The Lost History of Christianity

Philip Jenkins new book The Lost History of Christianity: The Thousand-year Golden Age of the Church in the Middle East, Africa, and Asia is the sort of historical tour de force that we have come to expect from him. The sub-title tells you what the book is about and I don’t really need to explain much more. Jenkins demonstrates very clearly that Christianity spread through Asia and North Africa far further and for much longer than I had ever grasped. Christians were well known in the Chinese court and the Mongol rulers expressly chose Christians as their advisors. To be honest, if you have read LaTourette’s history of Christian Mission, this book won’t hold many surprises for you. However, if you have only read the standard Church histories, which concentrate on the growth of the Church in the West then this book will be a real eye-opener for you. On balance, I reckon that this isn’t something I would recommend to everyone, but if you fancy yourself as a bit of a church historian, then you really can’t afford to miss out on it.

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4 replies on “The Lost History of Christianity”

You got me interested – but the review on Amazon is much less positive. Is there truth in what’s said there?

I don’t think I’ve read the book that the Amazon reviewer was referring to. He was obviously reading another book by the same name. Then again, I don’t really have an axe to grind on this subject, so I wasn’t predisposed to get hot under the collar that this guy was.

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