Church History Summary
AUTHOR: Kennedy, Tod M.
PUBLISHED ON: March 17, 2003

HIS:Church History Summary  by Tod M. Kennedy, 1980*

    1.  The Apostolic Period, AD 30-100.
          1.1.  Review of the apostles James, Peter,Paul, and John.  See Bible
          1.2.  Missionary expansion in Acts.  See Chronology of Acts.
          1.3.  The NT canon was written.  See Bible Survey.
          1.4.  Persecution  was local and sporadic until c. 250.  Nero (r.
          54-68), Domition (r. 81-90).
          1.5.  Church  organization in  the  first century
          (elder=overseer=P/T,  local.  See doctrines) was  different from the
          church which soon  developed (overseer over elders).
          1.6. Beginning, foundation,  documentation, spread of church.

    2.  The Post-Apostolic Church And The Struggle +For Survival, AD 100-
          2.1.  Persecutions and the martyr complex.  Causes:    exclusiveness
          in  political,  religious, social, economic life.  Edict of Milan
          (Constantine, 313).
          2.2.    Doctrinal    and    philosophical controversies.
          Ebionites,  Gnosticism,  Marcion (c.  150), Manichaeism,
          Neoplatonism, Montanism (Montanus c. 150), Monarchianism.
          2.3.  Doctrinal developments.  Monarchial bishop, primacy of Rome
          in dignity and honor by 250, then  in jurisdiction and authority.
          Formation  of canon  (c.  175).  Theology proper and  Christology
          beginning to be thought out and formulated.
          2.4.  Important  persons  of this period.  Fathers,  Apologists,
          Polemicists.  Clement of Rome (c.  95),  Ignatius (d.c. 110),
          Polycarp (d.c. 155), Tertullian (c. 150-240), Justin Martyr (c. 100-
          166), renaeus (b.c.  120),  Cyprian (c.  200-258), Origen (c. 185-

    3.    The  Imperial  Church  consolidates  And Expands, AD 313-590.
          3.1.    The  political  scene  and  some emperors.    Constantine
          (r.  306-337)  legalized Christianity.    Theodosius  (r.  379-
          395) made it illegal to depart Nicene faith.
          3.2.  Church  councils.  Nicea  in  325, essence and trinity.
          Constantinople in 381, restate Nicene    and    add  HS.
          Ephesus    in    431, Nestorian/Pelagian.  Chalcedon in 451, the
          Person of Christ.
          3.3.  Canon of NT was officially closed by end  of  fourth century.
          In the  east  Athanasius’ Easter letter (367) lists all 27 books.
          In the West through Jerome and Augustine at two African councils
          (Hippo  393,  Carthage 397) and then ratified by the Roman bishop.
          3.4.  Doctrinal  developments.  Theology proper, Christology,
          Anthropology, Donatist.
          3.5.  Monasticism.  Stages:  Aceticism, hermit  life,  cloister
          life,  orders.  Poverty, celibacy, obedience. Misunderstood
          priorities in the Christian Way of Life.
          3.6.  Missions.  Migrations  of peoples.  Ulfilas (c.  311-383) to
          Goths.  Martin of Tours (c.  316-396)  to Burgundians.  Clovis,
          king of  Franks (d.511),  to Franks.  Soldiers, merchants to British
          Isles.  Patrick (c.  389-461) to Ireland.  Columba (c. 521-597) to
          3.7.  Important persons.  Arius (d.336), Athanasius  (c.296-373),
          Jerome,  (c.  340-419), Augustine (354-430),  Eusebius of Caesarea
          (c.  260- 340),  John  Chrysostom (347-407).  Leo the  Great,
          Bishop  of Rome from 440-461,  preeminence of  Roman Bishop as
          Peter’s successor, administrator, enforced church uniformity,
          protected Rome.

