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The Treasure Chest of the Early Christians : Faith, Care and Community from the Apostolic Age to Constantine the Great
David Batson

0802839452 Retail Price: $18.00
CenturyOne Price: $12.60
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Availability: Out-of-Print

Format: Paperback, 128pp.
ISBN: 0802839452
Publisher: Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing Co.
Pub. Date: December 2001


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From The Publisher:

This volume explores the formation of the Christian church as a faith community deeply concerned for the care of others. Plumbing the historical sources that illumine the development of Christian corporate and social life from its earliest days through the fourth century, David Batson chronicles the church's crucial role as caretaker of the destitute and deprived a role unique in late antiquity.

In uncovering the origins of Christian social action, Batson treats many themes that still resonate today: the relationship between church and state, the divergence of faith and practice, the conflict between traditionalism and modernity, the challenge of fundamentalism, and the continuing reality of persecution. Deft in his narrative of such accounts, Batson provides a fascinating story as well as an insightful study in social history. Readers will find in this book both valuable background to the world of the New Testament and a proper Christian model for modern community care.


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About the Author

Lecturer in social studies at Dumfries and Galloway College, Scotland.

Table of Contents

Chapter 1The Historical Background1
Chapter 2The Social Context of the Apostolic Age14
Chapter 3Jesus and the First Communities25
Chapter 4Charity Begins at Home42
Chapter 5Consolidation and Controversy55
Chapter 6Changing Fortunes74
Chapter 7Constantine and the Christian Empire100
EpilogueThe Roots of Community Care114
Select Bibliography120

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