2: The Martyrdom of a Working Class Hero: Sankar Guha Niyogi, by Vijoy T. Oommen  in  Martyrs in the History of Christianity

Book Chapter by Franklyn J. Balasundaram (ed.)

Sankar Guha Niyogi was an activist organizer of manual workers of various sorts and an aggressive trade Union Leader under severe and repressive tactics of industry and government. His activities became irksome to the establishment which led to harassments and arrests. On September 20th, 1991, he was murdered by an assassin.

Chapter 1: Asia: The Cradle of Christianity  in  East of the Euphrates: Early Christianity in Asia

Book Chapter by T.V. Philip

No contemporary historian has recorded the Gospel’s eastward march, but there is no doubt that the Gospel did move east even while Paul was opening his mission in Europe. And however Western scholars may write their histories of the church, from time immemorial Asia has linked the church’s expansion eastward to the missionary travels of the apostle Thomas.

Chapter 1: Puritanism, Revivalism, and the Revolution by Jerald C. Brauer  in  Religion and the American Revolution

Book Chapter by Jerald C. Brauer (ed.)

Brauer examines how Puritanism’s and Revivalism’s theological beliefs and symbols helped to create a revolution in the colonists’ hearts and minds prior to the outbreak of the Revolution. Puritanism created the center out of which New England society live. Then the Great Awakening not only creatted a belief in the new man which tended to question traditional values; it also created an image of a new age. It taught thousands to question the past and to be open to the future. It transformed some of the central symbols of Puritanism and introduced new values and beliefs which questioned not only the authority and function of Crown and Parliament but also the traditional role and power of established clergy and magistrate.

Chapter 1: The Cosmic Setting as Presented in the Christian Scriptures  in  Christianity Through the Ages

Book Chapter by Kenneth Scott Latourette

Through the long centuries in which God was seeking to prepare the way for the “incarnation” God was seeking men who would willingly respond to “the light which lighteth every man” and slowly was finding some in the small minority of God’s “chosen people” who were struggling to understand what God’s Spirit, respecting their free will, was trying to say through them.

Chapter 1: The Martyrdom of John Wycliff (1324-84), by Philip George  in  Martyrs in the History of Christianity

Book Chapter by Franklyn J. Balasundaram (ed.)

Wycliff is considered as the morning star of Reformation. He initiated and shown forth a bright light of moral and doctrinal reform of the church and society in a time of darkness. Many of the ideas of the later Reformers were reflected in these predecessors. At a special synod in 1382, the Archbishop of Canterbury took strong action against his doctrines. However, he was allowed to end his days in peaceful retirement at his Lutterworth presbytery.

Chapter 1: The Martyrdom of Paul Ni Tsiong-Hoi of Korea, by F. Pachhunga  in  Martyrs in the History of Christianity

Book Chapter by Franklyn J. Balasundaram (ed.)

We do not know the exact date, month and year of Paul Ni Tsiong-Hoi’s date of birth or where he was born. Moreover, the sources do not tell us in which year he died. All we know about him is that he died in prison at the age of 36. We do not know how he died. Details are given of his conversation with the governor and others as he stood firm as they tried to get him to deny his faith.

Chapter 1: The Martyrdom of Polycarp — Bishop of Smyrna, By Priscilla Singh  in  Martyrs in the History of Christianity

Book Chapter by Franklyn J. Balasundaram (ed.)

Christians, a rapidly growing group, claimed on moral and spiritual grounds exclusive loyalty to Christ and opted when confronted with loyalty to the Emperor for the Heavenly king they worshipped. Bishop Polycarp’s martyrdom makes it clear, however, that despite the intense hostility of an apparent majority, the persecutions of Christians in the region of Asia was limited and selective.