    4.  The  Rise  Of  The Church Empire  And  Its Missionary Expansion, AD
          4.1.  The  growth of the papacy  and  its relationship  to the Holy
          Roman Empire.  Leo I  (p.  440-461).  Gregory the Great (p. 590-
          604), true pope in  fact,  maintained Roman bishop had  jurisdiction
          over  whole church,  conflict with Eastern  bishops, civil duties,
          great doctor of RCC in moral theology.  RC Franks (Charles Martel,
          689-741, Pepin the Short, 714/15-768,  Charlemagne,  742-814.
          Charlemagne controlled France,  Germany,  Hungary, Italy, Spain)
          and  popes  cooperated to defeat the Barbarians  and rule  Europe.
          Charlemagne crowned Emperor  of  the Romans  by  Pope Leo III on 25
          December  800.  Re- established old Roman Empire in the West.
          4.2.    Missionary  expansion.    Islam (Mohammed,  570-632).
          Expansion  in British  Isles resulted  in  Whitby (663) and  Roman
          Christianity.  Germany (Boniface 680-754).
          4.3.        Doctrinal      controversies.  Monotheletic  (690),
          Saint and Image Worship (787), Filioque (9th),  Adoptionism  (9th),
          Predestinarian (9th), Eucharistic (9th and 11th).

    5.  Movements Within The Church And Between The church And State, AD 800-
          5.1.  The Holy Roman Empire.  Charlemagne died 814.  His son,
          Louis the Pious ruled 814-840.  Sons  of  Louis  the Pious divided
          the kingdom  in Treaty of Verdun (843).  Charles the Bald (France),
          Louis (Germany), Lothair (Central Corridor).  Treaty of  Mersin
          (870).  Germany.  Otto I  (912-973),  A German  king and emperor of
          Saxon dynasty.  Crowned Emperor  of  the Holy Roman Empire in  962
          by Pope John XII.  Holy Roman Empire extended from 962-1806.
          5.2.  Feudalism.  System  of  government based upon land.  Manor,
          lord, feudal knight, serf, priest.  Beneficial  to  society.
          Church  entered feudalism.
          5.3.  Decretals  and  Transubstantiation.  Decretals  are papal
          letters with the force of  law.  False  decretals  were  forgeries
          used  in  9th-11th centuries    to    strengthen    papal
          supremacy.  Transubstantiation developed by Radbertus in 831.
          5.4.  Separation of Roman and Greek Church 1054.  Began in 330 with
          5.5.  Monastic  reform  began  in  Cluny, Eastern France in 910.

    6.    Papal  Supremacy  And  The  Rise  of Scholasticism, AD 1054-
          6.1.    The  rise  and  fall  of  papacy.  Hildebrand became Pope
          Gregory VII in 1073.  College of Cardinals,  dictatus papae,
          Investiture Struggle.  Innocent  III (p.  1161-1216)  was zenith of
          papacy.  Henry  IV (1077),  Philip (1200),  John (1213)  were
          goats.  Boniface  VIII (p.  1274-1303)  low  point.  Clericis
          Laicos (1296), unam sanctum (1301).
          6.2.  The Crusades, 1095-1291.  Holy Wars against  enemies of cross
          to recapture Palestine for Christianity.    Seven  major  crusades.
          Religious failure.  National changes.
          6.3.    Scholasticism.    An  intellectual movement  to  strengthen
          faith  by  reason  through rationalizing  theology.
          Rationalize,  arrange existing  content.    RCC.    Summa
          Theologica.  Universities c. 1200.
          6.4.  Sacraments.  Developed in twelfth- thirteenth  centuries.
          Contain  and  cause  grace.  Baptism,  confirmation,  eucharist,
          penance, extreme unction, ordination, marriage.
          6.5.  Monastic reform.  Reform, new orders (Dominicans), military
          6.6.  Lay  reform.  External  forces  of reform.  Albigenses,

