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Thursday, November 4, 2010

Answering a question about Church History

This is from the HCR forums.

Originally Posted by dimib116 View Post
Anyone have any good, reliable online resources that I could use to study up on church history?
From a Calvinistic or Reformed Presbyterian protestant perspective: (by Dr. David Calhoun)

Part 1:

Books I have and use:
From a moderate to mild Liberal scholarly protestant book about church history. This one volume covers alot. If you can get passed the mild liberalism of chapter one...or is it chapter 2? I forgot, but if you can get passed the mild liberalism/modernity/cynicism/skepticism of their treatment of the early first century, then you are good to go for most of the book is actually pretty good:
A History of the Christian Church by Willston Walker

A really good Anglican protestant work that covers the first five centuries:
Early Christian Doctrines by J.N.D. Kelly

A really good Anglican protestant work....with a very strong Augustinian bias...that covers the first six centuries:
A Dictionary of Early Christian Biography by Henry Wace & William C. Piercy

This one is from a former JW, and former Continual Anglican turned Mennonite. I use to follow him from 1997/1998 to about 2002:
A Dictionary of Early Christian Beliefs by David W Bercot

The Christian Tradition Series is good. I could be wrong, but I think it was written in his protestant Lutheran years:
The Christian Tradition: A History of the Development of Doctrine, Vol. 1: The Emergence of the Catholic Tradition (100-600) by Jaroslav Pelikan

I also have his Credo book:
Credo: Historical and Theological Guide to Creeds and Confessions of Faith in the Christian Tradition by Jaroslav Pelikan

I could be wrong, but I think this one was written by a Reformed protestant. He shows that Saint Cyril's theology about the issue was actually the patristic consensus:
Grace and Christology in the Early Church (Oxford Early Christian Studies) by Donald Fairbairn

The Anglican Alister Mcgrath wrote a number of books that are helpful. This one is mostly about the English/American protestant tradition. If you want to know why things are the way they are in America as well as Britain....then read this book! If you want to understand some of the things I say about the connection between modern secularism and protestantism.....then read this book:
Christianity's Dangerous Idea: The Protestant Revolution--A History from the Sixteenth Century to the Twenty-First

Another book that helps one understand why things are the way that they are. If you want to understand why I link modern cynicism with the Cynicism of the Reformation, then read this book. The book is really about hermeneutics and how it changed over the centuries. Basically, what the book says is that our modern way of looking at the natural world owes alot to how Reformed protestants looked at the natural sense of Scripture. If you only believe that Scripture has one sense and one sense only, then Scripture can only have one interpretation and that interpretation is the natural sense interpretation. Something similar happened to the way we looked at the natural world. Before the Reformation, we looked at the natural world as having multiple senses. Either sometime after the Reformation or congruent with it, we started to see it as having one sense and one sense only. And that one interpretation was the philosophical naturalistic one. The book also shows how the consistency in this direction eventually turned against it's former protestant (and Roman Catholic, but his focus is mostly on the protestant history and influence) masters and became the secular animal it is today. It's actually a great read....I loved it!
The Bible, Protestantism, and the Rise of Natural Science by Peter Harrison

He has another book that I want, but it is on my books to get list:
The Fall of Man and the Foundations of Science by Peter Harrison

From a Roman Catholic perspective.....with a Jewish convert twist:
(by Dr. Lawrence Feingold)

Part 1:

Roman Catholic books I have:

Over all this is a pretty good book. I just didn't like the bias against Logos Theology. It has a slight bias in the direction of the Papacy, but that should be expected. But like I said, it's a real detailed resource.
The First Seven Ecumenical Councils (325-787): Their History and Theology (Theology and Life Series 21) by Leo Donald Davis

This was written by a lay Roman Catholic Apologist, and so it has a few flaws, but over all he did a pretty good job with it:
Why Catholic Bibles are Bigger by Gary G. Michuta

A Roman Catholic book I still need(I plan on getting it in the spring with my tax return):
Handbook of Patristic Exegesis: The Bible in Ancient Christianity

From an Orthodox Christian perspective:
(Dr. Jeffrey Macdonald)

Part 1:

This one is from my blog partner. He is working on a short series on youtube:
The Historical Method

History of Christianity 1: The Apostolic Church

History of Christianity 2: Bishops and Apologists

History of Christianity 3: Age of the Martyrs

History of Christianity 4: Trials and Triumphs

History of Christianity 5: A Century of Giants

History of Christianity 6: Schism and the Seeds of Schism

It's gonna be a while for part seven, he is working on another project at the moment.

The Pacifist Option

The Christian East and the Rise of the Papacy by Aristeides Papadakis & John Meyendorff

The Orthodox Church: New Edition by Metropolitan Kallistos Ware

Wade in the River: The Story of the African Christian Faith by Father Paisius Altschul

Books I still need...well, I still need a whole bunch, but one in particular:
Eastern Christianity by Aziz S. Atiya
Synergy My Blog The Brotherhood


Blogs: Eastern Orthodox

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