Chapter 1: Young Luther  in  Luther: A Life

Book Chapter by John M. Todd

As the oldest child in a stable middle class family, Luther endured a childhood of strict discipline at home, school and church that left him with a sense of inferiority, and emerged into university life at a time of great intellectual ferment that challenged the entire educational system as well as the corruptions of a politically powerful church. In the process he proved himself a gifted scholar.

Chapter 10: The Martyrdom of Archbishop Romero, by M. Reginold  in  Martyrs in the History of Christianity

Book Chapter by Franklyn J. Balasundaram (ed.)

The assassination of Archbishop Romero in March 1980 shocked the world. Oscar Romero lived all his life in the midst of poverty and injustice in Latin America. As the archbishop of San Salvador, he became the leader of the church, and he also became a man who stood for the poor. He became their voice when they were voiceless. He suffered and gave his life for them.

Chapter 10: Towards the Summit  in  Luther: A Life

Book Chapter by John M. Todd

Amid general social unrest the demand for church renewal and reform expanded in a flurry of writings by Luther that evoked an equally strong response from Rome issuing in Luther’s excommunication and a papal bull commanding his appearance for trial at the Diet at Worms.

Chapter 11: Worms and Wartburg  in  Luther: A Life

Book Chapter by John M. Todd

The Diet at Worms was essentially a call for Luther to recant, and his defiant refusal based on scriptural authority evoked a papal excommunication followed by a staged kidnapping by his friends to place him in protective custody at Wartburg Castle. A flood of his writings poured from there into the rising social unrest covering issues like the mass, clerical vows and freedom as well as a translation of the New Testament from Greek into German, and catapulted him into the leadership of the impending Reformation.

Chapter 12: In Command  in  Luther: A Life

Book Chapter by John M. Todd

The Wittenberg Luther found on leaving his refuge disturbed him deeply and led him to voice caution to the forces of change in both church and secular life, and to produce a flow of pastoral writings on all manner of subjects intended to restore order to Germanic society. Meanwhile, he published his translation of the New Testament into German from the Greek text and struggled to preserve a middle ground against voices from both left and right.

Chapter 13: The New World  in  Luther: A Life

Book Chapter by John M. Todd

The major life changes brought about by his leadership in the reforming of the church and his leaving the Augustinian order issued in Luther’s rather sudden decision to marry, which was difficult for some to accept. He adjusted happily to marriage and the birth of a son, at the same time being drawn into the Peasant’s War on the ruler’s side with writings so filled with anger that his influence was compromised.

Chapter 14: Into Battle Again  in  Luther: A Life

Book Chapter by John M. Todd

Following his happy adjustment to marriage, Luther addressed Erasmus’ critiques in an acrimonious exchange that diminished their common concern for freedom. Meanwhile, the ongoing disruptions in state and church caused by the Reformation pulled Luther more and more into public involvements, often at great danger and inconvenience.

Chapter 15: Justice in Society  in  Protestantism in America: A Narrative History

Book Chapter by Jerald C. Brauer

In the early twentieth century many wanted to defend the social and economic system exactly as it was, but that could not be. The social gospel movement might have been wrong in several ways, but in one respect it was absolutely correct — it pronounced a word of judgment against a society that glorified greed and lawlessness, and it bravely attempted to offer a solution on the basis of Christian insights.

Chapter 15: The German Prophet  in  Luther: A Life

Book Chapter by John M. Todd

Although kept at a distance from the Imperial Diet at Augsburg, Luther exhausted himself sending letters, theological arguments and pastoral counsels to Melancthon and others involved at the Diet. The Emperor’s siding with the Pope’s representatives unleashed Luther’s rage and led to his sanctioning military self-defense by the German princes if attacked by the Emperor in attempting to enforce his anti-reform position.

Chapter 16: The Shining of the Sun  in  Luther: A Life

Book Chapter by John M. Todd

Following the conclusion of the Peace of Nuremberg which established the political future of Germany and the organizational future of Christianity, Luther settled into his new life as patriarch and family man, and devoted himself to Bible translation and clarification of the German Mass and liturgy, relying on an incarnational theology and practical spirituality to guide him. Meanwhile, major societal adjustments to the Reformation were taking place throughout northern Europe, and especially in England under Henry VIII and in Switzerland with Calvin. With increasing health problems and depression Luther gradually entered into old age.

