My first two series of lectures that I gave at “Weekend in the Word” on Church History are now available to download for free. I am planning to do the third and final series on church history this April 3-5, 2015 and it will cover the years of 1800 to the present. The links for part one (30AD -1500 AD) and part two (1500 AD-1800 AD) are available below at the end of each overview. So listen to them all or just the sessions that look interesting to you!
Please note: m4a files are designed for quicktime or iTunes, but later versions of Windows Media Players should also be able to play them. You will have to download the files to a computer before you can listen to them and add them to itunes before you can play them on your mobile device. Each session is about an hour long and the files are between 80 and 140 mb each so make sure you are on wifi.
Overview of Church History Part 1: AD 30-1500
There seems to be an epidemic of historical amnesia in today’s church. To some, it’s as if true Christianity disappeared for 1900 years and suddenly resurfaced with their modern denomination. This ignorance of history is dangerous. An old Russian proverb states, “Dwell on the past and you will lose an eye; forget the past and you will lose both eyes.” For many, history is nothing more than by-gone eras, dusty facts, and long-since-departed souls. However, history is not only a fascinating study of our ancestors – it is also a treasure chest full of wisdom, which Jesus and the apostles repeatedly drew from to teach valuable lessons. Because Christ entered His-story, all history has been infused with purpose. It is the profound story being written by the greatest Author of all time. God sits as Lord of the Universe. He laughs at empires and dynasties, but loves to change the world through the weak and simple. A trip through the colorful centuries of the Church reveals a God who is holy and awesome, His purposes that are beyond comprehension, and His reality that shatters man’s small-minded notions of Him.
When you study history, you will glimpse that plan, buried and concealed by our foolish choices, but there for those with open eyes. History is moving toward a thrilling conclusion in which every enemy of God will be soundly defeated. In the meantime, we would be wise to glean from the past and learn from the mistakes and victories of godly men and women who walked this path before us. Come on this life-changing journey to the first century, and follow the halting progress that the church, with all it warts and wildness, has made through the centuries.
Last Days, Tumultuous times. Persecution from the Jews. Persecution from Nero. Justin Martyr and the Apologists. What was early Christianity like? Why did the Gospel spread so rapidly? Ignatius, Polycarp, and Perpetua.
Gnostism and Marcion. Montanists and Celsus. Creed, Canon, and Apostolic sucession. Persecution of Diocletian. Impact Constantine had on official theology, great apostasy, monasticism, and worship in ways that are still felt today.
Donatism. Great apostasy in N. Africa. Council of Nicea. Emperor succession after Constantine and pagan Julian. Cappodocian Fathers, Basil, Gregory, and Gregory and the Final Victory. Augustine, Donatists, and Pelagius. The fall of Rome the Arian Goths.
Chalecedon in the East. Justinian I and Theodora I. East Vs West. The barbaric Nations. Leo and the Rise of the popes. Benedict and western Monastiscm. Gregory the Great . Conversion of the barabaric tribes. Columba and Scotland/Britain. Clovis and the Merovingian line.
Muslim Expansion. Carolingians and Charlemagne.Frankish times. Russia and the Vikings.Papal decay. Rapid succession of popes in 900s. Feudalism and Medevial times. Cluny and the reform of the church. Papal Reform. Simony, celibacy, Lay investiture, and Obedience to Pope. The Great Schism
Crusades and the Changing times. The Scolastic Universities. Anselm, Peter Abelard, and Thomas Aquinas. The high point of papal power, Innocent III. Excommunication and the interdict. The Mendicant Friars. Failures of the golden age. Heresies and the Inquisition. The Rise of Nationalism and wealth of the middle class.
The High point and Boniface. The Collapse. Popes in Avignon. Black Plague and Flagellants. The Hundred years war. Joan of Arc, Thomas a Kempis, and Catherine of Sienna. The Papal Schism. John Wycliffe and John Huss
Download Talks in m4a format Here
Overview of Church History Part 2 (1500AD-1800AD)
At the end of the 15th century, the Church was in shambles, superstition and ignorance was rampant, the clergy were better known for their immorality than their knowledge of the Bible. Several attempts at reform had failed miserably. But just when things looked most bleak, lightning struck. In a few short decades, the landscape of Christianity changed forever. In this Weekend in the Word, we will look at the Holy Spirit’s moving in the Church from 1500 AD to 1800 AD. This period is filled with men and women who make tremendous sacrifices to bring the light of God’s Word to a crumbling society and advance Christ’s Kingdom in earth-trembling ways. Their example inspires us to continue their mission to shine the glory of God into every corner of our lives.
Session 1:“The Life and Times of Martin Luther”
Session 2: “John Calvin and the Reformation in Europe”
Session 3: “The English Bible and the Reformation in England”
Session 4: “The Age of Exploration and Exploitation”
Session 5: “Puritans and the Kingdom of God on Earth”
Session 6: “Revivalists: Whitefield and the Wesleys”
Session 7: “Jonathan Edwards and the Great Awakening”
Download Talks in m4a format Here