History is crucial for understanding a lot of the Bible, such as the history of Israel, or the Roman Empire. But please use the church-history tag instead for questions about the history of the church since the NT was completed.

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3answers
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Are there any tenets of Gnosticism that are still present in the church today?

Towards the end of the New Testament writing, the heresy of gnosticism was one of the chief "false teachings" against which Paul and the other writers were contesting. Could someone present some of ...
23
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6answers
3k views

What is the history of the concept of a “personal relationship with Jesus”?

It is common these days to hear questions like: Do you have a personal relationship with Jesus? Or... The most important thing is your personal relationship with Jesus. The Bible never ...
13
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5answers
672 views

Ancient nations in a young earth

How do "Biblical literalists" and other Young Earth Creationists account for the fact that some cultures have been continuously measuring the years for almost five millenia?
7
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4answers
600 views

How should a Christian deal with destructive higher criticism of the Bible? [closed]

In recent times authorship of Biblical books has been called into question by modern scholars. It is believed that Isaiah didn't write Isaiah, John didn't write John, Matthew didn't write Matthew, ...
4
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3answers
259 views

What did Brigham Young teach regarding Blood Atonement, and is that doctrine still held today in the LDS/Mormon Church?

Brigham Young taught the doctrine of Blood Atonement that indicated the blood of Christ was insufficient to provide forgiveness for some sins. What are the specifics regarding the doctrine of Blood ...
18
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4answers
96k views

Who was Pharaoh when Moses lived in Egypt?

Do we have a good idea as to which Pharaoh(s) were around during the time of Moses' life? What internal and external evidence exists to back-up those claims? Do any Christian traditions attach any ...
20
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4answers
1k views

Why is Rome the holy city?

Why did Rome become the seat of the Pope and the central location for the Church? I would think that Jerusalem would be the first choice. There are also a number of other cities that I would ...
6
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2answers
888 views

Did the city of Nazareth exist in the time of Jesus?

The question stems from this video. Additionally, I would like to know any books, articles and other credible sources that deals with this question for further reading*. Thank you for your time. * ...
7
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2answers
371 views

What is the source of the story about the melted gold in the destroyed temple in 70 AD

In Matthew 24:2, Mark 13:2 and Luke 21:6, Jesus seems to indicate that in the coming temple destruction, "not one stone will be left upon another". And, indeed, this seems to be the case from the ...
8
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2answers
216 views

Was Luke, the author of the Gospel and Acts, a slave?

"It is possible that Paul’s “relative” Lucius is Luke, the author of the Gospel and the Acts of the Apostles. On his second missionary journey, Paul may have gone to Troas (where Luke lived—or ...
47
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6answers
13k views

The Bible seems to allow polygamy. Why doesn't the church? [closed]

In Exodus 21:10 and Deuteronomy 21:15-16 (among many other passages), it talks about polygamy as if it were acceptable. Indeed, there are several holy men (Abraham and Solomon come to mind offhand) ...
9
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1answer
1k views

Where are the tombs of Jesus' original 12 disciples?

I would like a list of the twelve disciples, correlated with their most probable burial location. I understand that many reliquaries containing parts of their bodies were distributed throughout ...
4
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4answers
5k views

What is the relation between the First Baptist Church and the Baptist Church?

In my neighboorhood ther has been a Baptist Church for a while. I´m moderately aware of the history of Baptist Church in general. Very recently a temple of The First Baptist Church has been built. ...
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3answers
168 views

Can we really claim to have the power of God's heritage? [closed]

The Bible says that we are all his children. But our heritage is full of malice and evil - many good and decent things too, but with equal amounts of evil in the mix. Can we claim to have the power of ...
16
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10answers
1k views

Has God created anything since he rested on the 7th day? [closed]

Genesis 2 indicates that on the 7th day after creation God rested. Genesis 2:1-3 NIV 1 Thus the heavens and the earth were completed in all their vast array. 2 By the seventh day God ...
15
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4answers
395 views

On which date was Christ born?

Most Christians celebrate the birth of Christ (Christmas) on December 25. But was this really the day of Christ's birth? What was the actual date of Christ's birth?
31
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4answers
2k views

How were the books of the New Testament chosen?