Chapter 16: War and the Gay ‘20’s  in  Protestantism in America: A Narrative History

Book Chapter by Jerald C. Brauer

Two main problems faced America during the period of World War I and the era following — the churches’ relation to the rising social and economic problems and the unrestricted competition among the churches themselves. Over these problems the liberals and the fundamentalist fought it out while the conservatives tried to take the middle road and preserve both the freedom and the peace of the church. Through it all the church grew in numbers and prosperity.

Chapter 17: Depression, War, and Aftermath  in  Protestantism in America: A Narrative History

Book Chapter by Jerald C. Brauer

The Great Depression had a devastating effect on the Churches as well as on the nation, for it gave birth to despair and the loss of confidence. The effect of this saw reactionary response both within the church and in society. After World War II there was a remarkable change in theology led by Reinhold Niebuhr and others which resulted in many great preachers entering the pulpit during this era, establishing the beliefs and the theology that underlie action.

Chapter 17: The Old Man  in  Luther: A Life

Book Chapter by John M. Todd

Luther’s final ten years were marred by infirmities and ill health which exacerbated his anger and led to outbursts of rage in tongue and pen, both in his continuing struggle with the papacy and in his depression over the excesses in public morality. Nevertheless, his wife and friends continued to support him faithfully, and the peaceful death longed for finally claimed him in his sixty-third year.

Chapter 18: The Problem of Renewal  in  Protestantism in America: A Narrative History

Book Chapter by Jerald C. Brauer

After the 1950’s Christianity was seen as a minority movement within a thoroughly secularized culture. It was no longer a formative influence that shaped the mores and aspirations of American people despite the fact that Protestant institutions were more numerous and larger than ever before in history. Society considered Christian institutions irrelevant. The church was being challenged to great change.

Chapter 2: Christendom, Enlightenment, and the Revolution, by Sidney E. Mead  in  Religion and the American Revolution

Book Chapter by Jerald C. Brauer (ed.)

When the American Revolution was completed, not only had the Established Church of England been rejected, but, more important, the very idea of Establishment had been discarded in principle by the new Constitution. For the first time in Christendom there was legal religious freedom as distinct from toleration in a commonwealth. A church became a voluntary association, in competition with perhaps hundreds of others. This meant that even while ostensibly defending the authority of the Bible against skeptics, infidels, and atheists, each sect was actually contending against all other Christian groups. Many theologians of the sects continued to talk as if they were the exponents of the normative culture system of the commonwealth, while actually they represented only that of, at best Christianity in general, at worst their exclusive sect. Meantime the intellectuals of the commonwealth, e.g., Jefferson, Franklin, Lincoln, and even Eisenhower, naturally found no real religious home in any existing sect. And many sensitive persons squirmed to have the best of both worlds, usually in the end by giving each a separate but equal compartment in their minds.

Chapter 2: Pre-Christian History  in  Christianity Through the Ages

Book Chapter by Kenneth Scott Latourette

Five questions emerge as this long history is faced. (1) What is the reason for this presence of religion as a continuing accompaniment of human history? (2) Is advance seen in the history of religion? (3) Which if any of the high religions most nearly approaches the truth with which religion is concerned? (4) Is religion to continue, or is it a passing phase in mankind’s long pilgrimage? (5) If religion is to continue, what form or forms will it take?<

Chapter 2: The Martyrdom of St. Polycarp, by By L.H. Lalpekhlua  in  Martyrs in the History of Christianity

Book Chapter by Franklyn J. Balasundaram (ed.)

