christianity basic beliefs and early history in middle east and beyond

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  • Christianity Basic Beliefs and Early History in Middle East and Beyond
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  • Opening Questions What do you think about Christianity? What are some of the first things that come to mind? Why is Christianity viewed negatively by some people?
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  • Christianity Worlds largest religion Central Belief Jesus Christ was the son of God, died for the sins of all humanity, was resurrected and returned to heaven Must believe this in order to go to heaven Different branches and denominations Catholicism Protestantism Orthodox Christianity
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  • Essential Bible Verse The Bible is the most important holy scripture for Christians. A key verse for Christians in the Bible is the following: For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son so that whosoever would believe in Him should not perish but have everlasting life. John 3:16
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  • The Holy Trinity One God with three parts Father Creator, Master Planner, Holy Son (aka Jesus) Needed as a sacrifice for humanitys sin Holy Spirit Active, sent to fulfill God the Fathers plans
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  • Fall of Man The Book of Genesis (the first book of the Bible) tells how God created Adam and Eve and put them in the Garden of Eden with a command not to eat from one tree. They did, which was the Original Sin. From that point on, humanity continued to get worse in terms of sinfulness. God hates sin. Ancient Israelites sacrificed animals to obtain forgiveness. Christians believe Jesus was sent as the final sacrifice.
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  • Foundations in Judaism Jesus and the Apostles were Jews The first Christians began as Jews The story of Creation, the first people, the Ten Commandments, stories of judges and kings of Israel, and books of prophets are important and read by Christians.
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  • References to the Messiah in the Old Testament Gen 3:15, Gen 22:18, Gen 26:4, Gen 49:10, Num 21:6-9, Num 24:17, Duet 18:15, Psm 16:9-10, Psm 22:all, specifically: Psm 22:14-16-18, Psm 132;11, Isa 7:14, Isa 9:6-7, Isa 40:10-11, Isa 50:6, Isa 52:13-15, Isa 53:all, Isa 60:21, Jer 23:5, Jer 33:14-15, Ezek 34:23, Ezek 37:25, Dan 9:25, Mic 5:2, Mic 7:20, Zech 6:12, Zech 9:9, Zech 9:10, Zech 12:8-10, Zech 13:7, Mal 3:1-4, Mal 4:2-6.
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  • Difference from Judaism Christians believe that Jesus was the Messiah foretold by the Old Testament prophets. Jews believe that the Messiah has not come. Some ethnic Jews do believe that Jesus was the Messiah (they are a minority though) and call themselves Messianic Jews or Jews for Jesus.
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  • The Bible 66 Books in the Bible Old Testament 39 Books, before Jesus came to Earth New Testament 27 Books, after Jesus came to Earth and went back to heaven, letters of advice on how to live for early Christians (no Bible was organized yet)
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  • Old Testament Creation and first people (Adam, Eve, Noah, etc.), Original Sin How God set apart the nation of Israel Exodus and giving of the Law of Moses Conquest of Canaan with Joshua Creating Nation of Israel Nation of Israel (Judges then Kings) Jewish history Cycle of sinfulness, punishment, repentance Conquest by enemies (Assyrians, Babylonians) and captivity Return to homeland, rebuilding of Jerusalem
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  • New Testament Gospels Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John 4 versions of Jesus life; there are other gospels that were not approved to go into the Bible (Gospel of Thomas, who was one of the 12 Apostles) The Book of Acts (Acts of the Apostles) Epistles of Paul and other epistles (Romans, Corinthians, Galatians, etc.) Revelation Apocalypse, Second Coming of Christ, Armageddon, Judgment, the New Jerusalem
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  • Parts of Jesus Christs Life Annunciation, Incarnation and childhood (birth through 12 years old) Public Ministry (~30 33) Passion (events surrounding his crucifixion) Resurrection and Ascension ACTIVITY: Look through the art history books; find a work of art for each of the following: Annunciation, Public Ministry when he was traveling, teaching, and healing people, Crucifixion, Resurrection, and his return as Judge during the end of the world
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  • Incarnation and Childhood Annunciation to Virgin Mary Angel visited Joseph in dream (dont divorce Mary) Nativity Went to Bethlehem for a Roman census; no vacancies; Jesus born in manger (stable) lowly, humble; visited by shepherds and angels appeared to the shepherds Visited by Magi (Wise Men probably Zoroastrian priests) who bring gifts (gold, frankincense, myrrh) Flight to Egypt (Herod wanted to kill the Messiah; ordered the deaths of all boys two and under; Angel warns Joseph in a dream to take family to Egypt and not return until visited again)
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  • Public Ministry Age ~30 Baptism and fasting for 40 days temptations from the Devil Miracle at Cana turning water into wine Miracles Healing the blind, lepers, paralyzed, and demon possessed, walking on water, and even raising people from the dead! Teachings Sermon on the Mount, parables Challenging the Jewish religious leaders Are you really following Gods laws? Are you loving your neighbors as you love yourselves?
