The River of God
A New History of Christian OriginsBook - 2001
A revealing new perspective on the origins of Christianity argues that true Christianity is pluralistic and receptive to diverse beliefs, presents a new understanding of the early churches, and communicates a critical message regarding the true nature of Christian faith in today's society. Reprint.
Where did Christianity come from?
Acclaimed author Gregory Riley embarks on a remarkable journey in this readable and persuasive account of the origins of Christianity. Riley demonstrates that early Christians held widely differing beliefs about God, Jesus, the Devil, and the human soul, and follows these beliefs back to their sources in Greek science and philosophy and the religions of the ancient Middle East. An expert on the context in which Christianity arose, Riley maps out a new understanding of the forging of Christianity, and conveys a vital message for today about the true nature of Christian faith as inherently diverse.
Blackwell North Amer
In this work, historian Gregory Riley traces the origins of Christianity beyond its familiar sources in Judaism and in the Hebrew Bible. Journeying off the beaten path, Riley reveals other, lesser-known sources - elements of Greek philosophy and science, Zoroastrianism, and the religions of ancient Mesopotamia and Egypt. "From the very beginning," writes Riley, "there were several varieties of Christians." The differences were greater, perhaps, than those seen in the Christianity of today. Dozens of sects arose in different cities of the first-century Greco-Roman world, all claiming to be the religion of the risen Christ. Ultimately, these early, doctrinally disparate Christianities led to the present-day diversity of the Church.
Argues that true Christianity is pluralistic and receptive to diverse beliefs, presents a new understanding of the early churches, and communicates a critical message regarding the true nature of Christian faith in today's society.