History of the Christian Church - eBook
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|Format: DRM Protected ePub|
Publication Date: 2014
Since publication of the first edition in 1918, A History of the Christian Church by Williston Walker has enjoyed outstanding success and recognition as a classic in the field. Written by an eminent theologian, it combines in its narrative a rare blend of clarity, unity, and balance. In light of significant advances in scholarship in recent years, extensive revisions have been made to this fourth edition. Three scholars from Union Theological Seminary in New York have incorporated new historical discoveries and provided fresh interpretations of various periods in church history from the first century to the twentieth. The result is a thoroughly updated history which preserves the tenor and structure of Walker's original, unparalleled text.
Williston Walker was born in Portland, Maine, July 1, 1860, the son of a distinguished Congregational minister. He received his A. B. degree from Amherst College in 1883, was graduated from Hartford Theological Seminary in 1886 and received his Ph.D. degree from the University of Leipzig in 1888. He succeeded Woodrow Wilson as associate professor of history at Bryn Mawr College. He later taught church history at Hartford Theological Seminary. In 1901 Yale University called him to succeed George Park Fisher as Titus Street Professor of Ecclesiastical History, a position which he held until his death in 1922. The Reformation, Ten New England Leaders, Great Men of the Christian Church, and A History of the Christian Church are among his distinguished works.
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orthodoxia5 Stars Out Of 5The best survey of the History and Theology of the Early Church in printJanuary 21, 2018orthodoxiaQuality: 4Value: 5Meets Expectations: 5This is a text that has evolved with 20th century scholarship. Originally written in the early 20th century, it was revised by other experts in their respective time periods until its most recent edition. I only needed this text for Church History up until the seventh ecumenical council - roughly the first 250 pages. While I would take the texts sections on the Gospels with a grain of salt, as they are influenced by, in my opinion, bad 19th century textual criticism, the book is worth its price for its coverage of Early Church History from the Apostolic Fathers through the Seventh Ecumenical Council. Having read a good bit of Church History from different texts for pleasure and for my undergraduate and MDiv studies, Protestant, Catholic and Orthodox, you won't find, in my opinion, a better, concise, more straight forward, survey of that period of Church History anywhere else. The author does a great job presenting the history, for the most part, without passing judgment on it from this or that point of view. There are a few exceptions, but even this is a rare feat of scholarship as Church History textbooks these days generally clearly slant one way or another. I found this very reliable and concise in the best way. It doesn't get bogged down in details and does a great job of covering history that a great many Church Histories simply won't bother to cover because the author isn't interested in it. As I mentioned, I have not been able to read the rest of the text, but I would buy it again just for its coverage of the first 700 years of Church History. Regarding the 2 star reviewer, I understand the concern in the coverage of the New Testament writings and their meaning and presentation of Jesus. That part of the text is deeply problematic especially since NT studies today have put most of the cynicism towards the integrity of the Gospels and their presentation of Jesus to rest. See Richard Bauckham, Richard Hays, N. T. Wright, etc. But the coverage of the history and doctrinal struggles of the Church from the beginning of the second century to the seventh century is excellent.
Bill2 Stars Out Of 5Liberal view of church historyJune 20, 2017BillQuality: 3Value: 2Meets Expectations: 2I was disappointed with this book because I did not realize at the time that I bought it that it has a very liberal bent throughout. The forth edition has been revised extensively be folks at the Union Theological seminary, which Wikipedia identifies as the bastion of liberal Christian scholarship. It definitely shows in this work. For example it says that the new testament as we have it evolved over the first few centuries and was influenced by events and philosophies during that time. It also says that Jesus never clearly identified himself as the messiah.
On the plus side, it is well written and covers an amazingly long period of time in a relatively short book. It covers several areas that I was interested in like the rise of the papacy and the fall of orthodoxy.
So if you are of the liberal bent, even to the Unitarian extreme, this book may be for you. It is not for me.
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