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Christianity


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Christianity (from the Greek Christos, literally - the anointed one) is one of the three world religions, which arose in the 1st century AD. in Palestine, in the center of which stands the image of the God-man - Jesus Christ, who atoned for the sins of mankind by his martyrdom on the cross and opened the way for the latter to reunite with God. In modern times, this term is used to characterize the three main directions of Christianity: Orthodoxy, Catholicism and Protestantism. Now, according to the UN, there are 1.5 billion Christians in the world, according to UNESCO, 1.3 billion.

Unlike other religions, Christianity was given to man by God. Any Christian will tell you this, because this position is part of his faith, however, people who are somewhat far from Christianity (well, or simply curious scientists), after conducting a comparative analysis of the history of religious teachings, came to the conclusion that Christianity has absorbed various ethical and philosophical ideas other religions, such as Judaism, Mithraism, and the views of the ancient Eastern religions.

Christianity came out of the Jewish environment. One of the confirmations can be the following words of Christ: "Do not think that I came to break the law or the prophets, I did not come to break the law, but to fulfill" (Matthew 5:27) and the very fact that Jesus was born into the Jewish people, which in the framework of Judaism and was waiting for his Messiah. Subsequently, Judaism was rethought by Christianity in the direction of deepening the moral religious aspect, which affirmed the basic principle of love for all that exists.

Jesus Christ is a historical person. This is the opinion of representatives of one of the main schools involved in the study of this issue. Representatives of the other stand on the version that Jesus is a rather mythological person. According to the latter, modern science is devoid of specific historical data about this person. In their eyes, the Gospels are devoid of historical accuracy, since they were written many years after the events that occurred, they repeat other Eastern religions and sin with a large number of contradictions. The actual historical sources of the beginning of the 1st century do not at all reflect in themselves either the preaching activity of Christ, or information about the miracles he performed.
The historical school cites the following facts as evidence of the real existence of Jesus Christ: the reality of the characters referred to in the New Testament, a number of historical sources containing information about Christ, the most famous of which is considered to be the "Antiquities" of Josephus.
It should be noted that in recent years the majority of religious scholars, as well as Christians themselves, take the position that Jesus Christ really existed.

In Christianity, there are 10 basic commandments, in accordance with which a person should live. Written on stone tablets, they were given by God to Moses on Mount Sinai.
1. I am the Lord, your God ... May you have no other gods before Me.
2. Don't make yourself an idol.
3. Do not take the name of the Lord your God in vain.
4. Devote the seventh day to the Lord your God.
5. Honor your father and your mother.
6. Don't kill.
7. Don't commit adultery.
8. Don't steal.
9. Do not bear false testimony against your neighbor.
10. Do not desire anything that your neighbor has.

The Sermon on the Mount is of great importance for Christian understanding and leadership in life. The Sermon on the Mount is considered to be the core of the teaching of Jesus Christ. In it, God the Son gave the people the so-called Beatitudes ("Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the Kingdom of Heaven", "Blessed are those who mourn, for they will be comforted", "Blessed are the meek, for they will inherit the earth" (further - Matthew 5: 3 -16) and revealed the understanding of the 10 commandments. So the commandment "Do not kill, whoever kills, is subject to judgment" turns into "everyone who is angry with his brother in vain, is subject to judgment" (Matthew 5: 17-37), "Do not commit adultery" - c "... everyone who looks at a woman with lust has already committed adultery with her in his heart ..." (Matthew 5: 17-37). It was in the Sermon on the Mount that the following thoughts sounded: "Love your enemies, bless those who curse you, do good to those who hate you and pray for those who curse you "(Matthew 5: 38-48; 6: 1-8)," Do not judge, lest you be judged ... "(Matthew 7: 1-14)," Ask, and it will be given to you ; seek, and you will find; knock, and it will be opened to you; for everyone who asks receives "(Matthew 7: 1-14)." So in everything, as you want people to do to you, so do you with them; for in this is the law and the prophets "(Matthew 7: 1-14).

The Bible is the holy book of Christians. It consists of two parts: the Old Testament and the New Testament. The latter, in turn, consists of four Gospels: Matthew, John, Mark and Luke, "Acts of the Apostles" and "Revelation of John the Theologian" (known as the Apocalypse).

The main provisions of the Christian doctrine are 12 dogmas and 7 sacraments. They were adopted at the first and second ecumenical councils in 325 and 381. 12 dogmas of Christianity are usually called the Creed. It reflects what the Christian believes in: in one God the Father, in one God the Son, that God the Son came down from heaven for our salvation, that God the Son was incarnate on earth from the Holy Spirit and Mary the Virgin, that God the Son was crucified for us, resurrected on the third day and ascended into heaven to God the Father, at the second coming of God the Son for judgment on the living and the dead, into the Holy Spirit, into the one Holy Catholic Apostolic Church, in baptism and finally in resurrection and eternal life to come.
The seven Christian sacraments are currently recognized by both the Orthodox and Catholic churches. These sacraments include: baptism (acceptance of a person into the bosom of the church), chrismation, communion (drawing closer to God), repentance (or confession), marriage, priesthood, and blessing of oil (to get rid of the disease).