In our context today where millions of people are in hunger and live in sub-human conditions on account of the unjust socioeconomic and political strictures of our country (India), Polycarp’s faith in Jesus Christ challenges us to identify ourselves with the struggles of the poor and the oppressed for justice and liberation.

Chapter 2: The New Brother  in  Luther: A Life

Book Chapter by John M. Todd

Following his baccalaureate graduation, Luther experienced depression which lifted after he aborted entering the study of law to enter the Augustinian novitiate at Erfurt. His father relented in his opposition to this radical vocational change, and Luther prospered in the structural rhythm of monastic and academic life as he received his master’s degree and moved toward ordination as a priest.

Chapter 3: The Great Awakening  in  Protestantism in America: A Narrative History

Book Chapter by Jerald C. Brauer

The Great Awakening, beginning around 1727, brought about the reality that it was not what man believed but what he did. The emphasis was placed on man’s activity, with less and less regard for doctrine, theology, or the Church as the chosen instrument of God. Thus both the place of the Church and the importance of worldly activity suffered at the hands of revivalism.

Chapter 3: The New Priest  in  Luther: A Life

Book Chapter by John M. Todd

After a comfortable accommodation to monastic life, Luther entered preparation for ordination as a priest, but was plagued by depression about his relationship with God, feeling he could never make himself worthy of God’s love. Meanwhile, he was promoted both within the order and in his academic pursuits toward a doctorate in theology.

Chapter 3: The Revolution and the Civil Religion by Robert N. Bellah  in  Religion and the American Revolution

Book Chapter by Jerald C. Brauer (ed.)

It is the essence of general civil religion that it is religion in general, If we ask what virtue and corruption meant to the founding fathers the answer is clear. Franklin described it as “zeal for the public good.” Jefferson described virtue as “a love of others, a sense of duty to them, a moral instinct.” Corruption is the opposite of “zeal for the public good.” It is exclusive concern for one’s own good. For Jefferson, corruption consists in forgetting oneself “in the sole faculty of making money.” But all religious traditions in America were called in question in the 1960’s. The legitimacy and authority of all our institutions, political, economic, educational, even familial, as well as religious, has now never been shakier. We are not only in an economic depression but in a political and religious one as well.

Chapter 4: The Martyrdom of Thomas More (1478-1535), by Mathew Kuruvilla  in  Martyrs in the History of Christianity

Book Chapter by Franklyn J. Balasundaram (ed.)

Thomas More, the Lord Chancellor of England and a humanist, disagreed with the King on his divorce issue and he refused to take the oath to the Act of Supremacy. He was tried for treason for refusing to the King his titles. He was tried on 1st July 1535 and executed. The Roman Catholic church canonized him in 1935. But in fact the reason for his martyrdom cannot be confined only to the refusal of recognizing the king as the head of the Church of England. As a humanist his words and deeds were the main reasons for his martyrdom.

Chapter 4: The Martyrs of Uganda (1885-1887) by R. Sashikaba  in  Martyrs in the History of Christianity

Book Chapter by Franklyn J. Balasundaram (ed.)

Christian missionaries were at first invited to Uganda, but when the colonial division in Africa occurred the missionaries were identified as White conquerors and persecuted. But still local Christians increased in numbers. Nevertheless, many of these were martyred under the most cruel conditions. These martyrs were “crazy for God,” and did not give in to human weaknesses.

Chapter 4: Wittenberg  in  Luther: A Life

Book Chapter by John M. Todd

After being appointed lecturer in philosophy at the new University of Wittenberg, Luther received a baccalaureate in biblical studies and qualified to lecture in Bible. He was reassigned to Erfurt, and following a trip to Rome on monastery business, was elected a sub-prior in the Augustinian order and awarded the doctorate in theology at the early age of twenty-eight.

Chapter 5: Christianity in China  in  East of the Euphrates: Early Christianity in Asia

Book Chapter by T.V. Philip

There are traditions that Christianity found its way to China in the first century, but the earliest more reliable report is from Arnobius who wrote in 300 AD, stating that the Gospel had been preached in China. A definitely more reliable report comes from Patriarch Yeshuyab II in about 635 AD from an excavated inscription by him which was found in an excavation in 1625 AD.

