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Early Church History Collection (7 vols.)
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Overview

The Early Church History Collection contains excellent primary sources for the student of history and theology, offering the writings of many important figures in the first four hundred years of the Church. We see how the early church prayed and sang, worshiped and preached, and what they believed as fundamental to their faith. We learn how the church was affected by persecution and heresy and the cultures in which they lived and why it was important for them to formulate proper doctrines of the Trinity and of Christ.

Individual Titles

A New Eusebius: Documents Illustrating the History of the Church to AD 337, Second Edition

  • Editors: J. Stevenson, revised by W. H. C. Frend
  • Publisher: SPCK
  • Publication Date: 1987
  • Pages: 430

A New Eusebius has held an unrivaled position as the standard source book for students of the early patristic period. Stevenson has gathered an impressive compilation of documents, including the Martyrdom of James, the Flight of the Christians from Jerusalem, and Persecution by Domitian, from such writers as Eusebius, Clement of Rome, Ignatius, Polycarp, Justin, and Irenaeus. These primary sources, covering church history up to AD 337, are invaluable for those who desire to understand early church history. In this new edition, Professor W.H.C. Frend has incorporated vital documents that were not available when the original collection was compiled. The notes and references have been amended and updated where necessary, and the entire book has been restructured with documents grouped under helpful subject headings which follow a broadly chronological sequence.

Here is a first-rate introduction to the history and doctrine of the early Church, a work of scholarship which will serve theologians and historians alike for a long time to come.

Church of England Newspaper

This book can be warmly recommended to anyone who wishes to learn from primary sources the story of the Early Church.

Baptist Times

J. Stevenson (d.1983) was a Fellow of Downing College, Cambridge.

W. H. C. Frend (1916-2005) was Chair of Ecclesiastical History of Glasgow University, a Fellow of the British Academy, and a Fellow of the Society of Antiquaries of London. He was the author of Martyrdom and Persecution in the Early Church and The Rise of Christianity.

Creeds, Councils and Controversies: Documents Illustrating the History of the Church, AD 337 - 461, New Edition

  • Editors: J. Stevenson, revised by W. H. C. Frend
  • Publisher: SPCK
  • Publication Date: 1989
  • Pages: 431

For over forty years, Creeds, Councils and Controversies has been an essential primary source book for students of the later patristic period. Like its predecessor, A New Eusebius it documents the history of the early Church, covering AD 377 to 461. Stevenson offers Persecution in Persia, The Council of Antioch, The Creed of Jerusalem and The Synod of Ashtishat. Authors of these documents include Athanasius, Cyril of Jerusalem, Marcellinus, Theodoret, Gregory of Nazianzus, Jerome, Augustine, and Bede. Professor Frend has regrouped the documents in their historic settings. For example, Jerome’s writings are placed together as are those writings that recount the controversies in which Augustine and Cyril of Alexandria were involved. Nearly forty documents have been added to this new edition and the notes and bibliography have been updated.

Anyone interested in the early days of Christianity or in the later Roman Empire will find this book attractive to browse in. Every lecturer on the period will be grateful for the opportunity to refer his hearers to this admirable collection.

Times Literary Supplement

J. Stevenson (d.1983) was a Fellow of Downing College, Cambridge.

W. H. C. Frend (1916-2005) was Chair of Ecclesiastical History of Glasgow University, a Fellow of the British Academy, and a Fellow of the Society of Antiquaries of London. He was the author of Martyrdom and Persecution in the Early Church and The Rise of Christianity.

Worship in the Early Church

  • Author: Ralph P. Martin
  • Publisher: Eerdmans
  • Publication Date: 1974
  • Pages: 144

Worship in the Early Church sheds light on how the earliest Christians worshiped God, including several elements into their worship that reflected their Jewish heritage. Prayers and praises, singing, creeds and confessions, preaching, offerings, and sacrament—these are the chief features of early Christian worship examined by Professor Martin. Pastors, ministers, Sunday school teachers and laypersons will benefit from this lucid account of why believers do what they do when they gather together to worship.

Ralph Martin was a Professor of New Testament at Fuller Theological Seminary and is now a Distinguished Scholar in Residence. He holds a Ph.D. from the University of London and is the author of numerous books and articles about the New Testament, including The Worship of God and Reconciliation: A Study of Paul’s Theology. He has served as New Testament Editor for the Word Biblical Commentary Series and has edited the Dictionary of Paul and His Letters.

A Short History of the Early Church

  • Author: Harry R. Boer
  • Publisher: Eerdmans
  • Publication Date: 1976
  • Pages: 198

Boer offers a reliable introduction to the history of the early church, providing background on the world into which the church was born, as he surveys the life of the church from the ministry of Jesus to AD 600. He examines the effects of persecution and heresy on the church and explains the role of several key church leaders. The author elucidates the church’s ongoing struggle to formulate proper doctrines of the Trinity and of Christ. Each chapter is clearly outlined and concludes with several discussion questions, making it an excellent study guide for church groups.

