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

    The History of the Bible: Explore 2,000 Years of Biblical Interpretation and Cultural Impact

    • The History of the Bible Guide

    • 01 Introduction: The Importance of Interpretation

    • 02 The Beginnings of Christian Interpretation: The Jewish Matrix, Part 1

    • 03 The Beginnings of Christian Interpretation: The Jewish Matrix, Part 2

    • 04 The Beginnings of Christian Interpretation: The Jewish Matrix, Part 3

    • 05 Christ Is the Key: Prophetic Interpretation of the Old Testament

    • 06 A Shadow of What Is To Come: Typological Interpretation

  • 2

    Theme II: Spiritual/Allegorical Interpretation

    • 07 Introduction to Allegory

    • 08 The Logic of Allegory

    • 09 Allegory as Spiritual Practice

    • 10 The Problems with Allegory and Its Boundaries

  • 3

    Theme III: Literal Interpretation

    • 11 The Rise of the Literal Sense

    • 12 Sola Scriptura

    • 13 Perspicuity and Fragmentation

  • 4

    Theme IV: The Enlightenment and Historical Criticism

    • 14 The Dawn of Modernity

    • 15 Baruch Spinoza

    • 16 Modern Interpretation

    • 17 The Quest for the Historical Jesus

    • 18 Responses to Enlightenment Exegesis

    • 19 Fundamentalism and the Bible

    • 20 Fundamentalist Exegesis

    • 21 Modern Catholics and the Bible

  • 5

    Theme V: Postmodernity

    • 22 The Postmodern World

    • 23 Feminist Biblical Exegesis

    • 24 Theological Biblical Interpretation