Since its publication in 2000, The Early Christian World has come to be regarded by scholars, students and the general reader as one of the most informative and accessible works in English on the origins, development, character and major figures of early Christianity. In this new edition, the strengths of the first edition are retained. These include the book’s attractive architecture that initially takes a reader through the context and historical development of early Christianity; the essays in critical areas such as community formation, everyday experience, the intellectual and artistic heritage, and external and internal challenges; and the profiles on the most influential early Christian figures. The book also preserves its strong stress on the social reality of early Christianity and continues its distinctive use of hundreds of illustrations and maps to bring that world to life. Yet the years that have passed since the first edition was published have seen great advances made in our understanding of early Christianity in its world. This new edition fully reflects these developments and provides the reader with authoritative, lively and up-to-date access to the early Christian world. A quarter of the text is entirely new and the remaining essays have all been carefully revised and updated by their authors. Some of the new material relates to Christian culture (including book culture, canonical and non-canonical scriptures, saints and hagiography, and translation across cultures). But there are also new essays on: Jewish and Christian interaction in the early centuries; ritual; the New Testament in Roman Britain; Manichaeism; Pachomius the Great and Gregory of Nyssa. This new edition will serve its readers for many years to come.

part I|93 pages

The context

chapter 1|24 pages

The Mediterranean Context of Early Christianity

ByPhilip F. Esler

chapter 2|21 pages

Armies, Emperors and Bureaucrats

ByJill Harries

chapter 3|25 pages

Graeco-Roman Philosophy and Religion

ByLuther H. Martin

chapter 4|21 pages

Jewish Tradition and Culture

ByJames K. Aitken

part II|170 pages

Christian origins and development

chapter 5|24 pages

The Galilean World of Jesus

In memoriam Seán Freyne 1
ByDouglas E. Oakman

chapter 6|21 pages

Early Jewish Christianity

ByEdwin K. Broadhead

chapter 7|24 pages

From The Hellenists to Marcion

Early gentile Christianity
ByTodd Klutz

chapter 8|28 pages

The Jesus Tradition

The gospel writers’ strategies of persuasion
ByRichard L. Rohrbaugh

chapter 9|23 pages

The Second and Third Centuries

ByJeffrey S. Siker

chapter 10|24 pages

From Constantine To Theodosius (And Beyond)

ByBill Leadbetter

chapter 11|21 pages

Jewish and Christian Interaction from The First to The Fifth Centuries

ByAnders Runesson

part III|62 pages

Community formation and maintenance

chapter 12|17 pages

Mission and Expansion

ByThomas M. Finn

chapter 13|11 pages

The Development of Office In The Early Church

ByMark Edwards

chapter 14|12 pages

Christian Regional Diversity

ByDavid G. K. Taylor

chapter 15|20 pages


ByColumba Stewart Osb

part IV|138 pages

Everyday Christian experience

chapter 16|26 pages

Reading The New Testament In Roman Britain

ByRichard Cleaves

chapter 17|17 pages

Sex and Sexual Renunciation I

ByTeresa M. Shaw

chapter 18|13 pages

Sex and Sexual Renunciation II

Developments in research since 2000 1
ByElizabeth A. Castelli

chapter 19|21 pages

Women, Children and House Churches

ByMona Tokarek LaFosse

chapter 20|21 pages

Worship, Practice, and Belief

ByMaxwell E. Johnson

chapter 21|15 pages

Ritual and The Rise of The Early Christian Movement

ByRisto Uro

chapter 22|23 pages

Communication and Travel

ByBlake Leyerle

part V|62 pages

Christian culture

chapter 23|16 pages

Christian Realia

Papyrological and epigraphical material
ByGiovanni Bazzana

chapter 24|18 pages

Scriptures In Early Christianity

ByOuti Lehtipuu, Hanne von Weissenberg

chapter 25|14 pages

Saints and Hagiography

ByMark Humphries

chapter 26|12 pages

Translation and Communication Across Cultures

ByMalcolm Choat

part VI|144 pages

The intellectual heritage

chapter 27|18 pages

The Apostolic Fathers

ByCarolyn Osiek

chapter 28|18 pages

The Apologists

ByAnders-Christian Jacobsen

chapter 29|22 pages

Early Theologians

ByGerald Bray

chapter 30|19 pages

Later Theologians of The Greek East

ByAndrew Louth

chapter 31|25 pages

Later Theologians of The West

ByIvor J. Davidson

chapter 32|16 pages

Creeds, Councils and Doctrinal Development

ByPiotr Ashwin-Siejkowski

chapter 33|24 pages

Biblical Interpretation

ByOskar Skarsaune

part VII|109 pages

The artistic heritage

chapter 34|44 pages

Early Christian Architecture

The first five centuries
ByL. Michael White

chapter 35|28 pages


ByRobin M. Jensen

chapter 36|17 pages


ByJohn Arthur Smith

chapter 37|18 pages

Imaginative Literature

ByRichard Bauckham

part VIII|54 pages

External challenges

chapter 38|13 pages

Political Oppression and Martyrdom

ByCandida R. Moss

chapter 39|21 pages

Graeco-Roman Philosophical Opposition

ByMichael Bland Simmons

chapter 40|18 pages

Popular Graeco-Roman Responses To Christianity

ByCraig de Vos

part IX|105 pages

Internal challenges

chapter 41|13 pages

Internal Renewal and Dissent in the Early Christian World

BySheila E. McGinn

chapter 42|17 pages


ByAlastair H. B. Logan

chapter 43|18 pages


ByChristine Trevett

chapter 44|20 pages


ByJakob Engberg

chapter 45|16 pages


ByDavid Rankin

chapter 46|19 pages


ByJason David BeDuhn

part X|247 pages


chapter 47|16 pages


ByThomas P. Scheck

chapter 48|17 pages


ByGeoffrey D. Dunn

chapter 49|20 pages

Perpetua and Felicitas

ByShira L. Lander, Ross S. Kraemer

chapter 50|14 pages


ByBill Leadbetter

chapter 51|11 pages

Anthony The Great

ByColumba Stewart Osb

chapter 52|15 pages

Pachomius The Great

ByJames E. Goehring

chapter 53|18 pages


ByDavid M. Gwynn

chapter 54|18 pages

John Chrysostom

ByWendy Mayer, Pauline Allen

chapter 55|15 pages

Gregory of Nyssa

ByElena Ene D-Vasilescu

chapter 56|15 pages


ByDennis Brown

chapter 57|24 pages


ByIvor J. Davidson

chapter 58|19 pages


ByCarol Harrison

chapter 59|24 pages

Ephrem The Syrian

ByKathleen E. McVey

chapter 60|19 pages

Julian The Apostate

ByMichael Bland Simmons