The symbol of the Christian faith is the cross. The cross in Christianity was adopted in memory of the martyrdom of Jesus Christ. The cross adorns Christian churches, clergy clothes, church literature and is used in Christian rituals. In addition, believers wear a cross (mostly consecrated) on their bodies.

An important place in Christianity is given to the veneration of the Virgin. Four of the main Christian holidays are dedicated to her: the Nativity of the Virgin, the Introduction to the Temple of the Virgin, the Annunciation of the Virgin and the Dormition of the Virgin, many churches have been erected in her honor and icons have been painted.

Priests in Christianity did not appear immediately. Only after a final break with Judaism and a gradual change in the social stratum of early Christian society did a clergy appear in the Christian environment, who took all the power into their own hands.

Christian ordinances and rituals were not formed immediately. The sacrament of baptism was determined only at the end of the 5th century, after which the sacrament of communion (the Eucharist) was formed. Then, over the course of several centuries, chrismation, anointing, marriage, repentance, confession and priesthood gradually began to appear in Christian rituals.

For a long time, images of saints in Christianity were prohibited. As were forbidden, and any objects of worship, in the worship of which a number of Christians saw idolatry. The controversy about icons came to a logical conclusion only in 787 at the seventh (Nicene) ecumenical council, which allowed depicting sacred persons and related events, as well as worshiping them.

The Christian Church is a special divine-human organization. But not historical in any way. The Christian Church is a mystical formation, which, on a par with God, includes both living and already dead people, or, in other words, souls who, according to Christianity, are immortal. At the same time, modern theologians, of course, do not deny the social component of the Christian church, however, for them it is not the main point for determining its essence.

The spread of Christianity in Rome was associated with the crisis of ancient society. This socio-historical factor, which caused the emergence in society of a feeling of uncertainty in the ancient system of world order and, as a consequence, criticism of the ancient order, had a direct impact on the spread of Christianity within the Roman Empire. The disunity between different strata of Roman society, representing antagonistic couples, for example, such as free people and slaves, Roman citizens and subjects of the provinces, also increased the general instability in society and helped the advancement of Christianity, which affirmed among people in need the idea of ​​universal equality and salvation in another world ...

In the Roman Empire, Christians were always persecuted. From the very beginning of the emergence of Christianity and up to the IV century, it was so, then the imperial power, feeling the weakening of control over the country, began to look for a religion that would unite all the peoples of the empire, and eventually settled on Christianity. In 324, the Roman emperor Constantine declared Christianity the state religion of the Roman Empire.

There has never been unity within Christianity. Representatives of the Christian faith constantly engaged in discussions on Christological topics, which touched upon three main dogmas: the trinity of God, the incarnation and the redemption. Thus, the first Council of Nicaea, condemning the Arian doctrine that God the Son is not consubstantial with God the Father, established a single Christian understanding of this dogma, according to which God began to be defined as the unity of three hypostases, each of which is also an independent person. The third ecumenical council, which received the name of Ephesus, in 431 condemned the Nesterian heresy, which rejected the idea of ​​the birth of Jesus Christ from the Mother of God (the Nestorians believed that a man was born from the Virgin Mary, and then a deity entered into him). The fourth (Chalcedonian) Ecumenical Council (451) was dedicated to the substantiation of the dogma of redemption and incarnation of God, which affirmed the equal presence in the person of Christ, both human and divine, united unmerged and inseparably. The question of depicting Jesus Christ was decided even later - in the 6th century at the fifth (Constantinople) Ecumenical Council (553), where it was decided to depict the Son of God as a man, not a lamb.

There were several major schisms within Christianity. Differences in religious views, as a rule, were caused by differences in the social and religious life of different Christian communities. So in the 5th century in Byzantium the teaching of the Monophysites arose, which did not want to recognize Christ as both man and God. Despite the condemnation of this teaching by one of the ecumenical councils (415), it spread to some Byzantine provinces such as Egypt, Syria and Armenia.
One of the largest is considered the split of the 11th century, which occurred when the Roman Empire was divided into Western and Eastern. In the first, in connection with the fall of the power of the emperor, the authority of the Roman bishop (pope) greatly increased, in the second, where the imperial power was retained, the patriarchs of the churches were deprived of the approach to power. Thus, historical conditions formed the basis for the division of the once united Christian church. In addition, certain dogmatic and even organizational differences began between the two churches, which led to the final break in 1054. Christianity split into two branches: Catholicism (Western Church) and Orthodoxy (Eastern Church).
The last split of Christianity took place within the Catholic Church during the Reformation. The anti-Catholic movement that formed in Europe in the 16th century led to the separation of several European churches from Catholicism and the creation of a new trend in Christianity - Protestantism.


Watch the video: Jesus Christ and Christianity. World History. Khan Academy (July 2022).


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