more formal Jewish roots. There was a one in three chance of the Pauline sect becoming the template of the Christianity of today. Had the war between the Romans and Jews not happened or had Paul failed to convert enough gentiles to his sect to outnumber those who followed James we could have a Messianic Jewish-based Christianity today. Our canon and our worship would be different, but because it would have been accepted, orthodox, and traditional, Christians would follow it as they follow the Pauline sect now. It is only by chance, or by the hand of god that the Didache is not the main document of catechism in the church today. 1. Language: English. Narrator: Tom Prodehl. Audio sample: http://samples.audible.de/bk/acx0/115283/bk_acx0_115283_sample.mp3. Digital audiobook in aax.
'Magisterial - an outstanding book that shines a bright light on one of the most important, interesting and under-studied cities in European history. A masterpiece.' Peter Frankopan 'A wonderful new history of the Mediterranean from the fifth to eighth centuries through a lens focussed on Ravenna, gracefully and clearly written, which reconceptualizes what was "East" and what was "West".' Caroline Goodson 'A masterwork by one of our greatest historians of Byzantium and early Christianity. Judith Herrin tells a story that is at once gripping and authoritative and full of wonderful detail about every element in the life of Ravenna. Impossible to put down.' David FreedbergIn 402 AD, after invading tribes broke through the Alpine frontiers of Italy and threatened the imperial government in Milan, the young Emperor Honorius made the momentous decision to move his capital to a small, easy defendable city in the Po estuary - Ravenna. From then until 751 AD, Ravenna was first the capital of the Western Roman Empire, then that of the immense kingdom of Theoderic the Goth and finally the centre of Byzantine power in Italy.In this engrossing account Judith Herrin explains how scholars, lawyers, doctors, craftsmen, cosmologists and religious luminaries were drawn to Ravenna where they created a cultural and political capital that dominated northern Italy and the Adriatic. As she traces the lives of Ravenna's rulers, chroniclers and inhabitants, Herrin shows how the city became the meeting place of Greek, Latin, Christian and barbarian cultures and the pivot between East and West. The book offers a fresh account of the waning of Rome, the Gothic and Lombard invasions, the rise of Islam and the devastating divisions within Christianity. It argues that the fifth to eighth centuries should not be perceived as a time of decline from antiquity but rather, thanks to Byzantium, as one of great creativity - the period of 'Early Christendom'. These were the formative centuries of Europe.While Ravenna's palaces have crumbled, its churches have survived. In them, Catholic Romans and Arian Goths competed to produce an unrivalled concentration of spectacular mosaics, many of which still astonish visitors today. Beautifully illustrated with specially commissioned photographs, and drawing on the latest archaeological and documentary discoveries, Ravenna: Capital of Empire, Crucible of Europe brings the early Middle Ages to life through the history of this dazzling city.