I'm interested in finding out: what the process of choosing the books of the New Testament was, when did it occur, who did the choosing, and what are the supporting evidences
7
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1answer
275 views

Where did the belief that Saul fell from a horse come from?

Many people (especially Catholics; I don't know about others, but some say that protestants usually don't believe this) think that Saul/Paul fell from a horse at the moment of his conversion, perhaps ...
2
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2answers
107 views

In Christ's time, who possessed the written word?

2000 years ago, written works were extremely valuable. It's not like every Jewish family had their own "family scroll" that they read to their children every night. It's doubtful even that every Rabbi ...
6
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3answers
5k views

What crime was committed by the “thieves” crucified with Jesus?

During yesterday's sermon, the pastor mentioned the theory that the thieves crucified next to Jesus likely weren't simple thieves to warrant such a sentence, but were probably "thieves with a cause." ...
9
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3answers
1k views

Why was Paul allowed to write in jail?

We know that Paul was held under some brutal conditions—his feet in stocks in one case. Yet he was still able to write many letters from prison. Was this during some of his "nicer accommodations", or ...
12
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4answers
8k views

Why was the New Testament Written in Greek?

New Testament was written in Greek. But Jesus lived in Israel and was supposed to be the next King of Israel. I think it is probably fair to assume that he and his twelve apostles spoke Hebrew. Then ...
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9answers
4k views

Did early church fathers understand the doctrine of trinity?

Many historians and religious scholars ... attest to the influence of Greek or Platonic philosophy in the development and acceptance of the Trinity doctrine in the fourth century. ... the ...
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2answers
110 views

Why wasn't the Bible enough for the founding fathers of America? [closed]

In light of the 4th of July in America, the founding fathers created new and brilliant ideas and concepts by which the "new world" would and still live by. It is almost as if they created a new ...
7
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1answer
181 views

What is the significance of Palm branches?

I've been pondering this question for a while. With Easter right around the corner, I figured this is the perfect time to ask. See these verses: Most of the crowd spread their cloaks on the road, ...
8
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3answers
22k views

In what order were the books in the New Testament written?

I'm just curious as to the actual timeline and known dates of the New Testament books. I know the version fo the Bible I read had the letters from Paul ordered by their size, and not when they were ...
12
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4answers
2k views

Why did Luther curse those who oppose indulgences?

In the 95 Theses, Luther makes a stand against corruption in the Catholic church of that day. This resulted in events leading to the separation between the Catholic and Protestant churches. It seems ...
7
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1answer
130 views

What misconceptions about the LDS church are a product of Mark Hofmann's forgeries?

I've heard a lot of strange stories about LDS church history. What I didn't know is that many of them were created by a man who is considered by forensic experts to be the best forger yet caught. ...
7
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4answers
7k views

Why did Daniel consider the allotment of food and wine to be wrong for him to eat?

When Nebuchadnezzar conquered Israel and took Daniel and other Jewish men into his court, he assigned them food and wine from the king's table. The king appointed for them a daily ration from the ...
11
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2answers
946 views

When did the split in crufix/empty-cross sybolism occur and why did it happen?

Today, we have Catholic and Orthodox churches (and a few others) using the crucifix, whereas most Protestant denominations use an empty cross in their symbolism. Did this difference in symbolism arise ...
1
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1answer
301 views

When did the “upside down cross” become a sign of anti-Christianity?

When did the "upside down cross" become a sign of anti-Christianity? I can find no mention of it in the Bible. However there is, in Christian history, the story of Peter's execution - which really ...
1
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1answer
78 views

At what age should Christians be confirmed according to St. Thomas Aquinas?

I've read this in Saint Thomas Aquinas' sermons on the Apostles' Creed (emphasis mine): “Confirmation.”—The second Sacrament is Confirmation. Just as they who are physically born need certain ...
9
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2answers
200 views

Which year did Jesus die? What is the most commonly held view

Is there a commonly held year for Jesus' crucifixion? What is the basis? In particular I would like to see biblical-basis. If not which Christian denominations teach a specific year for His ...
6
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3answers
7k views

Where did the religious symbol of the 'halo' come from?