Offers the layman an excellent overview of the course of Christianity in the first few centuries of our era.

Christianity Today

Provides a lucid and concise account of the peoples, places, institutions, events, and ideas that made a difference in the development of the Christian faith from the first through the seventh century.

New Testament Abstracts

An excellent account of the early centuries of the church….All the information the average Christian needs on the persecutions, heresies, and great councils.

Restoration Review

Harry Boer (1913-1999) worked as a missionary in Nigeria for the Christian Reformed Church. He was an editor and founder of the Reformed Journal, and served as principal of The Theological College of Northern Nigeria at Bukuru from 1957 to 1971. He is the author of The Four Gospels and Acts and An Ember Still Glowing.

The Religious Context of Early Christianity: A Guide to Graeco-Roman Religions

  • Author: Hans-Josef Klauck
  • Publisher: Fortress Press
  • Publication Date: 2003
  • Pages: 540

Klauck has written a college-level reference to the religious practices that were common and widespread at the inception of Christianity. He examines antiquarian sacrificial cults; popular belief systems of the day—astrology, magic and soothsaying; the imperial cult worship of rulers and emperors; and Gnostic transformation. The Religious Context of Early Christianity is a scholarly researched and meticulously presented reference work, which is a welcome addition to Christian studies in that it provides contextual information regarding Christianity’s place in the Graeco-Roman empire.

Klauck’s approach is to select the material most important for the students of early Christianity….One can say without hesitation that the author has succeeded admirably in his attempt at compressing vast fields of complicated materials into a survey that is both manageable and informative. His key to success was concentration on matters of fundamental importance and prudent selection of primary texts, coupled with interpretation and bibliographies reflecting the current state of research….Klauck’s work represents a major achievement.

—Hans Dieter Betz, Journal of Biblical Literature

Hans-Josef Klauck is Professor of New Testament and Early Christian Literature at the Divinity School of the University of Chicago. He has worked extensively on New Testament topics, such as the parables of Jesus, Paul’s Corinthian correspondence, and the Johannine letters, specializing in the religious and social history of the Greaco-Roman world as a necessary background to New Testament studies. He is the author of Ancient Letters and the New Testament.

New Testament Times

  • Author: Merrill C. Tenney
  • Publisher: Eerdmans
  • Publication Date: 1965
  • Pages: 408

Tenney provides a concise reconstruction of the cultural milieu in which Christianity arose and developed from the time of the Maccabean Revolt to AD 138. He begins with an explanation of the relevance of the historical, political, social, and economic background of the first century which helps furnish a proper understanding of the New Testament. Recognizing the embryonic church rose out of three cultural tensions—Judaism, Roman imperialism, and Hellenism—Tenney traces its development under several Roman emperors: Christ’s birth under the age of Augustus, Christ’s ministry under the reign of Tiberius, church persecution under Nero and Domitian, and the new era of Christianity under Trajan and Hadrian. New Testament Times demonstrates how the biblical message was able to speak clearly and meaningfully within the historical framework in which it was set.

Based on wide research and careful critical judgment, this may well be Dr. Tenney’s best book. It puts the student in possession of an immense amount of historical material relevant to the understanding of the New Testament.

—Everett F. Harrison

Merrill Tenney (1904-1985) was for many years Dean of the Graduate School and Professor of Bible and Theology at Wheaton College. Among his many books are Galatians: The Charter of Christian Liberty and Interpreting Revelation.

Meet Paul: An Encounter with the Apostle

  • Author: Donald Coggan
  • Publisher: SPCK
  • Publication Date: 1998
  • Pages: 124

Coggan invites us to meet the man who has significantly influenced the development of Christianity over the last two millennia. This introduction, however, is not to the grim and pedantic figure of popular stereotype, but to a complex person, passionate, affectionate, and very human. The author reveals the crucial significance of the apostle’s favorite phrase—“in Christ”—and illuminates the many facets of his personality and teaching.

This work makes Paul alive, in Christ, and supremely relevant for both the world and the Church of today.

—David Hope, from the Foreword

Donald Coggan (1909-2000) was Archbishop of York from 1961 to 1974 and of Canterbury from 1974 to 1980. He was educated at Merchant Taylor’s School and St. John’s College. He lectured in Semitic languages at the University of Manchester; was professor of New Testament at Wycliffe College in Toronto; and principal of London College of Divinity. He founded the Lord Coggan Memorial Fund which helped to supply Russian children with copies of the Bible. He is the author of The Voice from the Cross and The Servant-Son: Jesus Then and Now.

Product Details

  • Title: Early Church History Collection (7 vols.)
  • Volumes: 7
  • Pages: 2,275