Chapter 5: The Martyrdom of Marie Skobtsova (1891 — 1945), by Chanda Sahi  in  Martyrs in the History of Christianity

Book Chapter by Franklyn J. Balasundaram (ed.)

It was to the Russian émigrés working the factories of the suburbs of Paris, in the mines and steel works, who had sunk their lives in alcohol and drugs, that Marie Skobtsova was called. When World War II broke out she helped the Jews, but the SS arrested and imprisoned her. The exact nature of her death is unknown but she died in the Ravensbruck concentration camp.

Chapter 5: The Reverend Don, 1512-16  in  Luther: A Life

Book Chapter by John M. Todd

A general sense of unease — social, political and especially spiritual — was found everywhere in Germany, and found expression in Luther’s periodic depressions in spite of his career advancements and popularity as a preacher. Luther only found relief in his struggle with what he saw as a demanding, angry God when he encountered God as the loving and gracious Father of the scriptures, thereby setting the stage for an angry confrontation with the church that had caused him and others so much pain.

Chapter 5: Turning Point  in  Protestantism in America: A Narrative History

Book Chapter by Jerald C. Brauer

By the late 18th century, newly free men faced the mighty task of replacing English control with a government that would express the principles for which they had fought. Driven by necessity and by the Baptist and Quaker interpretations of God’s Word, the nation and Churches decided for religious liberty rather than an state-established church. This was utterly new in the history of Christianity.

Chapter 5: Vibia Perpetua and Felicitas by Thomas John  in  Martyrs in the History of Christianity

Book Chapter by Franklyn J. Balasundaram (ed.)

The martyrdom of Perpetua and Felicitas, though in their early adolescence and females — who are usually considered to be the weaker sex — yet because of their faith in Jesus Christ and their constant dependence on His sustaining grace and power were able to face the discouraging pleas of a father, the sadistic mob and the wild animals in the amphitheatre at Carthage.

Chapter 6: First Encounters, 1516  in  Luther: A Life

Book Chapter by John M. Todd

At Wittenberg Luther emerged in multiple roles — as religious superior, university lecturer, translator, preacher, friend and author. However, it was the need for reformation of academic and church life that evoked his deepest and most profound responses, coming as they did from his own personal struggle for freedom before God.

Chapter 6: The Martyrdom of Fr. Maximilian Kolbe (1941), by Manas Ranjan James  in  Martyrs in the History of Christianity

Book Chapter by Franklyn J. Balasundaram (ed.)

Maximilian Kolbe, a Polish priest, offered his life in substitution for that of a father of a family who had been condemned to die in the Nazi extermination camp at Auschwitz. The father lived; Kolbe died in his place. He was a man who was not concerned for his own future but looked ahead for the future of others.

Chapter 7: Crisis  in  Luther: A Life

Book Chapter by John M. Todd

In publishing his theses for debating the selling of indulgences, Luther gave voice to popular discontent with the church and, though not a new issue, it evoked a strong note of alarm from the church hierarchies and concern by Luther’s friends for his safety.

Chapter 7: Geographic Losses and Spiritual Decay: Partly Offset by Fresh Religious Movements, AD- 1350-1500  in  Christianity Through the Ages

Book Chapter by Kenneth Scott Latourette

From the mid-fourteenth through the mid-sixteenth centuries saw a succession of Moslem conquests, divisions and corruptions in the Catholic Church, healings through an ecumenical council and corruption in the papacy as well as outside Rome. Yet there were indications of continuing vitality despite movements condemned by the Catholic Church.

Chapter 7: The Martyrdom of Dietrich Bonhoeffer, by Biji C. Markos  in  Martyrs in the History of Christianity

Book Chapter by Franklyn J. Balasundaram (ed.)

