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CH101 - The First Century

The Primitive Church - 30 - 100 A.D.

Outline
Greeks - Seleucids - Romans
Hellenization & Maccabean Revolt
Introduction - Primitive Christianity
The Initial "Jesus" Movement
Christianity in Conflict
Outreach to the Gentiles
Conversion of the Apostle Paul
 
Jerusalem Council
James, brother of Jesus
The beginning of persecution
The destruction of the Temple
Post-Apostolic writings
New Testament Canon, Part 1
New Testament Canon, Part 2

The destruction of the Temple
Only a few years later the radical Jewish fringe led a revolt against Roman control. Nero sent general Vespasian to crush the rebellion. Vespasian dispatched an army of approximately 60,000 soldiers that methodically went through northern Judea restoring order as they went. Some Jews in the insurrection surrendered and were executed by Zealot leaders. The Roman "invasion" came to a standstill at the capital city, Jerusalem. The Romans laid siege to Jerusalem establishing an encampment completely encircling the city. Anyone caught trying to escape was executed, sometimes by crucifixion, and hung on the city wall for all to see.

Nero committed suicide in the midst of a Senate takeover and Vespasian was recalled to Rome where he was installed as emperor. Titus, son of Vespasian, was left in charge of gaining victory in the Jewish revolt. Jerusalem was sacked and the Temple destroyed. Most of the Jews in Jerusalem were killed, committed suicide, or fled. These events were recorded in detail by the Jewish historian Josephus (War of the Jews V-VII).

The death of James led to a dispersing of Jewish believers from Jerusalem and a weakening of the Jewish Christian community. The destruction of the Temple, with the consequent end of the Levitical priesthood and sacrificial system, brought a virtual close to the Jewish religion. There was a continuation of the religious observances, but it was a mere shadow of what had existed before.

Another apparent result of the demise of Judaism and their historic Temple was a growing rift between what was left of the Jewish faith, including the early Jewish Christians, and the now dominant Gentile community of believers. This is most clearly seen in John's writings, especially in the Gospel of John, which includes confrontations of Jesus with the Jewish leadership not seen in the other gospels. John's writings also contain the clearest language and texts pointing to the deity of Jesus and his co-equality with God the Father.

In 1 John we also find the language of separation:

Who is the liar? It is whoever denies that Jesus is the Messiah. Such a person is the antichrist-denying the Father and the Son. No one who denies the Son has the Father; whoever acknowledges the Son has the Father also.   -1 John 2:22-23

...because many false prophets have gone out into the world. This is how you can recognize the Spirit of God: Every spirit that acknowledges that Jesus Christ has come in the flesh is from God, but every spirit that does not acknowledge Jesus is not from God. This is the spirit of the antichrist, which you have heard is coming and even now is already in the world.  - 1 John 4:1-3

Towards the end of the first century we begin to see more signs of the Gentile Christian community pushing the Jewish influence aside. Many have called this "anti-Semitic." This is probably true if we use 21st century standards, but during this time it was voicing the opinion of the majority and the view that Judaism had failed to accept their Messiah. This is brought out clearly in the epistle of Barnabas and the Letters of Ignatius of Antioch and others in the later part of the first century and into the second century.

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First Century Christian Church History
ist Century Church History
The conversion of the apostle Paul
Early Church History of Galatians
James Just brother of Jesus in the Bible
1st Century Christian Church Struggles
Christian History - conversion Apostle Paul
Palestine - Philo, Josephus, Strabo, Aristotle
Apollos NT Hebrews in Ancient Rome
Apollos NT Hebrews in the Bible
Wine in Bible Alcoholic?
James the Just and Jesus in the Bible
Hellenized Jews First Century Christianity
Hellenized Jews Gentile Christians
Hellenized Jews New Testament
Jews and the conversion of the apostle Paul
Conflict in the Early Christian Church
Palestine vs Israel Zola Levitt Dr. McCall
Palestine in the Bible and the Ancient World
Apollos NT Hebrews in the Bible
Apollos NT Hebrews - Ancient Roman World
Palestine Israel in Ancient Greece Rome
Alcoholic Wine - New Testament
James the Just Paul and Jesus in the NT
First Century Christian Church History Issues
How the New Testament was formed
How the NT Canon was formed or canonized
Questions about Wine in the Ancient World
Wine Alcohol in the Bible - New Testament
Early Church Catechesis - Catechetical Training
Questions regarding Christian Issues
Palestine - Israel Map Ancient World
Apollos Alexandria Hebrews in the Bible
Apollos Paul Corinthians - Bible
James the Just the brother of Jesus
First Century Christian Persecution
1st Century Persecution of Christians
Gnosticism in the 1st Century Early Church
Early Church History of Galations
Early Christianity War and Conflict
Early Christianity Constantine and War
Important Issues in Early Christianity
Palestine Israel in Greek Roman World
Apollos Alexandria Hebrews - Bible
Apollos Paul Corinthians NT