Christianity is an Abrahamic religion, which shares certain similarities with Judaism and Islam in some of its fundamentals, mainly in the belief in a single God (but with different personal names, depending on each religion), the belief in a single Messiah (although he differs as to his identity), and in the origins of its sacred texts.
It is undeniable that the influence of Jesus of Nazareth forever changed the history of mankind. Christian believers dedicate their lives and their faith to their messiah and their God, this is manifested through the model of peaceful living and helping others, which is based on the teaching words of Jesus and in turn, on the commandments written by God.
Christianity, like all institutionalized religions, functions not only as a spiritual doctrine but also as a model of life and as a social institution, mainly influencing the values of modern Western societies. All this makes it a pillar religion of most Western societies that are attached to its doctrine.
At present, Christianity is considered to be the religion with the most believers in the world, having approximately (not so surprisingly) 2.4 billion followers around the globe and it is curious to wonder who is the founder of Christianity? Was it Jesus, one of his disciples, or perhaps a Roman emperor? If you want to find out the answer, keep reading this article:
To know and understand the birth of the Christian religion, we must understand a little of the context of what happened at the time when Christ lived among men.
Even if you already know when was Jesus Christ really born? We will review this historical period again (a little more than 2050 years ago). The territories of Palestine were dominated by the Roman Empire. From there arose the Hellenistic influence inherited by the Holy Roman Empire. The appearance of both Jesus and his teachings represented a strong threat, not only to Roman beliefs but also to their political power, and the consequence of this path of Jesus’ teachings was his crucifixion.
Despite the death of the Messiah, Christianity was gaining more and more followers, thus generating the growth of this doctrine throughout the Roman Empire, which led to the prohibition of Christianity and the persecution of Christian believers, who were forced to practice their religion under the inclement veil of secrecy.
It would not be until 313 AD with the Edict of Milan, during the mandate of Emperor Constantine I, that the ban on Christian practice would be lifted, shortly after this same emperor officially declared himself a confessed Christian.
Christianity is a very diverse religion, and over the years different branches have appeared. This happened mainly because of the different interpretations made by different societies to the word of Jesus (through the interpretation and translation of the sacred text of the bible), as a form of cultural adaptation or in more extreme cases demonstrated throughout history: by political conflicts or by simple imposition due to intolerance.
The history of Christianity throughout the more than two thousand years of its creation is incredibly extensive, full of curiosities, and of course of faith, good teachings, and love for God and neighbor.
According to historians and expert theologians, early Christianity can be interpreted from two perspectives: The first perspective is the historical one. Here we can see the influences of both Hellenistic Judaism and Jewish messianism (influenced by Abraham, hence the origin of the Abrahamic religions) as justification for the way of acting of Jesus, who would not only have a direct influence of God on his actions but also of the Jewish traditions in force during his stage of life.
The other perspective is that of Jesus as the Christ of faith. This is where the accounts of Jesus are compiled, mainly after the crucifixion, and after his appearance as the resurrected Christ. The figure of Jesus as a historical personage and religious figure is a long topic of debate among believers and historians, for understanding the actions of Jesus as a man and as the Messiah sent by God, who was able to perform incredible miracles, is a challenge.
Who are the founders and leaders of Christianity?
The founder of the doctrine on which Christianity is based was Jesus of Nazareth himself, who was also known as the Christ and hence, the origin of the name that would be used for centuries after the religion that was built on the foundations of his teachings. His ideas and beliefs served as an example to his followers, who later became known as Christians.
A fundamental part of this religious movement was the 12 apostles, who are also considered the founders of this religion. They were the main apprentices of Jesus, accompanying him on his many journeys, thus being direct witnesses of his work, his miracles, and his teachings to later transmit them through evangelistic missions.
After the resurrection and subsequent ascent to heaven of the Messiah Jesus of Nazareth, the process of massification of the transmission of his teachings began. It would remain as the main task for the members of his church, to continue spreading the words of the one sent by God himself. This task was carried out at first by the apostles, who are considered to be the founders of Christianity but it is also known that any believer in Christianity could also spread the word and was encouraged to be courageous and share the word of God.
The way in which the apostles spread the word in both the Middle East and Europe was because each of them decided to take a different course. This event is known as the dispersion of the apostles. Among them, Peter, who preached the gospel in Rome for 14 years (hence the origin of the Vatican as the current capital of Christianity, a country located within Rome); James, the younger, in Egypt and Palestine; Matthew in Ethiopia, Bartholomew in certain parts of Asia; James, the elder in Judea and Jerusalem, and finally, Matthias in Judea.