Bonhoeffer was a Lutheran pastor, a theologian and a great realist. He steadfastly opposed Nazi inhumanity and moved in the direction of Christian humanism inspired by the vision of Jesus as “the man for others.” On 5th April 1943 he was arrested by the Gestapo on suspicion that he was involved in the attempt on the life of Hitler at Smolensk. He spent 18 months in prison at which time he wrote his famous Letters from Prison. He was finally taken to the concentration camp at Fiossenburg, and was hanged on the morning of 9 April 1945.

Chapter 8: Demands from Rome  in  Luther: A Life

Book Chapter by John M. Todd

While the publication of Luther’s 95 theses was intended only for scholarly debate, his challenge to papal authority not only evoked a strong ecclesiastical charge of heresy, but found sympathetic support from the laity, anti-clericals, German nationalists, humanists and the poor and ordinary people who heard him preach, and culminated in his defense by his sovereign, Frederick the Elector of Saxony.

Chapter 8: Revival, Reform, and Expansion, A.D. 1500-1750  in  Christianity Through the Ages

Book Chapter by Kenneth Scott Latourette

The surge of life in Christianity in the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries was seen chiefly in Western Europe. There it had two main expressions — in the emergence of Protestantism and in a renewed animation in the Roman Catholic Church which purged it of much of the glaring corruption of the fourteenth and fifteenth centuries, gave birth to new monastic movements, and inspired the most extensive missionary activity that Christianity or any other religion had thus far produced.

Chapter 8:Christianity In Other Places In Asia  in  East of the Euphrates: Early Christianity in Asia

Book Chapter by T.V. Philip

Contrary to what has been said by western historians, there is evidence to show, though very scanty and fragmentary, that Christianity found its way into South East and East Asian countries even before the coming of western missionaries, through the efforts of Nestorian merchants and missionaries from Persia or India or China or from all the three places.

Chapter 9: The Martyrdom of Archbishop Romero, by Moses Billygraham Raj  in  Martyrs in the History of Christianity

Book Chapter by Franklyn J. Balasundaram (ed.)

Archbishop Romero was a resolute defender of human rights and was known as “The Prophet of the Poor.” The government became so repressive that he called from his pulpit: “In the name of God and in the name of this suffering people whose cries rise daily more loudly to heaven, I plead you, I beg you, I order you in the name of God : Put an end to this repression.” The next day he was murdered by an assassin as he was standing at the Altar.

Chapter 9: The Shock of Augmented Revolution, A.D. 1750-1875  in  Christianity Through the Ages

Book Chapter by Kenneth Scott Latourette

The transition from the eighteenth to the nineteenth centuries was a climax of movements and trends long present but now exploding in the intellectual, religious, political, and economic life of Western Europe. Christianity had become intertwined, seemingly inextricably, with that structure of Western European civilization which the new stage in the revolution undermined.

Chapter 9: What Is the Church?  in  Luther: A Life

Book Chapter by John M. Todd

After the 95 Theses Luther published a vast array of sermons and lectures including The Explanation of his theses in an atmosphere of public and private controversy that escalated into papal charges and a debate at Leipzig with Eck. Eventually Luther ended up challenging the pope, the authority of the church, and in fact the entire structure of European society, in his appeal To the Christian Nobility of the German Nation.

Chapter Eight: The Latest Age (A.D. 1914 to the present)  in  The Unquenchable Light

Book Chapter by Kenneth Scott Latourette

Unquestionably the nineteenth-century world with which the remarkable expansion of the faith was closely associated is largely gone. In some respects, incredible though the affirmation may seem, it is more potent in the life of mankind than ever before. But the age-long conflict, at best at least latent and often chronic or acute, between Church and state, seems for the time to be going against the Church.

