The chief apostles of Christ died in the mid-60s ofthe first century--at least those of whom we have solid knowledge: Peter, Paul, and James "the brother of the Lord." This means that most of the New Testament works were addressed to churches that no longer had living apostolic guides. What made these churches tick? How did they survive? This book is a study of seven very different churches in the New Testament period after the death of the apostles. These churches had quite diverse emphases in their community life, as detectable from the biblical writings addressed to them. Three of the churches are in the heritage of Paul, one in the heritage of Peter, two in the heritage of the Beloved Disciple (Johannine writings), and the last is the church addressed by the First Gospel (Matthew).