Who founded Christianity in the 1st century?
There was a period known as early Christianity or primitive Christianity, which occurred in the first century AD. Here the different communities of believers developed different Christian traditions and commemorations. This gave rise to different heads of Christianity, four of which stand out: the Four patriarchs churches were Alexandria, Rome, Jerusalem, Antioch.
With the dispersion of the apostles, the so-called apostolic era began and from then on, the teaching of Christianity was different because each apostle taught in his way. This gave rise to the different currents of primitive Christianity mentioned above.
In reality, there is no single founder of Christianity from the first century onwards. Rather, this was the era of massification and diversification of the Christian religion. Which over the years would give rise to new visions and interpretations of Christianity such as Lutheranism, Calvinist Protestantism, and Evangelicalism, among many others.
How long was the Bible written after Jesus died?
Jesus, upon learning of his imminent death at the hands of the Romans, delegated one last task to his twelve apostles. According to the messiah of Christianity, this task was the most important of all: to bring the Christian faith and the word of God to all human beings. This arduous task would give new meaning to the lives of the twelve apprentices of Christ, who would take on this enormous challenge for the rest of their lives.
However, the celebration of masses and words were the only means of transmitting this information. So it was decided to also document the important message that Jesus gave to his main witnesses, the twelve apostles. In this way, the first texts were written by the apostles appeared, which at first were individual books but which as a whole were added to the New Testament of the Bible.
The first to write his book on the teachings was the apostle Mark, who forty years after the death of Jesus wrote the first gospel. This was an important step because it changed the oral tradition as a way of teaching the Christian faith to a new modality: the sharing of the experiences of Jesus and his people through written stories.
Did King James change the Bible?
King James did not have a direct role in the rewriting of the 1601 Authorized Version of the Bible but had entire teams of scholars working for him, largely independently.
The “KJV” (“King James Version”) was not the first English translation of the Bible and by the time King James became involved, there were several English translations, all competing with each other.
The real purpose of the KJV was not to be the first English translation, which it was not, but to present a Bible that was a compromise between the more radical Calvinist (“Low Church”) and the more traditionalist (“High Church”) views.
The whole project had a strong political motivation: King James, like Elizabeth I before him, wanted to have a Church that everyone in England felt comfortable with, from ex-Catholics to Lutherans to Calvinists. The KJV was thus an attempt at compromise, at trying to give a little bit of everything to everyone.
King James agreed with the Protestant project of trying to make the liturgy something to be said aloud in every church in the country. Therefore, the emphasis was on creating a Bible that sounded magnificent when read aloud, in English, since in England, people generally did not know Latin, Hebrew, or Greek, unless they were members of or educated in the church. Protestantism emphasized that people could read the Bible for themselves, in their language so as not to depend on priests.
The scholars who worked for King James were magnificently successful and used Tyndale’s translation as a base, and then added parts of some of the best parts of the other translations. The translators knew Greek and Hebrew, and so they were able to try to improve the accuracy and faithfulness of the earlier translations. The result ended up being one of the most successful versions of the Bible in English, which is still in use today.
Christianity is an Abrahamic religion, which shares certain similarities with Judaism and Islam in some of its fundamentals but the origin of Christianity stems from the greatest of its differences: the belief that Jesus of Nazareth is the Messiah and son of God.
During the time in which Jesus lived, the territories of Palestine were dominated by the Roman Empire. From there arises the Hellenistic influence inherited by the Holy Roman Empire. The appearance of both Jesus and his teachings represented a strong threat, not only to Roman beliefs but also to their political power, and ended with his crucifixion.
After the death of the Messiah, Christianity gained more and more followers throughout the Roman Empire. This led to the prohibition of the practice of Christianity and the persecution of Christian believers, who went underground.
In 313 AD, Emperor Constantine I lifted the ban with the Edict of Milan.
The founder of the doctrine on which Christianity is based was Jesus of Nazareth himself, and his ideals and beliefs served as an example to his followers, who later became known as Christians.
The 12 apostles, who are also considered the founders of this religion, spread the word of Jesus in different regions during the dispersion of the apostles. Jesus entrusted them with the mission of bringing the Christian faith and the word of God to all human beings and, subsequently, each disciple wrote his gospel to share the teachings of Jesus with the world.
Along with the review of the foundations of the Christian religion, some questions are answered and other questions arise as a filigree such as Does God Listen To Our Prayers? or Why We raise hands in worship Prays? for these answers we recommend that you take a moment of spiritual meditation and you can also take a look at some articles that develop these themes to help guide you in your search.