Sex and money scandals. An exploding divorce rate. Drug-addicted youths. And an ever-growing wordliness. Today's evangelical church is fighting battles on all fronts. And we seem to be losing these battles to the relentlessly encroaching world. Perhaps the answers to our problems are not in... read more
Beginning with a story about a prisoner, Bercot then goes on to ask and answer who were the early Christians and what their beliefs were. He discusses the view of right & wrong as well as their views on salvation, predestination, freewill, baptism, prosperity, and morality. He then goes on... read more
Beginning with a story about a prisoner, Bercot then goes on to ask and answer who were the early Christians and what their beliefs were. He discusses the view of right & wrong as well as their views on salvation, predestination, freewill, baptism, prosperity, and morality. He then goes on to discuss whether the teachings of the apostles were deliberately altered and how the changes from what the early Christians believed came to be and spread. As Constantine started unifying the churches, it was harder for individual churches to combat erroneous teachings. As Christianity grew farther away from its roots, movements arose to return the church to the earliest teachings. Starting with the Reformation and continuing through the Anabaptist movement, Bercot discusses these movements. He ends with a chapter that sums up what this information means for us today.
“Whoever heard of repenting from what is good in order to follow what is evil?”Polycarp
“You threaten me with a mere fire that burns for an hour and then goes out. Haven't you heard of the fire of the coming judgment and of the eternal punishment reserved for the ungodly? Why do you keep delaying? Do whatever you want with me.”Polycarp
“To the early Christian, trusting God meant more than a teary-eyed testimony about 'the time I came to trust the Lord.' It meant believing that even if obedience to God entailed great suffering, God was trustworthy to bring a person through it.”David Bercot
“A person who does not do what God has commanded shows he really does not believe God.”Clement
“To the early Christians, to claim to trust God while refusing to obey Him was a contradiction. (1 John 2:4)”David Bercot
“The belief that humans have slowly evolved into their present form of life isn't a modern view at all. And the belief that the universe came into being because of the chance collision of particles of matter isn't new either. Educated Romans shared many of the same views as today's secular scientists.”David Bercot
“Churches that depend on extensive rules to produce personal holiness can easily end up producing Pharisees instead.”David Bercot
“One thing that particularly impresses me about the early Christians is that they never put God in a box.”David Bercot
“These are those who have faith indeed, but also have the riches of the world. When tribulation comes, they deny the Lord on account of their riches and business . . . . As a result, those who are rich in this world cannot be useful to the Lord unless their riches are first cut down.”Hermas
“Refrain from much business and you will avoid sin. Those who are occupied with much business also commit many sins, being distracted by their business affairs instead of serving their Lord.”Hermas
“Few people will die for something they know is a deliberate lie.”David Bercot
1. The Prisoner
2. Who Were the Early Christians?
3. Citizens of Another Kingdom
4. Is Right and Wrong Simply A Matter of Culture?
5. Why They Succeeded Where We Often Fail
6. What They Believed About Salvation
7. What They Believed About Predestination and Freewill
8. What Baptism Meant to the Early Christians
9. Prosperity: A Blessing or a Snare?
10. Is Old Testament Morality Still Good Enough?
11. Who Better Understands the Apostles?
12. Were the Teachings of the Apostles Deliberately Altered?
13. How Early Christianity was Corrupted
14. The Remaining Barriers Crumble
15. The Most Influential Christian of All Time
16. Was the Reformation a Return to Early Christianity?
17. The Quest to Restore Early Christianity
18. The Anabaptist Fire
19. So What Does All This Mean For Us?
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