You are invited to journey back 2,000 years to the very start of Christianity and track 450 years of its fascinating early development. 

In Christian Origins 101, you will explore the rich history, early leadership, and groundbreaking theology, of early Christianity. Through 30 erudite lectures, you will focus on six major themes: the early Church’s relationship with its Jewish heritage, the Gnostic movement, Christianity and the Roman Empire, the early Church and women, debates about Jesus’ divinity in the fourth century, and debates about Jesus’ humanity in the fifth century. Each of these themes served as a locus for significant debates about the nature of Christian beliefs and practices. 

In exploring the fundamental questions that challenged Christianity from the Apostolic Age to the Council of Chalcedon in 451 AD, you will gain a deep understanding of the roots of the beliefs Christians hold dear. By learning about Christianity’s remarkable origins and development, you will gain a richer understanding of the Church today. 

You will find these lectures extraordinarily well taught, highly informative and enjoyable.

Course curriculum

    1. Christian Origins Study Guide

    2. 01 Introduction: The Early Church and Judaism

    3. 02 The Early Church and the Torah

    4. 03 Finding Christian Meaning in the Old Testament: The Case of Justin Martyr

    5. 04 Christian and Jewish Identities in the Second Century: Who Is the Heir to God’s Covenant?

    6. 05 Gnosticism, Ptolemy, and the Old Testament

    7. 06 Gnostic Cosmology

    8. 07 Gnostic Views of Christ and Christianity

    9. 08 Reactions to Gnosticism: The New Testament Canon

    10. 09 Reactions to Gnosticism: Ignatius and the Episcopal Structure

    11. 10 Reactions to Gnosticism: Irenaeus, Apostolic Succession, and the Rule of Faith

    12. 11 Reactions to Gnosticism: Tertullian, Irenaeus, and the Stereotype of Heresy

    13. 12 The Spread of Christianity in the Empire

    14. 13 Apologies for the Faith

    15. 14 Persecution and Martyrdom

    16. 15 The Conversion of Constantine

    17. 16 Surveying the Evidence about Women in Early Christianity

    18. 17 Paul’s Perspective on Women in the Church

    19. 18 The Pauline Legacy in the Pastoral Epistles and the Acts of Thecla

    20. 19 A Positive or Negative Tale for Early Christian Women?

    21. 20 Early Christian Views of Jesus

    22. 21 Logos Christology

    23. 22 Arius and Arianism

    24. 23 The Council of Nicea

    25. 24 Alexander and Athanasius

    26. 25 After Nicea

    27. 26 The Trinity and the Council of Constantinople

    28. 27 The Logos-Sarx Christology of Alexandria

    29. 28 The Logos-Anthropos Christology of Antioch

    30. 29 Nestorius of Constantinople and Cyril of Alexandria

    31. 30 The Council of Chalcedon

About this course

  • Free
  • 31 lessons
  • 0 hours of video content