Chapter Nine: The Outlook for Christianity  in  The Unquenchable Light

Book Chapter by Kenneth Scott Latourette

By its nature Christianity must always be in antagonism to much in the world about it. Yet it must live in that world, bear witness to the Christian Gospel, and seek to permeate the world with its ideals. While it can never hope to bring the world into full conformity to its standards, it must always be striving to do so. Now and again it will make striking progress. This seems to be best accomplished by organized, avowedly Christian fellowships, the churches.

Chapter Seven: The Fourth Great Age of Advance (A.D. 1815 – 1914)  in  The Unquenchable Light

Book Chapter by Kenneth Scott Latourette

Never had Christianity or, indeed, any other system or set of ideas been so widely spread as in the century which followed the close of the Napoleonic Wars, primarily through the missionary movement. During this period Protestant Christianity, giving rise through its churches to movements for the transformation of society which often had little organic connection with the Church, was having a wider effect in mediating the influence of Jesus to the world than was Roman Catholic Christianity.

Chapter Two: The First and Greatest Recession (A.D. 500 – A.D. 950)  in  The Unquenchable Light

Book Chapter by Kenneth Scott Latourette

Christianity faced a long period of decline which for a time seemed to presage the end of the influence of Jesus. The fall of Rome, the Arab invasion and Islam of the 7th and 8th centuries. In Western Europe Christianity seemed dying from within. However, in spite of the prodigious numerical losses, the largest proportionately which Christianity was to know, by A.D. 950 Christian communities were scattered over a broader area than they had been in A.D. 500.

Chapter<I> </I>4: Christianity in Arabia and Central Asia Christianity Among the Arabs  in  East of the Euphrates: Early Christianity in Asia

Book Chapter by T.V. Philip

When Christianity spread to Syria (probably by the end of the second or early third century) there is no doubt that some of the Arabs also became Christians. Islam which originated in Arabia in the seventh century was a great missionary religion. By the 13th Century, Islam became the prominent religion. Yet numerous bodies of the Nestorian Christians were still scattered over all Central Asia.

Christianity Through the Ages

Book by Kenneth Scott Latourette

(ENTIRE BOOK) This book summarizes the history of the Christian religion, directing attention to the challenges it has met, the failures of many of its most loyal adherents to live up to "the high calling of God in Christ Jesus," and some of the achievements in seeking to make that calling a reality.

East of the Euphrates: Early Christianity in Asia

Book by T.V. Philip

(ENTIRE BOOK) An introduction to the exciting and fascinating story of the movement of the Christian Gospel in Asian lands. The evidence is slight and fragmentary, but there is enough to indicate that while Paul and other missionaries were converting Greeks, Romans and the barbarian tribes in the west, there was a movement of Christianity to the East – Edessa, Persia, Arbia, Central Asia, China and India before the arrival of western missionaries.

Great Debates

Article by Andrew R. Murphy

Book Review: Lincoln and Douglas: The Debates That Defined America. By Alien C. Guelzo. Simon & Schuster, 416 pp. During the third debate of the 2000 presidential election, then-vice president Al Gore stepped away from his podium and wandered over to George W. Bush’s side of the stage while Bush was answering a question. Observers …

Henry Ward Beecher

Article by Andrew` Stern

Book Review: The Most Famous Man in America: The Biography of Henry Ward Beecher. By Debby Applegate. Doubleday, 544 pp. There is something very familiar about The Most Famous Man in America. It is a portrait of a charismatic leader, a brilliant but troubled man who reached the pinnacle of fame only to land in …

Introduction  in  Luther: A Life

Book Chapter by John M. Todd

Martin Luther was a professor at the Saxon University of Wittenberg. An Augustinian friar, Visitor of the group of friaries in the region, often preaching in the town church, at the age of thirty-two he was the successful local man, He had just published his first little book, a translation into German of the seven …

Luther Against the Devil

Article by Heiko A. Oberman

There is hardly any authenticated information about Martin Luther’s first 18 years, which led him to the threshold of the University of Erfurt. What we do have are memories used to illustrate and evaluate later experiences. These memories are colorful and vivid, but they are not in a real sense biographical data. As testimonies to …

Luther: A Life

Book by John M. Todd

(ENTIRE BOOK) The author intends to present the portrait of a man of extraordinary accomplishment in the fields of religion, politics, linguistics and ecclesiology, but also as an ordinary man whose letters and reported conversations reveal his struggle with the ordinary issues of a person of his time.

