The Lost History of Christianity
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The Lost History of Christianity : The Thousand-Year Golden Age of the Church in the Middle East, Africa and Asia

3.98 (1,264 ratings by Goodreads)
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Description

This book tells a surprising story. Many think of Christianity as a Western faith, which grew out of its origins in the Middle East towards Rome and into Europe, paving the way for the Enlightenment, science and modernity. However, Philip Jenkins reveals, the largest and most influential churches of Christianity's youth lay to the east of Rome, covered the world from China to North Africa, encountered a full spectrum of acceptance to persecution under Islamic rule and only expired after a thousand-year reign after Constantine. This is the story of these churches of the East and how they became extinct - but not before becoming the dominant expression of Christianity for its first 1,000 years and helping to shape both the Asia and the Christianity we know today.
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Product details

  • Paperback | 322 pages
  • 138 x 216 x 19.05mm | 425g
  • Lion Books
  • Oxford, United Kingdom
  • English
  • New edition
  • New edition
  • B&W maps and diagrams
  • 0745953670
  • 9780745953670
  • 206,400

Review quote

[Jenkins ] depiction of the long Christian history of Asia, Mesopotamia, and the greater Middle East is both a much-needed education and a spiritually fruitful provocation. --Books & Culture Philip Jenkins book is a tour de force in historical retrieval and reconstruction, a work of scholarly restoration that strikes an overdue balance in the story of Christianity. It is studded with insight, with the story presented in a lively and lucid style. --Lamin Sanneh, Professor of World Christianity and Professor of History, Yale University Philip Jenkins s marvelous new book...tells the largely forgotten story of Nisibis, and thousands of sites like it, which stretch from Morocco to Kenya to India to China, and which were, deep into the second millennium, the heart of the church. --The Weekly Standard Jenkins is one of America s top religious scholars. --Forbes In leaner, clearer prose than ever before, Jenkins outlines and analyzes this history, which few present-day Christians have even heard of. This may be the most eye-opening history book of the year. --Booklist In this highly readable and sobering exploration of how religions - including our own - grow, falter and sometimes die, Jenkins adds a unique dimension to present day religious studies in a voice and style that non-specialists can also appreciate. --Harvey Cox, Hollis Professor of Divinity, Harvard University Philip Jenkins always writes well on very interesting topics. This time his topic is more than interesting-it is essential reading for anyone with any interest in the history of Christianity. --Rodney Stark, author of The Rise of Christianity ...an exceptionally fine study of a great swathe of Christian history, hugely important in the Christian story but very little known. This thoughtful, elegant and learned survey will remedy the neglect of a subject which students of religion absolutely need to know about. --Diarmaid MacCulloch, Professor of the History of the Church, University of Oxford and author of The Reformation . . . persuasively and cogently argued . . . marvelously accessible for the lay reader and replete with fascinating details to help personalize the ambitious sweep of global history Jenkins undertakes. This is an important counterweight to previous histories that have focused almost exclusively on Christianity in the West. --Publishers Weekly, starred review Jenkins s well-crafted new volume...is not only a welcome addition to the literature on Christianity as a truly global religion, to which he has already made substantial contributions, but also an invitation to retrieve a forgotten chapter of history that has not inconsiderable relevance to current events. --Religion & Ethics Newsweekly Using his skill to discredit murky thinking and propose new understandings where the old no longer serve a good purpose, Jenkins offers yet another jewel in what is becoming a crown of paradigm-shattering studies. [This book] will amply reward your investment of time and attention. --America The Lost History of Christianity is a fascinating study of the first thousand-plus years of the Church--a Church rooted in the Middle East, Africa, and Asia. We have much to learn from the tale of its reach, its particular way of being Christian, and its eventual decomposition --Beliefnet.com (One of the Best Religious Books of 2008) ."..an exceptionally fine study of a great swathe of Christian history, hugely important in the Christian story but very little known. This thoughtful, elegant and learned survey will remedy the neglect of a subject which students of religion absolutely need to know about."--Diarmaid MacCulloch, Professor of the History of the Church, University of Oxford and author of The Reformation "In this highly readable and sobering exploration of how religions - including our own - grow, falter and sometimes die, Jenkins adds a unique dimension to present day religious studies in a voice and style that non-specialists can also appreciate."--Harvey Cox, Hollis Professor of Divinity, Harvard University "The Lost History of Christianity is a fascinating study of the first thousand-plus years of the Church--a Church rooted in the Middle East, Africa, and Asia. We have much to learn from the tale of its reach, its particular way of being Christian, and its eventual decomposition "--Beliefnet.com (One of the Best Religious Books of 2008) "In leaner, clearer prose than ever before, Jenkins outlines and analyzes this history, which few present-day Christians have even heard of. This may be the most eye-opening history book of the year."--Booklist "Philip Jenkins always writes well on very interesting topics. This time his topic is more than interesting-it is essential reading for anyone with any interest in the history of Christianity."--Rodney Stark, author of The Rise of Christianity ." . . persuasively and cogently argued . . . marvelously accessible for the lay reader and replete with fascinating details to help personalize the ambitious sweep of global history Jenkins undertakes. This is an important counterweight to previous histories that have focused almost exclusively on Christianity in the West."--Publishers Weekly, starred review "[Jenkins'] depiction of the long Christian history of Asia, Mesopotamia, and the greater Middle East is both a much-needed education and a spiritually fruitful provocation."--Books & Culture "Philip Jenkins' book is a tour de force in historical retrieval and reconstruction, a work of scholarly restoration that strikes an overdue balance in the story of Christianity. It is studded with insight, with the story presented in a lively and lucid style."--Lamin Sanneh, Professor of World Christianity and Professor of History, Yale University "Philip Jenkins's marvelous new book...tells the largely forgotten story of Nisibis, and thousands of sites like it, which stretch from Morocco to Kenya to India to China, and which were, deep into the second millennium, the heart of the church."--The Weekly Standard "Jenkins is one of America's top religious scholars."--Forbes "Jenkins's well-crafted new volume...is not only a welcome addition to the literature on Christianity as a truly global religion, to which he has already made substantial contributions, but also an invitation to retrieve a forgotten chapter of history that has not inconsiderable relevance to current events."--Religion & Ethics Newsweekly "Using his skill to discredit murky thinking and propose new understandings where the old no longer serve a good purpose, Jenkins offers yet another jewel in what is becoming a crown of paradigm-shattering studies. [This book] will amply reward your investment of time and attention."--America
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About Philip Jenkins

Philip Jenkins is Edwin Erle Sparks Professor of Humanities at Pennsylvania State University. He was educated at Cambridge and has written 20 books and over a hundred articles and reviews. He has won several book prizes in Christian and secular arenas alike.
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Rating details

1,264 ratings
3.98 out of 5 stars
5 33% (417)
4 39% (497)
3 22% (283)
2 4% (54)
1 1% (13)
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