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  • Passion of Christ Passion of Christ refers to events leading up to the Crucifixion Entering Jerusalem with Apostles on back of donkey (Palm Sunday) to celebrate Passover Turning over tables of businesses at the temple Last Supper Passover Meal; communion ritual established; Jesus announces that one of them will betray him Betrayal (by Judas) in the Garden and beaten Trials, whipping, beating, mocking, and crucifixion RESURRECTION on the third day
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  • The Twelve Apostles (Disciples) Jesus chose 12 close confidants but had many other followers Here are the Twelve: Peter (orig. Simon)Andrew (brothers) JamesJohn (brothers) PhilipBartholomew MatthewThomas James, son of AlphaeusThaddeus Simon the ZealotJudas Iscariot
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  • Apostles Confusion Was Jesus the Messiah? He was a great leader, teacher, healer, miracle worker but the Messiah? Could he be Moses, Elijah, or someone else reincarnated? Peter the first to recognize him as Messiah privilege of being the rock on which Christ will build his church (the body of Christian believers), holds keys to heaven
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  • Peruginos Christ Delivering the Keys of the Kingdom to Saint Peter
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  • Passion of Christ Christ entered Jerusalem for the Passover. This is celebrated as PALM SUNDAY. He taught and healed people in the few days before his arrest. Celebrated Passover meal (the Last Supper this is when Christ established the idea of Communion; Judas leaves to get the authorities Jesus is arrested in Garden of Gethsemane. He is put on trial by the Jewish Sanhedrin (a group of 60 religious specialists) for claiming to be the Messiah. They bring him to Pontius Pilate; Pilate tries to hand him off to Herod, a Jewish ruler in the region; Herod passes him back to Pilate.
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  • Betrayal of Jesus/The Kiss of Judas Part of the Passion Jewish religious leaders did not want to arrest Jesus in public Judas goes to them and offers to help them Pharisees give him 30 pieces of silver Judas leads them to the Garden of Gethsemane where Jesus liked to bring the Apostles to get away from crowds Judas leads a group to arrest him, identifies Jesus by greeting him with a kiss Guilt Judas commits suicide
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  • Kiss of Judas
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  • Passion of Christ continued Pilate orders Jesus whipped and crucified. Jesus is crucified, taken down from the cross, and put in a stone tomb. On the third day, He is resurrected from the dead. Mary Magdalene and other women went to the tomb and found it empty. Angels talked to them. In one Gospel, Jesus appears to Mary. Mary tells the Apostles. Then, Jesus appears to the Apostles more than once.
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  • Ascension of Christ and Mission to the Apostles Christ takes the Apostles to a mountain and gives them the instruction to teach people about Him. He tells them that people must believe in Him in order to obtain salvation. He also instructs them to baptize believers in the name of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. He ascends to heaven and is seated at the right hand of God-The Father waiting for the day when the Father sends him back to judge humanity.
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  • The Role of the Apostles The Apostles spread Christianity. Peter traveled around the Middle East (ex. Babylon) and established major church in Rome. Philip went to Ethiopia. Thomas went to India. All the Apostles except John (the youngest) died violent deaths. John died of old age. A new man came into the picture Paul. Paul was not an original Apostle but is one of the most important. Paul wrote letters to the early Christian churches (ex. Romans, Corinthians)
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  • Last Judgment Christ will return to judge humanity. Did a person believe in Him as the Son of God? Did a person love God as shown by his actions (obedience, asking for forgiveness)? Did a person love his neighbors as demonstrated by his actions? People will either go to hell or heaven for eternity. God loves people so much that He gives them many chances in life to come to a knowledge of Him. If people reject Him, then
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