Martyrs in the History of Christianity

Book by Franklyn J. Balasundaram (ed.)

(ENTIRE BOOK) A biographical account of many Christian martyrs through the centuries, some not well known in the West. Each article is written by a student of Dr. Balasundaram as a project from his class based on the subject at The United Theological College in Bangalore, India. Despite the shortcomings of the text, the bravery of the great Christian martyrs comes through prominently.

Preface  in  Christianity Through the Ages

Book Chapter by Kenneth Scott Latourette

Christianity has had a wider geographic spread and is more deeply rooted among more peoples than any other religion in the history of mankind, therefore it must be of concern to all who are interested in the record of man and particularly to all who seek to understand the contemporary human scene.

Religion and the American Revolution

Book by Jerald C. Brauer (ed.)

(ENTIRE BOOK) An examination of the two primary traditions — denominational biblical tradition and enlightenment utilitarianism — that worked together to contribute to the American Revolution and to create the civil religion which marks American culture to this day. The three chapters are by Brauer, Sidney Mead and Robert Bellah.

Religion and the Constitution: The Triumph of Practical Politics

Article by Martin E. Marty

“It is one of the striking facts of American history that the American Revolution was led by men who were not very religious,” wrote Gordon Wood in New York History. “At the best the Founding Fathers only passively believed in organized Christianity and at worst they scorned and ridiculed it.” When asked why the Constitution …

Resurrected Love: The Death and Life of the Body

Article by Kyle A. Pasewark

The Resurrection of the Body in Western Christianity, 200-1336.. By Caroline Walker Bynum. Columbia University Press, 368 pp., $29.95.   Caroline Walker Bynum concludes The Resurrection of the Body with this judgment on a millennium of Christian theologians: “We may not find their solutions plausible, but it is hard to. feel that they got the …

Sophisticated Primitives Then, Primitive Sophisticates Now

Article by Martin E. Marty

PRIMORDIUM. It’s time to get used to the term. Next to it one might mentally store such words as “primitivism” and “restorationism,” terms that will come in handy for interpreting America’s past. Paradoxically, though they refer to various sorts of pasts, they are also convenient tools for understanding how many Americans are interpreting the present …

Suggestions for Further Reading  in  Protestantism in America: A Narrative History

Book Chapter by Jerald C. Brauer

Barnes, Gilbert Hobbs, The Anti-Slavery Impulse 183 -1844. D. Appleton-Century Company, Inc., 1933. Billington, Ray Allen, The Protestant Crusade 1800-1860. Rinehart & Company, Inc., 1938. Braden, Charles Samuel, These Also Believe. The Macmillan Company, 1950. Carter, Paul A., The Decline and Revival of the Social Gospel. Cornell University Press, 1956. Clark, Elmer T., The Small …

The Vitality of the Franciscan Spirit: Reflections on the 750th Anniversary of the Death of St. Fran

Article by Lawrence S. Cunningham

When Goethe visited Assisi in Italy in the late 18th century, the only thing he found worthy of his attention was the Roman temple in the main square. He indicated no desire to see the frescos of Giotto, Cimabue or the Lorenzetti brothers, nor did he evince the slightest interest in the man who inspired …

Which Luther?

Article by Martin E. Marty

I have lived with Martin Luther for 76 years, since I was christened with the reformer’s name. My father was a Lutheran teacher and organist. Lutheran chorales have provided the cantus firmus for my life. But in only in the past few years, as I worked on a short biography of Luther, did the reformer …