This book invites you on a journey through some of the regions and cities which have played a pivotal role in Christian history down through the ages. Along the way it provides you with an overview of the history of the church - warts and all - together with reflections on the lessons we may learn from the past.
Stuart Coulton's lively and accessible survey covers the first fifteen centuries of Christian history, centred on Europe, and includes numerous photographs, timelines and text boxes.
Each chapter is divided into three sections:
- the first gives a short introduction to the historical location, providing a feel for the place today;
- the second discusses the story of the church during the relevant period, seeking not only to describe events but also to suggest some reasons for what happened and the consequences;
- the final section offers some reflections to stimulate thought and discussion.
Coulton's ultimate aim is to encourage us to look critically at ourselves, our churches and our communities and to reflect carefully on what it means to follow Christ in a complex and at times confusing world.
Table of Contents:
List of figures
1.Spreading its wings: the expansion of early Christianity to AD 312
2. Setting the house in order: early church government
3. Alienating the neighbours: persecution
4. Defending the faith
5. Standing firm for the truth
6. What must I do to be saved?
7. Change and decline in the Roman Empire
8. This world is not my home
9. Out of chaos: eighth-century Europe
10. The rise of the medieval papacy
11. When clergy ruled the earth
12. Onward Christian soldiers
13. Medieval monasticism
14. The journey to reformation
15. The crisis in the church
16. Why I would like to have a beer with Luther
"Coulton has a gift for taking complicated issues and sophisticated theological questions and making them understandable without minimizing their actual complexity. He also presents fascinating glimpses of what geographical sites look like today." – John Woodbridge
"A great read... full of good, interesting material to help the preaching illustrate biblical truth." – David Cook
"...challenging and stimulating... enjoyable and immensely rewarding." – William Taylor