Initial request: October 5, 2005
I'm writing a paper on the rise of the early Christian Church in Rome from the time of Christ until the fall of Rome for one of my classes. My paper is contrasting various philosophies that went against Christianity during that time, as well as the development of official written doctrines by the Christian Church. I need sources that give concise, general overviews of various religious and philosophical groups and general history of the rise of the Christian Church. Does anyone know of a source like that?
My reply: October 5, 2005
Is this for high school level or collegiate?
How much time to you have to do research and how much time do you want to take?
You might want to look at four areas for your paper, if you have the room to do it.
I don't know if this is more than you want or not...
- the philosophical and religious frameworks of the Hellenistic and Judaic cultures
- Monism / Dualism / Pluralism
- Henotheism (Monarchial Polytheism)
- the religious environment of the Roman world
- Paganism (Greco-Roman)
- Paganism (Egyptian)
- Paganism (Mesopotamian)
- Jewish movements, sects, and theologies
- Christian movements, sects, and theologies
- Cainites (Caianites)
- Gnosticism (many kinds--some in this list)
- Pelagianism (also Semipelagianism)
Obviously, it's a topic for a series of books, not just for a paper.
Kevin Winter's reply: October 2005
I would suggest Jaroslav Pelikan's The Emergence of the Catholic Tradition. It deals much more with the integration of "various philosophies" into "Christianity during that time," but it might give some good perspective for your paper.