I once read somewhere that the 'halo' was inherited by Christianity from ancient worshippers of the Sun.  However, although this seems believable I never bothered to verify its historic credibility - ...
4
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2answers
212 views

Historicity of which Biblical characters is recognized by Archaeology/History? [closed]

I know that Historicity of certain Old testament Kings is recognized. However some like Jonah or Job aren't know to fields of Archaeology or History. What information, evidence do we have and for ...
2
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3answers
357 views

Are the gospels comparable(equal) to contemporary works of historians?

Are the gospels (and especially claims on the identity of Jesus in the Gospels) comparable(equal) to contemporary works of contemporary historians like Tacitus and Josephus, in terms of objectivity( ...
6
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2answers
584 views

Was Billy Sunday the first evangelist to equate the “altar call” with salvation?

According to this article from the The Society for Effective Evangelism: Up until Billy Sunday, altar calls were invitations for seekers to come to an after-meeting or inquiry room where ...
2
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2answers
955 views

Why was Aaron not allowed into the promised land?

God judged Moses and Aaron separately at another event, why wasn't Aaron allowed into the promised land?
7
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2answers
382 views

When were the Fasting Patterns of the Eastern Orthodox Church Established?

I am under the impression that the fasting patterns of the Orthodox church were established over the course of several centuries. I am interested in some sources that would clarify when the pattern ...
4
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3answers
2k views

When and why did the Catholic Church first start issuing annulments?

I understand that the Catholic Church issues annulments in place of divorces under certain circumstances. When did this practice first begin and under what was the reasoning given for it and its ...
12
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2answers
511 views

How do the Dead Sea Scrolls impact modern apologetics?

I understand that the 1946 discovery of almost a thousand ancient texts in caves on the West Bank has had a significant impact, I'm just trying to figure out what specific changes the discovery has ...
7
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3answers
470 views

Who was the Egyptian that led the revolt of the Assassins in Acts 21?

When Paul was arrested in Jerusalem he was mistaken for an anarchist Egyptian: Acts 21:37-38 ESV As Paul was about to be brought into the barracks, he said to the tribune, “May I say something to ...
2
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5answers
224 views

What is the case against Gore Vidal's view that St. Paul “invented Christianity”?

I was watching Gore Vidal being interviewed for CSpan's In Depth series and his book Live from Golgotha was being discussed. He claims that St. Paul "invented" Christianity. That Jesus came for the ...
1
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1answer
62 views

What is the name of the theory or thesis that the brothers of Jesus came from a previous marriage of St. Joseph?

An important Christian tradition is that the brothers of Jesus, mentioned in the gospels, were born to Joseph by a previous marriage. Is there a name given to this tradition?
4
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2answers
90 views

Are there any traditions or schools of thought that track Jesus' movements?

I'm trying to put together a timeline of Jesus' ministry and it would be really cool to be able to say with some confidence where Jesus was when he spoke this or that given verse. Hoping some ...
3
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1answer
222 views

Is there any reference to Abraham building a house of worship? Where is Bakkah?

Is there any reference to Abraham building a house for worship in the Bible? Where is the valley of Bakkah located? In Islam they say Bakkah and Mecca are the same word, and the Kabah is built on ...
3
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2answers
172 views

Who developed the doctrine of Biblical Inerrancy first - Catholics or Protestants?

This article on Christian Fundamentalism says that it is developed by Protestants at Princeton University. This Catholic source on Biblical inerrancy says that it has always been with the Catholics. ...
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2answers
192 views

When did the massacre of the innocents happen? [duplicate]

When the Magi had gone, an angel of the Lord appeared to Joseph in a dream. Get up, he said, take the child and his mother and escape to Egypt. Stay there until I tell you, for Herod is going ...
16
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1answer
564 views

Where do primary sources for the Bible reside?

Bible translations are made from sources. Where are these sources? In a university, museum, government agency or what?
12
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3answers
717 views

How did the practice of soliciting the prayers of dead saints originate?

How did the practice of soliciting the prayers of dead saints originate? Did it start based on something in the bible? The apocrypha? A papal decree? On a side note, which groups practice this type ...