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Volume VI: Empire and Church in the Time of Troubles
THE STORY OF THE CHRISTIANS continues with VOLUME VI: EMPIRE AND CHURCH IN THE TIME OF TROUBLES.
The Story of the Christians, Volume V, ended in medias res, leaving unresolved the issues of the formation of a hierarchy, the formation of a corpus of sacred literature, the formation of a theology. The reason for leaving these issues unresolved was to draw attention to the point that there was no “arc of history” that pre-ordained or could have foretold how the hierarchy, the sacred literature, or the theology would develop. We now know how certain issues worked out: the monarchial episcopate prevailed, for example, but this was never a foregone conclusion. Certain unforeseen
events (two wars and a complete rebuilding) derailed Jerusalem from being the center of the Christian movement. And a uniform theology will come to the church, but only at the cost of considerable bloodshed inflicted upon Christians by other Christians. The crises which rocked the Roman Empire in the century between the death of Septimius Severus in 211 and the abdication of Diocletian in 305 had a considerable impact upon the evolution and formation of the Christian church; how the church developed was the result of a dynamic interplay between myriad forces. And so in VOLUME VI we now turn to that century, known as The Time of Troubles.
Chapters in VOLUME VI:
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