Timeline of Church History (New Testament Era)
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The History of the Church is a vital part of the Orthodox Christian faith. Orthodox Christians are defined significantly by their continuity with all those who have gone before, those who first received and preached the truth of Jesus Christ to the world, those who helped to formulate the expression and worship of our faith, and those who continue to move forward in the unchanging yet ever-dynamic Holy Tradition of the Orthodox Church.
New Testament era
- 46 BC Julius Caesar institutes Julian Calendar.
- 27 BC-180 AD Pax Romana.
- 20 BC Herod the Great begins to rebuild the Temple in Jerusalem.
- ca.4 BC Christ is born in Bethlehem; 14,000 Holy Innocents slain in Bethlehem.
- 1 Assumption of Moses, Jewish apocrypha written.
- 6 Census of Quirinius; Iudaea Province created under direct Roman administration with capital at Caesarea, as the Romans annex Samaria, Judea and Idumea.
- 18-37 Caiaphas becomes the High Priest of the Jews.
- ca.25-26 Death of Joseph the Betrothed.
- 26-36 Pontius Pilate is appointed the Roman Prefect of Judaea province.
- ca.28 John the Baptist began his ministry in the "15th year of Tiberius" (Luke 3:1-2), preaching "Repent, for the kingdom of heaven is near" (Matt 3:1-2), baptized Christ in the Jordan (Mark 1:4-11), was arrested and beheaded by Herod Antipas, tetrarch of Galilee.
- ca.28-30 Three year ministry of Jesus Christ, including: Temptation; Appointment of the Twelve Apostles; Sermon on the Mount; Miracles performed; Rejection; Transfiguration; Triumphal Entry into Jerusalem; driving out the Temple money changers; Cursing the fig tree; Giving the great commandment; Anointing; Mystical Supper; Arrest; Sanhedrin Trial; Before Pilate; Passion; Crucifixion on Good Friday; Entombment by Pharisees Joseph of Arimathea and Nicodemus of the Sanhedrin; Harrowing of Hell; Resurrection on Easter Sunday; Appearances to various people over the next forty days; Giving the Great Commission (Matt. 28:16-20); and Ascension.
- ca. 30 Martyrdom of Stephen the deacon, the first Christian martyr.
- 30 Conversion of Apostle Paul on road to Damascus.
- Some of these dates are necessarily a bit vague, as records for some periods are particularly difficult to piece together accurately.
- The division of Church History into separate eras as done here will always be to some extent arbitrary, though it was attempted to group periods according to major watershed events.
- This timeline is necessarily biased toward the history of the Orthodox Church, though a number of non-Orthodox or purely political events are mentioned for their importance in history related to Orthodoxy or for reference.
- Timeline of Orthodoxy in America
- Timeline of Orthodoxy in Australia
- Timeline of Orthodoxy in Greece
- Timeline of Orthodoxy in New Zealand
- Timeline of Orthodoxy in Japan
- Timeline of Orthodox Church and Roman Catholic relations
The following are published writings that provide an overview of Church history:
From an Orthodox perspective
- Schmemann, Alexander. The Historical Road of Eastern Orthodoxy.
- Ware, Timothy. The Orthodox Church: New Edition. (ISBN 0140146563)
- Dr. Kathryn Tsai. A Timeline of Eastern Church History. Divine Ascent Press, CA, 2004. ISBN 0971413924
From a Heterodox perspective
- Boer, Harry R. A Short History of the Early Church. (ISBN 0802813399)
- Cairns, Earle E. Christianity Through the Centuries: A History of the Christian Church. (ISBN 0310208122)
- Chadwick, Henry. The Early Church. (ISBN 0140231994)
- Collins, Michael, ed.; Price, Matthew Arlen. Story of Christianity: A Celebration of 2000 Years of Faith. (ISBN 0789446057)
- Eusebius Pamphilus; Cruse, C.F. (translator). Eusebius' Ecclesiastical History. (ISBN 1565633717)
- Gonzalez, Justo L. A History of Christian Thought, Volume 1: From the Beginnings to the Council of Chalcedon. (ISBN 0687171822)
- Gonzalez, Justo L. A History of Christian Thought, Volume 2: From Augustine to the Eve of the Reformation. (ISBN 0687171830)
- Gonzalez, Justo L. A History of Christian Thought, Volume 3: From the Protestant Reformation to the Twentieth Century. (ISBN 0687171849)
- Gonzalez, Justo L. The Story of Christianity, Volume 1: The Early Church to the Reformation. (ISBN 0060633158)
- Gonzalez, Justo L. The Story of Christianity, Volume 2: Reformation to the Present Day. (ISBN 0060633166)
- Hall, Stuart G. Doctrine and Practice in the Early Church. (ISBN 0802806295)
- Hastings, Adrian, ed. A World History of Christianity. (ISBN 0802848753)
- Hussey, J. M. The Orthodox Church in the Byzantine Empire: Oxford History of the Christian Church. (ISBN 0198264569)
- Jones, Timothy P. Christian History Made Easy. (ISBN 1890947105)
- Noll, Mark A. Turning Points: Decisive Moments in the History of Christianity. (ISBN 080106211X)
- Pelikan, Jaroslav. The Christian Tradition: A History of the Development of Doctrine, Volume 1: The Emergence of the Catholic Tradition (100-600). (ISBN 0226653714)
- Pelikan, Jaroslav. The Christian Tradition: A History of the Development of Doctrine, Volume 2: The Spirit of Eastern Christendom (600-1700). (ISBN 0226653730)
- Pelikan, Jaroslav. The Christian Tradition: A History of the Development of Doctrine, Volume 3: The Growth of Medieval Theology (600-1300). (ISBN 0226653749)
- Pelikan, Jaroslav. The Christian Tradition: A History of the Development of Doctrine, Volume 4: Reformation of Church and Dogma (1300-1700). (ISBN 0226653773)
- Pelikan, Jaroslav. The Christian Tradition: A History of the Development of Doctrine, Volume 5: Christian Doctrine and Modern Culture (since 1700). (ISBN 0226653803)
- Schaff, Philip. History of the Christian Church. (ISBN 156563196X)
- Wace, Henry; Piercy, William C., ed. A Dictionary of Christian Biography: Literature to the End of the Sixth Century A.D. With an Account of the Principal Sects and Heresies. (ISBN 1565630572)
- Walton, Robert C. Chronological and Background Charts of Church History. (ISBN 0310362814)
- History of Orthodox Christianity (QuickTime movies)
- Timeline of Patriarchal History. Order of St. Andrew the Apostle. Archons of the Ecumenical Patriarchate. (Pop-up Video Presentation, in Sections)