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Christianity notes - Christianity 2 billion Christians in...

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2 billion Christians in the world Christian communities in every part of the world Most documented religion Form the majority in a variety of nation states History Jesus of Nazareth Christianity focuses on Jesus -- the Messiah A great deal is known about what people believed about him -- not much is known about Jesus Facts concerning Jesus A devout Jew Grew up in Nazareth, Palestine Born in a large family Lead John the Baptists movement after he died -- by Roman authorities John the Baptist was a Desert Prophet Taught a stern, ethical religion -- that the Messiah was coming When jesus began to teach John’s religion -- he attracted the poor and the disenfranchised Very educated Able to connect with people -- used parables, stories, etc. to make stories accessible to everybody Jesus of Nazareth and the Messianic Age Jesus was of the Messianic age -- the age when the Jews longed for the return to their own ancestral kingdom for religious and political independence through the aid of a Messiah A figure who was going to lead the community out of subjections Born in the house of David During this period, expectations for such a Messiah became very powerful Various groups preached that there was an urgent need to purify oneself -- to prepare for the coming of the Messiah; for Judgement Day Jesus believed that Judgment Day was going to happen in his lifetime -- preached in such a way Jesus had an apocalyptic vision -- typical of Jews of this time His teachings became the ideals of Christianity -- derived from the Hebrew Bible There is no reason to think that Jesus had any idea of evolving a new religion Interested in allowing Jews to engage in pious ways -- reflect a genuine spirit of religion Jesus’ teachings were an attempt to re-inspire Judaism How does Christianity differ from Judaism? Christianity is a missionary religion -- Judaism is an ethnic religion Christianity emphasizes certain things that Judaism does not Jesus endorsed the religious and ethical presets of the Hebrew bible Christianity
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Jesus interpreted the Jewish religion with a central focus on the ethical aspects Less focus on the literal interpretation of the bible The larger jewish community did not see Jewish as the Messiah This was not what the Jewish expected as the Messiah -- he was the Messiah to the Christians For the Jewish people to consider Jesus as the Messiah he had to be both a political and religious leader Jesus was a religious leader, but he was not a political leader -- he did liberate the Jews from Roman power The Community After the Death of Jesus Once the leader is gone -- the charismatic figure who can mass this following How can the community fill that vacuum -- ensure continuity Christianity continued as a sect Christians did not fit in with the larger community They believed that the Messiah already came From Saul to Paul
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