    7.  Preliminaries To The Reformation, AD 1305-1517.
          7.1.  Roman  Catholic Church.  Abuse  of authority  and power,
          Babylonian  Captivity  (1309- 1377),  Great Schism (1378-1417),
          decline in clergy and spiritual life.
          7.2.  The Renaissance and Humanism.  The period  of accelerated
          transition from  medieval  to modern    life  in  Europe
          (fourteenth-sixteenth centuries).  Humanism  was the rebirth of
          classical learning within this transition.  Northern (Erasmus)
          and  Southern  (Petrarch).    Involved  classical learning  and
          languages,  man  centered,  secular, individualistic world view.
          Emphasized  confidence in  human  nature  and  education,
          theological skepticism, natural religion.
          7.3.    Mysticism.  Movement  by  man  to experience  presence of
          God.  Subjective experience without  objective  authority.
          Faith  active.  Minimized Bible Doctrine.
          7.4.  Forerunners  of Reformation.  John Wycliff (1329-1384),  Jan
          Hus  (1373-1415),  William Savonarola (1452-1498).  Bible the
          central force.
          7.5.      Other    factors.    National consciousness, printing
          press (John of Guttenburg c.  1456), world exploration.

    8.  The    Reformation  And  The  Counter Reformation, AD 1517-1648.
          8.1.    Causes.    Indirect  causes  were political,  economic,
          intellectual,  moral, social, theological.  Direct  cause was sale
          of indulgences in Germany.  Albert of Mainz.  Tetzel.
          8.2.  German.  Martin Luther (1483-1546).  95  theses,  31
          October  1517  in  Wittenberg.  Heidelberg,  Augsburg,  Leipzig,
          Worms,  Wartburg, Wittenberg,  Diets  of  Speyer,  German
          Bible.  Katherine Von Bora (1525).  Strong leader, student,
          writer,  preacher. Bible, faith, priesthood.  Philip Melanchthon
          (1497-1560).    Theologian.    Wrote Lutheran creeds.
          8.3.  German Swiss.  Ulrich Zwingli (1484-1531).    Priest,
          patriot,  student.    Zurich.  Disputations.  Second Battle of
          Kappel.  Heinrich Bullinger (1504-1575).  Pastor.
          8.4.  French Swiss.  John Calvin  (1509-1564).  Universities  of
          Orleans,  Bourges,  Paris.  Lawyer.  Basal, Geneva.  Student,
          thinker, exegete, theologian,  writer,  teacher.  Institutes
          (four editions), commentaries.  Reformed Theology.  TULIP.
          Theodore    Beza  (1519-1605).    Good    exegete, theologian.
          8.5.  Anabaptist Tradition.  Conrad Grebel (1498-1526), Felix Manz
          (1498-1527), George Blaurock (1491-1529),  Menno Simons (149601561).
          Maligned , three disputations in Zurich,  many martyrs.  Bible,
          faith,    believer’s  baptism,  gathered  church.  Separation  of
          church and  state,  many  pacifists. Some radicals (Munster).  Most
          8.6.    English  Reformation.    Lollards, William Tyndale (1494-
          1536).  Henry VIII (r.  1509-1547)  wanted  male heir.  Edward VI
          (ruled  1547- 1553),  Book  of Common Prayer,  42 Articles.  Mary
          Tudor (r.  1553-1558),  RC,  martyrs.  Elizabeth (r. 1558-1603),
          Settlement of 1559, 39 Articles, Church of Middle Way.  Thomas
          Cranmer (1489-1556).  Church of England.  Puritans.
          8.7.  Roman Catholic Counter Reformation.  Internal/external.
          Authority  of  Pope,  orthodox, change moral and religious life.
          Spain (Ximenes c.  1436-1517).  Theologians, reforming orders
          (Jesuits, Ignatius  of  Loyola  1491-1556,  authorized  1540),
          reforming popes (Paul III,  p.  1534-1549).  Index, inquisition,
          writing,  anti-Protestant.  Council of Trent  (1545-1563),  official
          RC theology and  papal authority.

Tod M. Kennedy, 1980*
*Periods 1-4 completed 1979,  revised 1980.  Periods
5-8 completed 1980.  Periods 9-11 to be added at  a
later date.

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