Wednesday, April 3, 2013

What does it mean to be Christian?

Lost Christianities book is one of my favorite books about religious history. The author integrates information from several different sources in an engaging tour of what it meant to be a Christian in the first few centuries AD.

New techniques and new document finds have completely re-written what we thought we knew about the history of Christianity. It turns out that the Christian ecosystem was much richer and more diverse than most people understand. The variety of different beliefs held among people who called themselves "Christian" is staggering. Fortunately, new documentary evidence illuminates what these people believed, and what sorts of books they considered to be scripture.

Ehrman also explains the history of the more traditional books in the canon. The New Testament takes on additional life once you understand the history behind each of the books.