Church History, Volume One: From Christ to the Pre-Reformation

Church History, Volume One: From Christ to the Pre-Reformation

Everett Ferguson
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  • 9780310123491
  • Digital Enhanced Edition
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  • November 26, 2013

  • Theology > Church History

About the Authors

Everett Ferguson

Everett Ferguson

Ph.D., Harvard University

Everett Ferguson is Professor of Church History Emeritus at Abilene Christian University. His numerous academic and scholarly honors include an honorary John Harvard Fellowship (1956–57), a Harvard Graduate School Fellowship (1958–59), a Ph.D. "with distinction" (Harvard, 1960), and selection as the John G. Gammie Senior Lecturer by the Southwest Commission for Religious Studies, 1996–97. He is a member of the Council of the Association internationale d'etudes patristiques and past president of the North American Patristics Society. In 1998, he was presented with a festschrift, The Early Church in Its Context: Essays in Honor of Everett Ferguson, ed. Abraham J. Marlherbe, Frederick W. Norris, and James W. Thompson. Dr. Ferguson has been co-editor (with Elizabeth A. Clark) of the Journal of Early Christian Studies. His other publications include Backgrounds of Early Christianity, Encyclopedia of Early Christianity, Recent Studies in Early Christianity, The Church of Christ: A Biblical Ecclesiology for Today, and Church History, vol. 1: From Christ to the Pre-Reformation.


Church History offers a unique contextual view of how the Christian church spread and developed. It did so, not in a vacuum, but in a setting of times, cultures, and events that both influenced and were influenced by the church. Church History looks closely at the integral link between the history of the world and that of the church.

Volume One explores the development of the church from the days of Jesus to the years prior to the Reformation. Filled with maps, charts, and illustrations, it offers overviews of the Roman, Greek, and Jewish worlds; insights into the church’s relationship to the Roman Empire, with glimpses into pagan attitudes toward Christians; the place of art and architecture, literature and philosophy, both sacred and secular; and much more, spanning the time from the first through the thirteenth centuries.

Course Outline

  • 1. The Setting for the Story’s Beginning

  • 2. Jesus and the Beginnings of the Church

  • 3. The Subapostolic Age

  • 4. The Church and the Empire

  • 5. Heresies and Schisms in the Second Century

  • 6. The Defense against Rival Interpretations

  • 7. The Fathers of the Old Catholic Church and Their Problems

  • 8. Church Life in the Second and Third Centuries

  • 9. Development of the Church during the Third Century

  • 10. Diocletian and Constantine: On the Threshold of the Fourth Century

  • 11. The Church in the Fourth Century: Doctrine, Organization, and Literature

  • 12. Monasticism, Expansion, Life, and Worship: The Church in the Fourth Century

  • 13. Christological Controversies to Chalcedon (451)

  • 14. Augustine, Pelagius, and Semipelagianism

  • 15. Transitions to the Middle Ages: Germanic Migrations, Doctrinal Developments, and the Papacy

  • 16. Eastern and Western Churches in the Fifth and Sixth Centuries

  • 17. The Eastern Churches from the Seventh to Eleventh Centuries

  • 18. The Western Church from the Seventh to Ninth Centuries

  • 19. Decline and Renewal of Vitality in the West: The Ninth to the Eleventh Centuries

  • 20. The Papal Reform Movement and the First Crusade

  • 21. Intellectual Revival: The Rise of Scholasticism

  • 22. Monastic, Literary, Political, and Cultural Activities in the Twelfth Century

  • 23. The Glory of the Western Medieval Church: The Thirteenth Century

  • 24. Portents of Decline

  • General Bibliography

  • Timeline from Christ to Pre-Reformation

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