A Brief History of Communion: Origins

Christians of all sorts partake of some form of communion. Known by different names—the Lord’s Supper, Eucharist, Holy Communion, Breaking of Bread, Mass—and taken at different frequencies—daily, weekly, monthly, quarterly—this practice involving bread and wine stands as a testament to both Christian unity as well as divisions. What do contemporary Christians believe about the Lord’sContinue reading “A Brief History of Communion: Origins”

What Happened to the Apostles?

While Christians often think about the death (and resurrection!) of Jesus, many Christians (especially Protestants) rarely consider how the earliest followers of Jesus lived out their last moments on earth. In part, this is because–unlike with Jesus–we have relatively few historically credible accounts of the death of the earliest leaders of the Jesus Movement. WhatContinue reading “What Happened to the Apostles?”

The Trinity in the Early Church (Part II)

Historian J.W.C. Wand argues that the orthodox belief of the early church included the deity of the Holy Spirit, as it was essentially argued along with the deity of Christ in the Christological debates and was held as popular belief among Christians.[8] Yet as Rebecca Lyman argues that one cannot merely accept popular opinion asContinue reading “The Trinity in the Early Church (Part II)”

The Trinity in the Early Church (Part I)

The doctrine of the Trinity–espoused by the Cappadocian Fathers as “God is one object in Himself and three objects to Himself”–is commonly understood to be one of the more difficult concepts to grasp in Christian theology. Much of Early Church history revolved around debates concerning the Person of Jesus Christ and His relationship to theContinue reading “The Trinity in the Early Church (Part I)”

Scripture in 1 Clement: Composite Citation of the Gospels (Part II)

This post is part of an ongoing series examining the function and use of scripture in the early Christian writing known as 1 Clement. In all, six basic options have been offered regarding the source of 1 Clement 46:8: (1) Matthew 26:24, (2) Luke 17:1-2, (3) Matthew 18:6,[1] (4) Mark 9:42, (5) a combination ofContinue reading “Scripture in 1 Clement: Composite Citation of the Gospels (Part II)”

Scripture in 1 Clement: Composite Citation of the Gospels (Part I)

This post is part of an ongoing series examining the function and use of scripture in the early Christian writing known as 1 Clement. Clement’s relationship with written Christian texts remains far more difficult to parse than his near constant reliance on Jewish scriptures. Arguments have been made for this epistle’s use of nearly everyContinue reading “Scripture in 1 Clement: Composite Citation of the Gospels (Part I)”

The Day That Jesus Died

“When students are first introduced to the historical, as opposed to a devotional, study of the Bible, one of the first things they are forced to grapple with is that the biblical text, whether Old Testament or New Testament, is chock full of discrepancies, many of them irreconcilable…. In some cases seemingly trivial points ofContinue reading “The Day That Jesus Died”

Were the Gospel Writers Eyewitnesses? Conclusions

This post is the final post in a series examining whether or not the writers of the canonical gospels were eyewitnesses to the life of Jesus. What then can we conclude concerning claims that none of the gospel writers were eyewitnesses to the events that they describe? First, on one level it must be admittedContinue reading “Were the Gospel Writers Eyewitnesses? Conclusions”

Were the Gospel Writers Eyewitnesses? John

This post is part of an ongoing series examining whether or not the writers of the canonical gospels were eyewitnesses to the life of Jesus. The Fourth Gospel, traditionally referred to as the Gospel According to John, provides the closest example of explicit reference to authorship, though it too remains originally anonymous. Church tradition hasContinue reading “Were the Gospel Writers Eyewitnesses? John”

Were the Gospel Writers Eyewitnesses? Luke

This post is part of an ongoing series examining whether or not the writers of the canonical gospels were eyewitnesses to the life of Jesus. It should be noted that Luke’s gospel immediately indicates that the author is likely NOT an eyewitness of the events that are recorded afterward. The introduction to the account reads,Continue reading “Were the Gospel Writers Eyewitnesses? Luke”